Beth Thomas, South Oklahoma City
Context: Thomas is tired of seeing members of her community fall victim to drug addiction, including “ice,” or crystal meth. People have come to her property and stolen from her so they could sell the items to buy drugs. She wants more police presence as long as it is not too forceful.
Paco Balderrama, Oklahoma City Police Department Spokesman
Context: Balderrama said the department has a street-level narcotic unit called Impact that focuses on drugs and drug-related crimes. Eliminating drug abuse in a neighborhood involves more than just patrolling the streets. Officers must go undercover and get specific information before they can make arrests, and that often takes time. He said more drug education and mental health services would help reduce drug abuse and improve neighborhood safety.
A Deeper Look:
Methamphetamine in Oklahoma
This chart shows that while law enforcement agencies are finding fewer methamphetamine labs, the number of deaths continue to increase.