COLUMBUS —The Ohio Drug Task Force Commanders Association (OTFCA), the High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA), and the Ohio Department of Public Safety today announced the results of a statewide drug enforcement effort that resulted in hundreds of arrests.
The focus of ”Operation Blue Light” was to conduct high-volume traffic stops around identified, heavily drug-trafficked areas throughout Ohio. Using marked Patrol cars, in conjunction with local drug task forces, this effort was intended to reduce traffic crashes and deter criminal activity.
The operation resulted in 259 criminal arrests, 307 drug cases, 68 illegal firearm recoveries and the seizure of more than $72,000. The operation began on Tuesday, June 25 and ended on Thursday, June 27. ”This intensive, three-day initiative was successful thanks to the dedication of all the law enforcement officers who participated in the operation and who’ve committed themselves to make Ohio a safer place every day,” said Governor DeWine. “Any time that we can take illegal drugs out of the hands of those driving on our roadways, we are protecting the law-abiding drivers and passengers who share the same streets.” Notably, 129 of the 259 total criminal arrests were of suspected felony cases; 130 of those arrests were of suspected misdemeanors. The 307 drug cases included 179 felony drug cases, 128 misdemeanor drug cases, and 12 referrals to drug treatment providers. Additionally, investigations began for 186 non-drug related cases, such as stolen vehicle or weapon cases.
The Ohio Task Force Commanders’ Association exists and operates as a unified body, which partners with the state to promote professionalism and cooperation through the sharing of information and resources in order to target the flow of illegal drugs and organized criminal activity into Ohio communities, ensuring the safety and security of Ohio’s citizens.
The mission of the Ohio HIDTA is to reduce drug availability by creating intelligence-driven task forces aimed at eliminating or reducing drug trafficking and its harmful consequences through enhancing and helping to coordinate drug-trafficking control efforts among federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies.
The Ohio Department of Public Safety’s Office of Criminal Justice Services provides federal and state grant funds to Ohio’s multijurisdictional task forces.