Police: Hazleton Man Busted For Drug Dealing

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HAZLETON -- A man is locked up in Luzerne County facing numerous felony drug charges.

Hazleton police say Luis Martinez, 24, was arrested after drugs were found on him during a traffic stop.

The Hazleton police chief said a further search of his home, which sits near a church and a Catholic school, turned up more drugs, cash and bullets to a handgun.

Police say they arrested Martinez after finding drugs and cash on him during a traffic stop.

Officers say they also found $5,000 worth of cocaine and heroin, $1,400 in cash and a magazine clip and ammunition for a handgun during a search warrant here at Martinez`s home along North Laurel Street.

“23 grams of cocaine and 340 bundles of heroin, 9 millimeter rounds, 26 9 millimeter rounds which is less than half a box,” said Chief Frank DeAndrea.

“I went to our back door and opened up the door and there was a policeman there with a drawn gun and he said go back inside, so I went back inside,” said one neighbor who lives right next door.

The chief says narcotics officers caught Martinez while doing surveillance for an unrelated incident and say they spotted Martinez dealing drugs.

A patrol officer followed the car Martinez was in and after seeing several traffic violations, the officer pulled Martinez over.

“They find drugs on his possession, three bundles of heroin and two grams of crack at his feet inside the vehicle after he consented to a search,” said Chief DeAndrea.

That`s what led police to search Martinez`s home, which sits next to a church, catholic school and an assisted living center.

Dawn Shoemaker delivers supplies to that home.

“I`m glad they caught him, especially next to the senior home and a church that`s just not right,” said Shoemaker.

“Hazleton has changed, I`ve lived here my entire life and the city has changed considerably,” said a next door neighbor.

Martinez is locked up at the Luzerne County Prison on $100,000 straight bail.

He has a preliminary hearing set for March 13..