CHRONICLE: How the pandemic changed the war on drugs – KETV Omaha

Posted: April 25, 2021 at 1:53 pm

CHRONICLE: How the pandemic changed the war on drugs

Updated: 10:00 AM CDT Apr 25, 2021

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OMAHAS NEWS LEADER CHRONICLING THE STORIES AND PEOPLE MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN OUR COMMUNITY. THIS IS KETV NEWSWATCH 7S CHRONICLE. GOOD MORNING. IM ROB MCCARTNEY. THE PANDEMIC DIDNT STOP DRUG TRAFFICKERS FROM KEEPING UP WITH THEIR BUSINESSES AND SPECIAL AGENTS ARE WORKING HARD TO GET. DRUGS OFF OUR STREETS. SO THIS MORNING A LOOK AT HOW THE DEA GETS THE JOB DONE PLUS THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO OVERDOSED IN OMAHA WHAT PARAMEDICS SEE WHEN THEY RESPOND AND WHAT DRUGS ACTUALLY DO TO YOUR BODY TO YOUR BRAIN ONCE THEY ENTER YOUR SYSTEM. FIRST HOW THE WAR ON DRUGS CHANGE DURING THE WAR ON COVID JUST BECAUSE THE WORLD OPT DRUG DEALING DIDNT BUT IT CHANGED A LITTLE AND NOW WERE STARTING TO SEE A REAL IMPACT. I TALKED WITH JUSTIN KING THE NEW SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE OF THE NEBRASKA DIVISION OF THE DRUG ENFORCEMENT AND ADMINISTRATION ABOUT WHAT THEYRE SEEING. THIS COULD HAVE BEEN A TRAFFIC STOPPER. IT COULD HAVE BEEN OUT OF A HOUSE. AT A VERY SMALL SAMPLE OF WHATS BEING TAKEN OFF OUR STREETS JUSTIN KINGS THE NEW SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE FOR THE DRUG ENFORCEMENT ADMINISTRATIONS. OMAHA DIVISION. HE SAYS THE PANDEMIC HIT THE DRUG TRAFFICKING WORLD WITH THE LAW OF SUPPLY AND DEMAND SUPPLY WAS NOT AS READILY AVAILABLE. WE SAW A DECREASE IN AVAILABILITY AND WE SAW THE PRICES OF THE DRUGS GO UP AND THEY TRAFFICKERS FINDING DIFFERENT WAYS TO GET THEIR PRODUCT HERE. YOU CAN JUST LOOK AT THE REGULAR SHIPPING BOX THAT GOES AROUND EVERY DAY. WE SEE TRUCKS DELIVERING THINGS ALL THE TIME. WE SEE A LOT OF THAT NOW AND EVERY TIME I THINK IVE SEEN SOMETHING IVE SEEN IT ALL ILL SEE SOMETHING THERE FORCING AGENTS TO ADJUST WHENEVER WE STARTED TO SEE A LOT MORE DRUGS BEING SENT THROUGH PARCELS. WE STARTED MOVING OUR EFFORTS TO HOW CAN WE INVESTIGATE THAT BETTER? BECAUSE ITS A CAT AND MOUSE GAME AND GAME NEVER STOPPED NOT EVEN WHEN THE WORLD DID FOR THE PANDEMIC THE PRODUCTION DIDNT STOP THEY CONTINUED TO STOP. STOCKPILE SO IN ANTICIPATION WHEN IT OPENED UP AND WE DEFINITELY SEE THAT IN OUR SEIZURES TAKE A LOOK AT THESE LATEST NUMBERS THE DEA LOOKED UP FOR US. THIS IS JUSTIN NEBRASKA DURING THE PANDEMIC 221 ARRESTS 241 CASES SEIZING 3.3 MILLION DOLLARS IN ASSETS. WE SEE OUR SEIZURES GOING UP AND YOU KNOW, THERE ARE CONCERNS THAT YOU KNOW, ARE WE SEEING MORE SEIZURES DUE TO TRANSSHIPMENT THROUGH OUR AREA OR ARE WE SEEING MORE SEIZURES BECAUSE OF END USER USE AND ITS A COMBINATION OF BOTH AND BREAKING DOWN SOME OF THE DRUGS. THEY GOT MORE THAN POUNDS OF COCAINE NEARLY 5,200 POUNDS OF MARIJUANA MORE THAN 700 POUNDS OF METHAMPHETAMINE AND 22,544 PILLS METHAMPHETAMINE IS STILL OUR BIGGEST DRUG THREAT. ITS NOT UNCOMMON FOR US ON ANY GIVEN DAY US OR ANY OF THE LOCAL STATE FEDERAL COUNTERPARTS WHO ALL WORK DRUGS TO SEIZE 20 30 POUNDS AT A TIME OF METHAMPHETAMINE CRIMINAL CROSS THAT HAS COME ACROSS THE BORDER ULTIMATELY DESTINED FOR HERE. MOVING THROUGH HERE TO GO TO ANOTHER LOCATION. IT SAYS TO ME THAT FIRST AND FOREMOST IS THAT THE PRODUCTION DIDNT STOP BECAUSE OF COVID AND IT SHOWS THAT THE MARKET. IS THEY FEEL THE PRODUCT IS MORE IMPORTANT TO GET IT INTO THIS COUNTRY AS FAST AS POSSIBLE NOW? BUT IT ALSO SHOWS JUST HOW IMPORTANT OUR EFFORTS ARE TO KEEP THAT OFF THE STREETS. I MEAN