Lincoln County Sheriff's Office discontinues drug round-up operations

A popular drug round-up operation in Lincoln County will now be discontinued. The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office says this was a tough decision they had to make, but they’re testing out a new approach to catch drug offenders.

Instead of waiting to organize round-ups twice a year, sheriff David Carpenter says arrests will be spread out through-out the year in order to not exhaust their resources. They’ll pick up offenders every two to three weeks.

“It’s very taxing on our detention staff and our current staff that works here to have large drug roundups,” Sheriff Carpenter said.

FOX46 was there at the last drug round-up operation Lincoln County had back in April. Sheriff Carpenter says the operations were exhausting their manpower. He says arresting in 40 to 50 drug dealers and drug offenders at once meant months of planning, investigating and hours of overtime pay for 25 employees needed to pull it off.

On top of that, he says the court system and the jail felt overwhelmed handling that amount of offenders in a short amount of time.

“It’s hard on our detention staff and detention facility. We’re not that large of a facility here in Lincoln County,” he said.
Lt. Jon Propst, narcotic investigator, says who wanted to remain anonymous says picking up offenders every two to three weeks means keeping the alleged drug dealers on their toes at all times.

“Instead of waiting on us to round you up once or twice a year, you have any time of day and any time of night to worry about us coming to get you,” Propst said.

The sheriff says they will continue to test out this new method, but he’s willing to go back to organized round-ups if the new strategy proves to be unsuccessful. They’re hoping to track down the same amount of drug offender that they would normally arrest with the round-ups.