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RCMP operation takes a bite out of Vernon drug crime

Officers seized 30 ounces of fentanyl, 10 ounces of meth, more than 300 prescription pills, $5K

A six-day covert operation saw police execute 18 arrest warrants and 97 investigations into downtown Vernon drug operations recently.

Officers from several units worked together in uniform and plain clothes to provide an enhanced policing presence downtown and in problem areas of Vernon.

The Targeted Policing Unit, consisting of officers from the Downtown Enforcement Unit, Prolific Offender Unit and Drug Section, executed the operation in support of the the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP strategic plan priority of public safety.

The Enhanced Downtown Enforcement Initiative utilizes the expertise of the detachment’s Crime Analyst to identify crime series and priority offenders in order to focus resources in areas which will have the greatest impact on reducing crime. The police officers target a variety of issues including trespass/loitering, open drug use, street level drug trafficking, possession of weapons, compliance with court-imposed conditions and locating persons wanted on warrants of arrest.

The initiative was partly funded through the Special Investigation and Targeted Enforcement (SITE) program and was a huge success with an immediate impact on community safety, said Sgt. Dave Evans, of the Targeted Policing Unit.

SITE is a three-year pilot initiative of the British Columbia Ministry of Public Safety & Solicitor General to provide centralized funds for operational support to law enforcement agencies.

The success of the initiative was seen in the results with the team executing 18 arrest warrants and initiating 97 police investigations including:

  • Four new charges for breach of court-imposed conditions;
  • One charge of driving while prohibited;
  • One charge of obstruct a police officer;
  • 13 weapons seizures including tasers, bear spray, carbon fiber brass knuckles, and knives; and
  • Five possession of drugs for the purpose of trafficking investigations including the seizure of over 30 ounces of fentanyl, more than 10 ounces of methamphetamine, over three ounces of cocaine, more than 300 believed to be prescription pills, as well as over $5,000 and other evidence of drug trafficking.

These investigations are ongoing with anticipation of criminal charges.

The Vernon North Okanagan RCMP is committed to fostering safer communities through evidence based, targeted and collaborative enforcement.

Jennifer Smith

About the Author: Jennifer Smith

20-year-Morning Star veteran
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