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Ohio State Highway Patrol enforcement impacts highway crime

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — Through effective traffic enforcement, the Ohio State Highway Patrol is significantly impacting criminal activity on the state’s roadways.

Troopers are trained to look beyond the initial traffic stop for possible indicators of criminal activity.

In 2020, the OSHP investigated a wide range of felony offenses that led to 6,133 felony arrests.

There was a 30 percent increase in incidents involving illegal weapons, resulting in the removal of 1,743 firearms from Ohio’s roadways in 2020.

Along with weapons, troopers removed 6,162 pounds of marijuana, more than double the amount taken in 2019. Troopers also confiscated 225 pounds of methamphetamine and 129 pounds of fentanyl. Seizures such as 18,843 opiate pills, 9,202 depressant pills, 3,006 stimulant pills and 1,692 hallucinogen pills surpassed 2019 totals.

“The OSHP is an important partner in Ohio’s work to prevent violent crime and to hold drug traffickers accountable as part of my administration’s RecoveryOhio initiative,” Gov. Mike DeWine stated.

“Ohio’s transportation network makes our state a gateway to other parts of the country, and unfortunately, traffickers use our highways as they transport deadly drugs and other contraband. Every time our troopers confiscate illegal guns or narcotics during a traffic stop, it has a direct impact on the safety of our communities and our families.”

In addition, troopers successfully removed 1,471 stolen vehicles, a 23 percent increase from 2019.

“Every day our troopers are on Ohio’s roads, removing felons and criminal activity from our communities,” Lt. Maurice Waddell, commander of the St. Clairsville post, said.

“By looking beyond the traffic stop, troopers are able to keep illegal items out of our communities.”

To report illegal drug activity and highway crimes such as illegal weapons and stolen vehicles, contact the patrol at #677.

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