Dozens arrested during initiative to reduce violent, drug-related crimes in Huntington
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) – An initiative to reduce violent, drug-related crimes in the city of Huntington resulted in the arrest of 42 wanted people, the Huntington Police Department reported Tuesday morning during a press conference.
“It’s been not just a month-long activity. This has been a six month process to get to this point and of course we’re not finished,” said Chief Karl Colder.
While standing in front of a table full of seized contraband, Huntington Police Chief Colder said along with partnering agencies the Huntington Violent Crime Drug Task Force executed search warrants focused on targeting narcotics dealers and wanted individuals who commit violent acts.
During the month of May, the Huntington Violent Crime Drug Task Force has:
- Executed 10 search warrants in Huntington
- Arrested 42 individuals with more arrests expected in the next few days and weeks
- Seized 23 firearms from convicted felons and prohibited persons
- Seized 358.59 grams of heroin and fentanyl
- Seized 465 grams of methamphetamine
- Seized 3,852 grams of marijuana
“That 358 grams of fentanyl could potentially kill about 155,000 people. Because 2.3 milligrams of fentanyl is deadly,” Chief Colder said. “So, you just think about the number and you think about our population here in Huntington and you say, ‘wow this is what this drug can do.’ ”
“That 358 grams of fentanyl could potentially kill about 155,000 people.”
Several of the people arrested are from out of state, and Chief Colder hopes this initiative helps deter the pipeline of drugs coming into the city.
“These our outsiders and this is what they prey on the small towns of America, and so we really have to be aggressive,” Colder said.
Lissa Jordan, Assistant Special Agent in Charge with ATF, says West Virginia is a source state for criminals to get ahold of guns.
“Drug dealers will come down with the drugs and trade them, and take the guns back to Detroit, Chicago, Pennsylvania wherever they’re taking them back to,” she said.
Tuesday, Chief Colder also thanked Huntington neighbors for calling in tips to the Anonymous Crime Tip Line. (304.696.4444)
“We want them to continue to do that. We also want them to be a little patient. Because we have a lot more to do. I’m confident in our department. I’m confident in our prosecutors, our partners,” Chief Colder said.
All individuals targeted during the initiative have been wanted for serious criminal offenses related to violent and/or drug-related crimes, officials say.
“We want them to understand that we have to develop their trust. How do we develop their trust? By doing this,” Colder said. “We’re not saying that it’s totally over because of this; what we’re saying is we’re going to continue to do this.”
The Huntington Violent Crime Drug Task Force plans to continue this operation throughout the summer.
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