Jeff Snyder said he is tired of living like a prisoner inside his home as drug dealers and prostitutes roam in his York city neighborhood.
In the past three years since moving to the first block of South Penn Street, Snyder said, he has called 911 repeatedly to report drug dealers to police.
Finally fed up at what he calls inaction on the part of authorities, Snyder placed a sign in his storefront window this week telling drug dealers they were free to sell all the crack they wanted because the city police will not do a thing about it.
"I am fed up. I am so stressed out. I am a prisoner in my own home," Snyder said Saturday.
The sign went up the day after, Snyder said, he witnessed a drug deal and wasn't happy with the police response.
At first, Snyder did not want his name associated with the sign. He, like many of his neighbors, are afraid of retaliation in a neighborhood where they often hear gun shots. Snyder said he has a jar full of spent bullet shells he has collected off the sidewalk.
Snyder broke his silence Saturday after he walked out of a convenience store and a man he says is a crack dealer pointed his thumb and pointer finger at him as if it were a gun.
"I am scared out of my pants," Snyder said.
York City Police Detective Andy Shaffer, who runs the city's vice unit, said last week that police spent a lot of time in the first two blocks of South Penn Street last year.
Police executed more than 10 search warrants for illegal drugs and made at least 25 arrests in those blocks, he said.
"We are still actively working it despite what the sign says," Shaffer said.
During a recent citywide drug operation, police said, they arrested Sihee Jamison, 21, in the 100 block of South Penn Street. Jamison was charged with delivery and possession with intent to deliver crack cocaine. Police seized $600 in cocaine and $1,300 in cash.
York City Police Capt. Wes Kahley said the neighborhood will be covered by a patrol unit dedicated to the city's west end, which will start in March.
Snyder made the original sign with white lettering on his glass storefront window. Then, he said, he watched from his third-floor window as somebody smashed his window with a brick.
He said he called 911 and gave a description of the man and the type of car he sped off in. He called 911 three more times Saturday when he saw the man back in the neighborhood and waited for police. The police did not come, he said.
Snyder said he bought the brick townhouse for $34,000 three years ago. He spent the past three years renovating the home.
He was hopeful of putting in an art gallery, featuring his ceramic and pottery crafts.
He is afraid his dream of a gallery is gone as long as drug dealers congregate outside his front door near the sign, which reads "Deer crack dealers, you kin sell crack on this block and the York police will not stop you."
The 54-year-old Snyder said the only way he will take the sign down is if the city replaced it with one-inch thick bulletproof glass.
"All that sign is doing is stating the conclusion of my experiment. This is the result of a statistical study I conducted over the past two years," Snyder said.