Tacoma police arrested five people and seized more than 10 kilograms of black-tar heroin Wednesday night as part of a drug investigation.
Investigators believe the five are part of a larger drug trafficking organization that has been distributing heroin in the Tacoma area on behalf of a Mexican drug cartel, Tacoma police spokesman Mark Fulghum said.
The investigation into the organization started with an undercover drug buy and quickly evolved, Fulghum said.
After the buy, the investigation led undercover drug officers to a home near 140th Street and Canyon Road. They got a warrant to search the home and knocked on the door Wednesday night, Fulghum said.
“When they went to the door, they were confronted by a man armed with a shotgun,” he said. “His role was to guard the home and its contents.”
The man put down the shotgun and was taken into custody after a short standoff.
Inside the home, investigators found more than 10 kilos of heroin, two shotguns, a handgun and cash. The drugs were valued at $800,000, Fulghum said.
Investigators had stopped a van seen leaving the home. The Tacoma Police Department’s drug dog located some drugs inside the van. He also found a bundle that had been dropped along the roadway, Fulghum said.
The five people were arrested at the home and in the nearby area on drug-related charges. They could face federal charges stemming from the investigation.