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Roanoke Police say they expect to arrest a lot of drug dealers soon, dealers they’ve been watching for months in one small neighborhood.  But what’s new this time is the option they’ll offer about one-third of them —  instead of a permanent record for a felony arrest. WFIR’s Evan Jones has the story.
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It’s called “Drug Market Intervention”. Roanoke Police Chief Chris Perkins says of those 24 identified drug dealers in this one neighborhood, anyone with a previous violent record will be prosecuted. But seven or eight others will be given a choice: prosecution or enrollment with TAP for education, job training  or whatever else gives them the chance to live a productive adulthood.

Perkins says similar programs in other cities have consistently shown significant reductions in crime rates — both drug dealing and all the related thefts and other crimes that go with it.

Perkins says it’s modeled after programs in other communities that have substantially reduced crime rates and the desirability of both neighborhoods and entire cities as a place to live — and for businesses to locate