Weeding out lower level offenders, EPD responds to critics over - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Weeding out lower level offenders, EPD responds to critics over recent marijuana arrests

(WFIE) (WFIE)
EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) -

There has been criticism over a pound of pot.  Evansville Police arrested two people at a Mary Street apartment Wednesday. But, when authorities announced the arrests, some critics questioned their tactics on social media.

EPD fired back, with a blunt message for critics of those recent marijuana arrests.

[PREVIOUS: EPD: Pair caught with pound of pot in Evansville apartment]

Just this past year, Evansville has seen a spike in violence, gun crimes, and murders. Police say many of those high-profile crimes link back to weed.

"We don't care what's in that baggy," EPD Sgt. Jason Cullum told 14 News. "If it's causing people to pull guns, to shoot at each other, and it's leading to people's death, what's in the bag makes no difference to us."

EPD says it's targeting some of the areas most violent criminals with its new "VIPER" Unit, and they're also looking to get a handle on violent crime by weeding out lower level offenders like marijuana dealers. 

"A lot of the response was: it was just weed, and we're wasting our resources," Sgt. Cullum told us after looking through the comments on social media.

[PREVIOUS: EPD's new VIPER unit targeting violent criminals]

Some social media users wrote on the Department's Facebook page saying crime would go down if lawmakers legalized marijuana. One person wrote, "no one has ever robbed a bank or killed anyone from smoking marijuana."

Killing over marijuana? That's exactly the problem, according to police. Sgt. Cullum told 14 News there were multiple murders last year linking back to drug deals involving pot: Donald Freels, Chris Hoefling, Michael Pardee.

Those are some of the lives lost in Evansville from marijuana deals.

Police say crime statistics show, it's not just a harmless drug.

"This social argument about marijuana and whether it should be legalized or taxed is a mute point to the Evansville Police Department," said Sgt. Cullum.

Below is Evansville Police Department's full statement posted on social media Wednesday:

Police say they're taking every kind of drug-related activity seriously, especially since 2017 turned out to be one of the deadliest years in Evansville's history.

Copyright 2018. WFIE. All rights reserved.

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Man admits wife's murder, blames her for daughters' deaths

    Man admits wife's murder, blames her for daughters' deaths

    Tuesday, August 21 2018 12:15 AM EDT2018-08-21 04:15:23 GMT
    Tuesday, August 21 2018 6:44 AM EDT2018-08-21 10:44:26 GMT
    Christopher Watts, 33, faces three first-degree murder charges, two counts of murdering a child under 12, one count of unlawful termination of a pregnancy and three counts of tampering with a deceased human body. (Source: Weld County Sheriff/KMGH/CNN)Christopher Watts, 33, faces three first-degree murder charges, two counts of murdering a child under 12, one count of unlawful termination of a pregnancy and three counts of tampering with a deceased human body. (Source: Weld County Sheriff/KMGH/CNN)

    The father of two told police in court papers released Monday that he killed his pregnant wife after witnessing her strangling one of the girls on a baby monitor.

    More >>

    The father of two told police in court papers released Monday that he killed his pregnant wife after witnessing her strangling one of the girls on a baby monitor.

    More >>
  • Woman killed by alligator on Hilton Head Island

    Woman killed by alligator on Hilton Head Island

    Monday, August 20 2018 10:54 PM EDT2018-08-21 02:54:00 GMT

    A woman was attacked and killed by an alligator Monday morning in the Sea Pines area on Hilton Head Island.

    More >>

    A woman was attacked and killed by an alligator Monday morning in the Sea Pines area on Hilton Head Island.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly