Morgan Co. sheriff starts drug combat unit

(WBIR-Wartburg) With more than 50 meth busts in Morgan County reported in 2013, the local sheriff's department recently did some reorganization to help combat the ongoing problem.

"We're not normal, routine patrol where we answer calls, reports and etc. We're out looking for actual criminal activity," said Sgt. David Woodard, who's part of a new unit for the department -- designed solely to snuff out the drug activity that seems to plague the county, year after year.

"It's unique because we're such a small department. I mean we have only two road officers per shift," Sgt. Woodard added.

The unit was formed several weeks ago, with three deputies currently on the squad. The goal is for the men to not only take daily calls, like responding to car accidents or other medical situations. Instead, the unit will be used solely for catching criminals, most of the time activity involving drug use.

The unit will patrol the 500-square mile land area by car. A fourth person is anticipated to be added by the end of 2014.

Woodard called the units' early efforts successful.

"So if we could can make a lot of drug arrests and get people off the street, it's going to slow down the burglaries, the thefts. Because if those kind of people are in jail, then you don't have to worry about breaking into the good citizens of Morgan County," the sergeant added.

The idea of this kind of group within the sheriff's department came from a similar program in Anderson County.


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