Athens County Law Enforcement Agencies Join Major Crimes Task Force

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Law enforcement officials from several departments within Athens County have officially joined with officers from Fairfield County and Hocking County to form a major crimes task force.

The Athens County Sheriff's Office, Nelsonville Police Department, Athens Police Department, Ohio University Police Department and the Athens County Prosecutor's Office have joined with the Fairfield-Hocking Major Crimes Task Force to form the Major Crimes Unit, according to a news release from the Athens County Prosecutor's Office.

“Recent collaboration by our five Athens County law enforcement agencies led to the arrests of those involved in the Glouster-area drug enterprise,” said Athens County Sheriff Rodney Smith in the release. “Officially joining this multi-county unit marks another significant step in the collaborative approach we’re taking to crack down on illegal drugs and other serious crimes in our region.”

“We can’t allow Route 33 to continue to be a corridor for heroin and other dangerous drugs,” Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn noted in the release. “Joining this Unit will allow us to work as a united front to shut down the pipeline of illegal drugs, and treat the addiction that exists here in Athens County.”

“We are looking forward to the collaboration with our law enforcement partners in Athens County,” said Commander Eric Brown of the Fairfield-Hocking Major Crimes Unit in the release. “When this proposal was first discussed everyone felt it was a good fit when all three counties are being affected by drug traffickers and drug trafficking organizations using the U.S. 33 corridor from Columbus into Southeast Ohio. We hope that the sharing of intelligence and resources that all of the agencies possess will have a positive influence on the communities and citizens of Athens County."

Athens County law enforcement agencies, in joining the Major Crimes Unit, will be working in collaboration with the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office, the Fairfield County Prosecutor’s Office, the Hocking County Sheriff’s Office the Hocking County Prosecutor’s Office, the Lancaster Police Department, the Logan Police Department and the Pickerington Police Department.