Multiple investigations lead to seizures of weapons and illegal drugs for Unified Narcotics Enforcement Team

Pennco Methbust

Photo Courtesy Pennington County Sheriff Facebook

PENNINGTON COUNTY, S.D. – The fourth quarter of 2020 was a productive and successful quarter for the Unified Narcotics Enforcement Team (UNET), a multi-agency drug task force operated as part of the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation.

From October to December, 2020, UNET seized the following:

  • 14 illegal firearms or illegally possessed firearms
  • 32+ pounds of methamphetamine
  • 56+ grams of heroin
  • 4.3+ pounds of cocaine

The UNET’s primary responsibility is the investigation of illegal drug trafficking organizations.

Agency partners include the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation, Rapid City Police Department, Pennington County Sheriff’s Office, South Dakota Highway Patrol and federal partners to include the Drug Enforcement Administration, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Homeland Security Investigations and the South Dakota National Guard.

The goal is to identify, disrupt and dismantle organizations involved in the distribution of illegal narcotics.

Specific details of investigations will not be released, as they are ongoing, and releasing details could damage the viability of those cases.

“Our team encompasses many agencies with the shared goal of stemming the tide of illegal drugs and weapons in our communities,” said UNET supervisor Sergeant Casey Kenrick, “Our goal is to make the communities of western South Dakota a safer place to live by arresting and helping convict drug traffickers in our area, in other states and even into foreign countries.”

Pennington County Sheriff Kevin Thom said, “Sometimes the results of drug investigations are not readily apparent to the public, but be assured the hard work of UNET reduces crime.”

Rapid City Police Chief Don Hedrick praised the teamwork of the multiple agencies involved in fighting drugs. “Working as a team, we accomplish far more than any one agency could. UNET is a force multiplier to better serve our citizens and tax payers.”

Categories: Crime, Local News, South Dakota News