20 people – including leaders of a local gang – have been arrested as part of a months-long narcotics operation jointly run by federal and local law enforcement agencies, including the Daytona Beach Police Department (DBPD) and the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office (VCSO).
Search warrants were served today at nine different locations in the Daytona Beach area as part of Operation Dirt Devil, which started last December.
The main focus of the operation is the From The Dirt (FTD) Gang, the same group who were involved in an unauthorized large gathering on the beachside last Memorial Day weekend which eventually required assistance from VCSO and other local law enforcement agencies before it was broken up.
“This gang is involved in narcotics trafficking and numerous shootings of both people and property, including a homicide,” stated DBPD Chief Craig Capri. “FTD is a menace to our streets. I want to thank our law enforcement partners for helping us capture these people before they could commit any more mayhem.”
The murder Chief is referring to happened on July 9, 2019 near the intersection of Weaver Street and Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Boulevard. The victim in that case is 19-year-old Daemon Carn. The suspect in that case – 19-year-old Kevin Stokes – was arrested the following September.
Three of the nine locations targeted today are in the Cedar Highlands area of Daytona Beach, which served as a hub for FTD’s illegal operations. Several people associated with this area were also targeted by law enforcement, according to Capri.
“FTD was recruiting young people to run their drug sales,” Capri stated. “That’s a situation we couldn’t tolerate. Hopefully, today’s efforts will help clean up the problems we’ve been having in Cedar Highlands and make it safer for residents.”
Various drug, weapon and disorderly conduct charges will be filed against those arrested. Large amounts of money and drugs – including cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine – were also seized during this operation.
Law enforcement continues to search for other members of the FTD Gang as part of Operation Dirt Devil, all of whom have active arrest warrants.