Pubdate: Fri, 07 Jul 2017
Source: Moose Jaw Times-Herald (CN SN)
Copyright: 2017 The Moose Jaw Times-Herald Group Inc.
Author: Sarah Ladik
Page: A1


MJPS call recent arrests a success, but more work still to be done

Crystal methamphetamine isn't a newcomer to the Friendly City, but it
does seem to be getting better acquainted with it.

"It's a drug that's much more available than it was even five years
ago," Cpl. Kevin Pilsworth of the Moose Jaw Police Service (MJPS) said
on Thursday. "In the past few years, we've really seen it make its way
onto the map in Moose Jaw."

The last few weeks in particular have seen an upswing in activity,
with two men charged with possession of meth for the purpose of
trafficking since the last weeks of June. The latest bust came just
this last weekend when police executed a search warrant at a residence
and found $2,000-worth of the drug. "This did not happen overnight,"
said Pilsworth. "When you hear about all the problems in major centres
like Calgary, it will eventually get to Moose Jaw too."

He said the drugs are most likely being brought in from out of town,
and that the MJPS is not aware of any permanent gangs operating in the

"We do have organized crime and gangs that come into Moose Jaw," he
said. "I think people understand, that's a fairly common concept."

Drug investigations are often done through project work, where
officers and resources are organized to tackle a specific problem.
Pilsworth said the MJPS has been responding to the drug problems in
Moose Jaw as information and resources become available, and that when
an opportunity presents itself, they try to capitalize on it.

"We've had a couple of recent successes," he said. "And we've been
able to take some of these dangerous drugs off the streets."

Perhaps surprisingly, one of the ways those drugs get off the streets
is when people walk them into the police station. Pilsworth said it
happens on a weekly basis that someone - sometimes a family member who
found it in their residence, sometimes a person who found it on the
sidewalk - will come in with a baggie of some unknown-but-suspicious
substance. Although this has been helpful, he said, the nature of the
drugs circulating now make them very dangerous to handle.

"You just don't know what it is," he said, noting that the last year
has seen police forces across the country start equipping their
members with medication like Naloxone that combats the effects of
opioid exposure. "It's a lot more dangerous (to handle) now than it

So instead of taking any found narcotics to the police, Pilsworth said
people should call the station right away and officers will be sent to
pick it up safely.

"We're grateful for the community's help, but we don't want members of
the public handling it at all," he said.

The prevalence of meth - and whatever else is passing for it - has
driven the price of it down as well. It is now as readily available as
other less-exotic drugs like cocaine. Pilsworth said that while the
drug itself is dangerous enough, it's whatever it might be mixed with
that is truly concerning.

"You have people thinking they're taking one drug and in reality it's
something quite different," he said. "It's extremely risky behaviour."
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