Drug-Related Homicide Task Force Seizes Homemade Armored Vehicle
SEPT 30--Detroit, MI- On September 19, 2003, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Detroit Police Department (DPD), and the Michigan State Police (MSP) raided a home, valued at over $1 million dollars, located at 22636 Lake Crest Drive, St. Clair Shores, Michigan. The investigation involves large-scale marijuana trafficking throughout the Southeast Michigan area with numerous ongoing homicides believed to be connected to this case.
Evidence seized at the residence included a 2000 GMC cargo van, which had been converted into a homemade armored vehicle by the suspected traffickers. From the exterior, the vehicle appeared to be a standard cargo van. However, upon examining the interior of the vehicle, the agents realized that the organization had installed 3 inches of bulletproof glass around the entire rear compartment of the vehicle. In the occupant compartment, the group had installed custom rails with bulletproof glass, which allowed the driver and passenger to vertically raise the "ballistic shield" over the vehicle's side window while maintaining their mobility. This is believed to be the first time any vehicle such as this has been seized by law enforcement in the United States, which had the potential to cause extreme danger to the public as well as police.