EVERY TIME YOU LOOK AT SOMETHING LIKE THIS AND YOU SEE THIS EVERY TIME WE TAKE SOMETHING OFF THE STREET THATS PEOPLE. REALLY ON THEIR RADAR ALL THOSE PILLS COUNTERFEITS MIXED IMPRESSES LIKE THIS WITH USERS CLUELESS AS TO WHATS IN EACH ONE IF YOU HAVE LIKE A PILL, PRESS LIKE WHAT WERE LOOKING AT RIGHT HERE WHERE THIS PILL PRESS SOMEBODY COULD BE HAVE SOME RECIPE WHERE THEYRE MIXING UP WHAT THEY SAY IS A WHAT TO LOOK LIKE AN OXYCONTIN OR A OPIOID PRESCRIPTION DRUG. WELL THAT PRESCRIPTION DRUG MORE THAN LIKELY NOW IF ITS SOLD ON THE STREET IS GOING TO HAVE FENTANYL IN AND FENTANYL IS SO POTENT THAT ITS NOT AN EXACT SCIENCE. KING SAYS ONE PILL MAY HAVE VERY LITTLE FENTANYL IN IT ANOTHER MAYBE NOTHING BUT AND ITS NOT JUST IN THE ELSE THEYRE FINDING A LOT OF HEROIN LACED WITH FENTANYL. WE ASSUME EVERYTHING WE HAVE SEIZED HEROIN-WISE NOW HAS FENTANYL IN IT. WERE SEEING THAT IN ALSO CONTRIBUTE TO OUR OVERDOSE DEATHS. THATS BECAUSE IT ONLY TAKES THIS MUCH FENTANYL MAYBE EVEN LESS TO KILL YOU KING POINTS OUT HOW MUCH CAN FIT IN A ONE GRAM PACKET LIKE THIS WITHIN THIS GRAM IF THIS IS FENTANYL, WERE TALKING ABOUT A THOUSAND DOSAGE UNITS POSSIBLY 500 LETHAL DOSES OF FENTANYL 500 DEADLY DOSES. THATS WHY THE DEA WANTS TO GET RID OF AS MANY ILLEGAL DRUGS AS POSSIBLE. THEYD BE INCINERATED LIKE THESE FROM A DRUG TAKE-BACK DAY EVENT KING AND HIS TEAM ARE TRYING TO STAY A STEP AHEAD OF THE TRAFFICKERS WHO HE KNOWS ARENT GOING AWAY. THE PANDEMIC HAS JUST SHOWN THAT THESE DRUG TRAFFICKING ORGANIZATIONS WILL CONTINUE TO EVOLVE THEY WILL CONTINUE TO EXPAND THEIR INFLUENCED ANYWHERE THEY CAN OR TO MAKE A PROFIT AT THE PRICE OF THE PEOPLE IN THIS COUNTRY. HERE WE GET FRUSTRATED. HE SAID EVERY DAY BUT WE HAVE SOME OF THE MOST PHENOMENAL PEOPLE THAT WORK IN THE INTO THIS FIELD AND THAT IS YOU KNOW, IVE BEEN ALL OVER THE WORLD DOING THIS AND IVE NEVER ONCE BEEN BORED. IF IVE EVER BEEN FRUSTRATED THE FRUSTRATION COMES FROM THE EXIT HAS ON THE ON THE PUBLIC AND WHAT IT DOES TO FAMILIES AND WHAT IT DOES TO OUR COMMUNITIES AT THE END OF THE DAY. WE DONT WANT PEOPLE TO EVER START DOING DRUGS AND AND THE DANGERS AND THE THINGS THAT WILL HAPPEN IN THE LIFE. ITS A LOT EASIER. ITS A LOT EASIER TO NEVER DO IT THAN TO TRY TO GET OFF OF A DRUG. AND STILL ADD THE NUMBER OF OVERDOSES RECORDED THIS YEAR IN OMAHA AND ONE OF THE CITYS TOP PARAMEDICS SHOWS US THE TOOLS THEY HAVE TO TREAT THOSE CASES IF YOURE WATCHING KETV, NEWSWATCH 7S CHRONI

CHRONICLE: How the pandemic changed the war on drugs

Updated: 10:00 AM CDT Apr 25, 2021

The war on drugs didn't stop when the war on COVID-19 began. The Drug Enforcement Administration started seeing changes in drug trafficking, including in Nebraska and Iowa. KETV NewsWatch 7 gets a walk-through of how agents stop the movement of drugs, plus the tools paramedics have on-hand to treat overdoses. We're also getting a look at how drugs impact your brain, and if those changes can ever be changed back. Part 2: Part 3:

The war on drugs didn't stop when the war on COVID-19 began. The Drug Enforcement Administration started seeing changes in drug trafficking, including in Nebraska and Iowa.

KETV NewsWatch 7 gets a walk-through of how agents stop the movement of drugs, plus the tools paramedics have on-hand to treat overdoses.

We're also getting a look at how drugs impact your brain, and if those changes can ever be changed back.

Part 2:

Part 3:

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CHRONICLE: How the pandemic changed the war on drugs - KETV Omaha

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