Wednesday, August 8, 2012
A weekend drug bust in Andover led to the arrest of three Wichita men and police seized three different drugs.
One of those drugs, heroin, has law enforcement officers in south-central Kansas concerned about its increased presence in the Midwest.
Butler County Sheriff Kelly Herzet is concerned about an increase in heroin moving through the area. He is worried about overdose deaths and other problems. Herzet is not alone in his concern.
"I can tell you that I've been in Butler County for probably 15 years and this is as much heroin in the last year that I've seen in my entire career," said Andover Police Capt. Justin Phillips.
He is among many in the law enforcement community concerned about the increasing amount of heroin found during drug arrests in Kansas.
Phillips said the drug is more commonly found along the east and west coasts of the U.S.
"I think we know it's around," Phillips said. "We just don't necessarily see it as much as the more popular drugs in the area, like methamphetamine or cocaine."
Heroin was one of three drugs found when Andover Police officers and Butler County Sheriff's Deputies arrested three Wichita men following two separate investigations Saturday night near U.S. 54 and Andover Road.
Arrested were Michael Perkins, 30, who was arrested on suspicion of selling heroin; Wilfred Kostis, 49, who was arrested on suspicion of selling cocaine; and Leon Reed, 27, who was arrested for possession of marijuana.
Andover Police and the Butler County Sheriff's Office worked together for nearly a month on these cases. Capt. Phillips said teamwork is a must when combatting drug trafficking.
"We understand that drugs don't stay within the jurisdiction boundaries that we're limited by, so we have to work with other agencies," he said.
Phillips said cracking down on illegal drugs is a challenge for everybody in law enforcement, but it is a challenge, he says, police are up to in order to keep the community safe.
"Ultimately, it's a problem for those people who have loved ones that are using it and for those people who are using it," he said. "It's a horrible thing for any family to have to go through."