By Portia Williams
LEWIS COUNTY, Ky. — According to the Lewis County Sheriff, Johnny Bivens, his office will be joining forces with the FADE Drug Task Force.
Bivens states that he will be assigning a full-time investigator to the multi-jurisdictional agency whose responsibility is to identify and destroy illegal channels of drugs that come into Lewis and surrounding counties, arrest violators and seize their financial assets.
“This is something that I have been trying to get done for quite sometime, due to major constraints, and limitations to become a member of the FADE Drug Task Force. We have always aggressively pursued elicit drugs here in Lewis County, but what this does is gives us the opportunity to assign one investigator whose sole responsibility will be to investigate drug crimes,” Bivens said.
According to Bivens, membership in FADE will enhance the efficiency of his office.
“Currently, we may assign a deputy to watch a drug house, and 10 minutes later that deputy will get called to a wreck, or something else, and have to leave. Now, if need be, that deputy could sit at this house for 12 hours, and we don’t have to worry them being called off to another assignment,” he said.
He also said teaming up with FADE allows synergy among the agencies that participate.
“Basically, we are pooling resources to create synergy among participating agencies with the ultimate goal of ridding our communities of drug dealers, abusers and the criminal activity that goes with it,” he said.
He said most of the financial needs not covered by the member agencies is covered by grants and proceeds from civil forfeitures. He also said he would like to thank Judge Executive Todd Ruckel and the Lewis County Fiscal Court members for their support and the many citizens of Lewis County who supported him in making this goal a reality.
They are still working with the FADE Drug Task Force to confirm all of the plans. He said he is optimistic that the new partnership will make a tremendous difference in regard to the drug issues in Lewis County.
According to Bivens, the partnership between his office and the FADE is set to begin July 1, 2014.
Portia Williams can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 286, or on Twitter @PortiaWillPDT.