Drug arrests in Yakima

YAKIMA, Wash. -- More than one-person every day was hauled in on drug charges in Yakima.

"Do you think Yakima has a drug issue?" said Reporter.
"I'm pretty sure it does," said Clifford Quade. "I've heard of a lot of people ending up in the hospital over certain drugs they've been ingesting and it seems to be getting worse."

Last year, about 300 adults and more than 40 juveniles had drug arrests. This year, 400 adults had been caught and almost 100 juveniles. And the year wasn't over yet. When KIMA sifted through the records, they learned many of those arrests were made in downtown Yakima and on North First Street, the area of town where Sydney Foster lives.

"There's too much of it. It's not only on North 1st Street. It's all over Yakima," said Sydney Foster.

Owners of the All-Star Motel told KIMA they followed a strict policy of no drug use and were keen on keeping their residents safe. Their property was fenced in to keep unwanted people out. Sydney worked as a security guard to also keep a close watch on the property. He believed the changes have all made a difference at the All-Star.

"We're getting decent people in here now because nobody is allowed here that's not supposed to be here," said Sydney.

Sydney believed the area was trying to shed its negative reputation.

"A lot of the people on North First Street are doing everything they can to try to clean it up and run these people out," said Sydney.

KIMA learned from police that the most-common drugs found are meth, heroin, cocaine, and some marijuana. YPD credited its partnership with the DEA since last September to make more of those arrests and improved the quality of life for folks like Sydney.