Putting Big-City Pushers in Prison

Give Belmont County’s Major Crimes Unit credit for targeting the right people in their ongoing battle against drug abuse. The unit, composed of law enforcement officers and officials from throughout the county, has a good record of arresting out-of-town pushers.

As drug abuse goes, street-level pushers often are the little fish. Suppliers, often from big cities outside our area, are the big fish.

Last week, the Major Crimes Unit arrested a man from Cleveland for allegedly trafficking in heroin and crack cocaine. Also arrested in the same hotel room were a 17-year-old girl from Cleveland and a Wheeling woman.

Investigations such as that one often are more difficult and time-consuming than merely arresting local residents for drug-related crimes. But putting the big fish out of action is more important, because it interrupts the supply chain of illicit drugs more effectively.

So, good for the Major Crimes Unit for its focus on out-of-town suppliers.

Unfortunately, as we have noted many times, taking one Cleveland pusher out of action merely opens the door for someone else from that city or elsewhere to come into our area. For one reason or another, many of the urban pushers seem to belive our predominantly rural area is easy pickings. Proving them wrong must be especially enjoyable for members of the Major Crimes Unit.