1/31/2013 11:22:00 AM Drug Task Force racks up good first year stats
BY DENISE MARTIN
When the sheriffs for three counties in the east central region of Minnesota put their heads together to establish a special crime-fighting unit a year ago; the potential for the group was unpredictable. Regional law enforcement agencies simply knew that there were inter-related drug and violent offender activities overlapping an area larger than one county alone could keep tabs on.
A cooperative approach, sharing personnel and resources needed to be implemented. Chisago County Sheriff Rick Duncan said the first full year of the East Central Drug and Violent Offenders Task Force --2012--has resulted in officers and investigators initiating 250 cases and making 116 arrests. Sheriff Russ Monson of Isanti and Pine County Sheriff Robin Cole serve with Sheriff Duncan overseeing the efforts of agents working the task force.
Among highlights of the task force’s year: seizure of two pounds of methamphetamine, with a street value of about $90,000, said Sheriff Duncan. Other substances recovered include 24 pounds of khat and over 500 illegally possessed prescription medicines and 225 pounds of processed marijuana. Agents also have collected 24 guns, two properties, five vehicles and $81,800 in cash have been seized, said Sheriff Duncan.
There was even one case investigated that involved an undercover meet at a casino where an investigator was able to intervene in a murder-for-hire.
One Task Force case was recently disposed of in court. Alex Logan Gay pled guilty to two of three felony counts against him. Gay was sentenced after members of the Task Force and Wyoming Police executed a search warrant at Gay’s home, on Glen Oak Drive, in Wyoming. The 23-year-old was arrested in March 2012 and was charged with three counts of controlled substance possession. He pled guilty to felony fourth degree and fifth degree possession with intent to sell and a third count was dismissed by Judge Robert Rancourt. Gay is to serve 45 days in county jail, can do work release or Sentence to Serve if he qualifies and must submit to random testing. He pays a $1,200 fine and is not to use any controlled substance or alcohol and participate in a rehabilitation program.