• Wilkinsburg bust yields drugs, guns, surprising sight in basement


    Police arrested two men after a raid on a Wilkinsburg home Friday morning, and what they found surprised them.

    “I’ve never seen a firing range in someone’s basement,” Officer Donald Hamlin told Channel 11.

    Only Channel 11 was there when police charged Marcus and Matthew Smith with a long list of felonies including stolen guns, drugs and endangering the welfare of their own children.

    “What initiated this investigation were numerous calls to that house for shots fired,” Hamlin said.


    After three weeks of investigation, a joint task force that included state agents conducted a raid on the house in the 90o block of Franklin Avenue at 6 a.m. Friday.

    The discovery of the firing range set up in the basement came as a shock – police say there were wooden logs to absorb the gunfire.

    “That tells me they want to be proficient in using their weapons in case they have an engagement with another individual or with police,” Hamlin said.

    Eight guns were seized, three of them stolen.

    Police say they found the guns, crack cocaine and what they believe to be crystal meth in bedrooms where children slept, including an 18-month-old.

    Police say they also found a half-dozen large marijuana plants growing outside the house.
    “Any time you get eight guns off the street, it’s important,” Hamlin said.

    Family services was notified and will investigate. The Smiths are in the Allegheny County Jail on $10,000 bond.


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