A 70-year-old landlady was so fed up with the drug dealings at her East Oakland house that she led a police raid on the building.
Amelia Galindo said Friday neighbors had been complaining to her for weeks that drug dealers had ousted her tenant and moved into the bungalow. Strangers were coming in and out of the house day and night and the neighbors said they were afraid to walk the streets.This week, Galindo decided she had enough.
With several police officers at her side, she went Wednesday to the house where Byron Holmes, 25, and an 18-year-old companion were arrested and charged with trespassing and possession of cocaine.
Galindo moved out of the bungalow 18 years ago to open a grocery store in the Merced County town of Dos Palos.
She said she had a string of "good, reliable tenants" until her most recent tenant moved out a few months ago.
That's when the complaints started.
"My neighbors, they knew what was going on," Galindo said. "There was so much traffic over there. I just knew I had to do something about it and I made up my mind to go over there."
The two men were arrested without incident, but police said they found two AK-47 assault rifles and three pit bulls in the house.
"I was thinking about it afterward, and I think I got pretty nervous later on. Just think about what could have happened. They had guns. There could have been shooting. Those men were prepared for anything."
But Galindo said she "would do it again if I had to, for the sake of my neighbors. They are really wonderful people."
However, Galindo said her crime-fighting days are over and she plans to sell the house.
"It's an eyesore now. It's so dirty. There is a lot of junk in there. They really ruined it. I don't want it any more."