MOUNT VERNON — A switch in task forces to combat the change in crime trends being made by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office was the announcement made Thursday morning by Knox County Sheriff Dave Shaffer.
Shaffer’s meeting Thursday with the Knox County Commissioners was also attended by Gary Rohler, Knox County Sheriff’s Office lieutenant; John Thatcher, Knox County Prosecutor; John Butterworth and Dennis Lowe with the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation; and Paul Cortwright, commander with the Central Ohio Drug Enforcement Task Force/lieutenant with the Licking County Sheriff’s Office.
A new partnership went into effect Jan. 1 with the Central Ohio Drug Enforcement Task Force which Shaffer says will expand the sheriff’s office ability to investigate drug trafficking and other illegal activity. The partnership will confront head-on the criminal activity coming into Knox County from south central Ohio and will provide more options for investigative assistance and technical expertise. KCSO had been working with the METRICH Task Force (Metro Richland County) since 1991. The CODE Task Force incorporates agencies from Licking, Muskingum, Coshocton and Perry counties.
“Based on just the past last few years, we’ve noticed that criminal activity is probably not as much based out of the northern area as it is the southern area,” said Shaffer. “And people don’t limit their activity to geographical boundaries.”
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