Dishonorable Mentions

Other big drug corners that didn't make the print edition.

By Steve Volk
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 8 | Posted May. 2, 2007

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There appears to be a delivery service operating here and some other stuff besides.

A gray-haired man in a wheelchair hands some cash to a young man who retreats indoors. When he returns a few seconds later, he hands something over to the old man, who pops whatever it is directly into his mouth and starts rolling away down the street.

Some guys sitting on a stoop in the morning with a Nextel propped open on the stairs beside them are there again five hours later, in the afternoon--only now they stand amid a swarm of 15 or 20 people.

One of them, a big dude in shades and a sweatshirt, holds the Nextel like a walkie-talkie and talks into it almost constantly. Guys on bikes roll up to him--the same guys every few minutes--then pedal off into the distance.

>> Poverty rate, 2000 Census: 29.2 percent

>> Priciest home: One home sold for $408,000 in 2005.

13th and Locust sts., Washington Square West

Incredibly, the 13th and Locust area remains a good place to get into all kinds of trouble. This reporter has been solicited for various products--pills, rock, powder, weed, "anything you need"--on a number of occasions.

The street operation often sets up around the high-speed line stop at 13th and Locust and also over on the corner of Chestnut Street. Lately locals say most of the drug dealing goes on around 12th and Spruce streets. And Judy Applebaum, president of the Washington Square West Civic Association, says they're still unsatisfied with the police response.

"All my folks know who the drug dealers in the neighborhood are," says Applebaum, "and it seems to me that if we can do that, it shouldn't be too hard for the police to figure out who the drug dealers are."

This corner didn't make the published list for one big reason: There are far too many Philadelphians living in far more danger than the residents of this relatively privileged part of the city. But that's also the reason PW printed an entire series of stories on drug dealing in this neighborhood a few summers back--and why 13th and Locust rates a mention here.

If the city of Philadelphia can't stop brazen drug dealing a block from the tony Avenue of the Arts, what hope do we have?

"From time to time they do a series of drug busts," says Applebaum. "But the dealers just lay low for a few weeks. We need sustained coverage, a task force, or however the Police Department does it, and not just for a couple of weeks, so the dealers don't get busted and just come back."

Poverty rate, 2000 Census: 36.3 percent.

Priciest home: This area boomed since the last census. As an example, condo units at 1324 Locust St. were going for more than $200,000 in 2006.

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Comments 1 - 8 of 8
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1. Linda Smith said... on Sep 28, 2008 at 02:35PM

“South Philadelphia seems to be forgotten totally. Shootings at 8th and Snyder, drug deals on 8th and 7th Street,800, 900, 1000, blocks of Winton, Cantrell Street as well as Jackson, and 10th Street, Shootings in same area. We are told by Councilman Green and Greenleys office that these are not considered Hot Zones, therefore Police feel we dont deserve police attention. Known homes for narcotic use with constant trails of drug dealers in and out while there are small children in same home and also same homes have DHS Involvement yet nothing is ever done, A Juvenile offender, now adult, who commits adult crimes including drug dealing while living in house owned by grandmother who is aware of situation and refuses to do nothing, DHD does nothing with the junkie mother at same address who is so high, she is passed out with a 3 year old unattended and has been involved with DHS since birth of child, yet nothing is done. Another woman on same block, drug user, prostitute, with small children and again with DHS involvment again. DHS has been involved with all 5 of the children she has given birth too. Drug traffic constant at this home as well. Our street and streets are run by junkies and the drug dealers who just laugh in our faces, deal in the open, knowing nothing will be done to them. Ha, call the police, they just do a drive by and pretend they see nothing and if they do, oh my, it is too hard to get out of their car to handle situations in South Philly. We have a neighborhood ex-narcotic cop, kicked off of force because of drug use, who sets sewer on fire, and nothing is done to him because he is an ex-cop The drug activity has gone on for many years, involving same people for over 5 years and we are told to be patient. The problems have moved from one generation to another in same house, meaning over 20 years of the same nonsense, yet we are told to be patient. WHEN IS SOMETHING GOING TO BE DONE, WE DONT GET ANSWERS. We have monhtly meetings at 10th and Winton with Councilman Greenly and Green office, and nothing is being done about any of the problems here, but we are handed a WHOLE LOT OF EXCUSES.”

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2. CottonShot_S.Philly said... on Aug 16, 2009 at 12:27AM

“Linda I agree...South Philly is up there all kinds of problems... 5th street to 10th street....Jackson street to Carpenter just as bad as anywhere in philly. 7th street from Synder til Moore street open air drug sales heroin/crack/weed all day...even more with phone calls...Just like they said "The Box": 21st and McKean sts. to 23rd and McKean sts., north to 21st and Sigel sts. through 23rd and Sigel sts., is heroin/crack/weed/pills/powder lot of kids killing kids around there too...
like is said there are parts of South Philly that are as bad as it gets bottom's to bad I am one of the ones who make it that way too. I am trying to get better”

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3. char said... on Nov 6, 2009 at 02:07AM

“Linda Smith,
I hope you get this message. I recently lost my husband for the weekend to crack on Cantrell St. We have been married for 15 years and have 2 boys together. I want nothing more to put an end to this. I would like to attend your monthly meetings on 10th and Winton with Councilman, and put a stop to drugs in our neighborhoods. Please e-mail me with the date, time, and address for the next meeting.”

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4. Anonymous said... on Feb 5, 2010 at 03:19PM

“16th and Catharine, the "box" of McKean to Sigel, that is all Universalville. Kenny Gamble and the various businesses within Universal all got HOPE funds to build in fill development that would clean up this area. Instead, Universal holds more blight than it develops. All the city has to do is to require that any group that got RDA property use it or lose it by a certain date. This is how the city will build a sustainable tax base again that can support good schools. We just can't afford to not collect property taxes and bail, and to not keep the bad guys in jail. NYC used to be like this, now it has the lowest murder rate in 43 years. NYC let the market work -- instead of holding lots of government and quasi-government or government funded entities that are poorly performing and druggy, the market was allowed to come in and buy with no pay to play like you see in Philly. This is the only way to add to the census of good people who are pushing out the drugs.”

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5. marky eck said... on Sep 12, 2011 at 10:31PM

“i am a white skinny that cops in kensington (north philly) i can honestly say the hood isnt that bad i have walked the streets many a time nd have never had a problem seeing is that im there for strictly business. shoutout to all the latinos holdin it down on cmbria, indiana, absolute, public enemy graveyard shift u know what it is meek.. btown out”

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6. Anonymous said... on Mar 22, 2012 at 02:13PM

“Everybody forgot about 9th and huntingdon”

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7. BADLANDZ BOYZ said... on Jan 30, 2014 at 04:16PM


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8. Anonymous said... on Apr 9, 2015 at 08:38PM

“What about 8th & Butler, that was THEE spot back in the day.”


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