Metro police saturate county - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Metro police saturate county

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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

Savannah-Chatham Metro police thought Operation Total Focus was going to be a bust.

They had 90 officers deployed Thursday night to saturate Savannah and Chatham County, a monthly operation designed root out criminals. Then, the biggest crime deterrent of them all came from the sky, a cold rain.

They were about to wrap up the operation early, when a captain noticed something suspicious.

Capt. John Best saw three men who he believed were casing a Family Dollar store on Savannah's eastside.

Best says they checked out three stores in 20 minutes before officers turned on their blue lights at the Shell Station on Victory Drive at Waters Avenue.

"It was textbook," Best said. "We had enough assets deployed."

Police said one of the three men in a powder blue Oldsmobile they were following got out and ran. He got across the street before police tackled him.

Officers say they found a handgun on that suspect, a gun reported stolen in 2008.

"All three have felony records," Best said. "All three were on probation."

Thursday night, all three were behind bars. Officers say they found marijuana on two of the men and gloves in the front and back seats.

Metro Maj. Richard Zapal, who headed up the operation, said that's the idea, to find crime before it happens.

"We come out here, and we're going to take the game to the criminals this time," he said. "They hit us, and we hit back harder."

The operation will continue nightly until 3 a.m. Sunday.

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