Around 70 people were arrested after an illegal gambling operation in the back of a furniture store was busted in Anaheim Wednesday, police said.
The raid around 10 a.m. near the corner of Lincoln Avenue and Euclid Street was the result of a two-month investigation spurred by dozens of complaints, according to the Anaheim Police Department.
From the outside, the nondescript building appeared to be a typical furniture store. But that façade was shattered as a SWAT team responded to the scene.
A man named Jay, who didn’t want to give his full name, told KTLA he was inside when police arrived Wednesday morning and people began breaking out the front windows to escape.
“They just went for it,” he said. “I mean, it’s a gamble — this whole place is about gambling, right?”
Community members regularly called police to report suspicious vehicles and activity at the location, said Anaheim police Sgt. Jake Gallacher.
“This type of thing is going on 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” he said. “So it is affecting our community and the quality of life of our residents.”
Authorities set off gas as they raided the building to ensure it was cleared before officers entered. Police themselves had to wait a while for the gas to clear, and remained on scene investigating after 3 p.m.
No further details were available.