Call for Public to Help Fight Drug Trafficking and Gangs
Prince George, B.C.- The battle against gangs and drug trafficking is a “shared responsibility” says Chief Superintendent Kevin Hackett of the Combined Forces Special Enforcement unit.
(at right, Chief Superintendent Kevin Hackett – photo 250News)
At a news conference in Prince George this morning, he, along with North DIstrict Chief Superintendent Lesley Bain and Solicitor General Mike Morris, called on the public to contact police when they see suspicious behaviours.
“What we rely on is the public to trust their good judgement and their intuition” says Hackett. “Those senses that sometime force you to take a another look at what’s going on in a certain area, often give rise to questions about what’s going on there? Why are there vehicles coming and going at all times of the night? Why do those individuals not seem to have regular jobs? Things of that nature are indicative of drug activities being focused in a specific area or residence.”
“These tips may seem small” says Chief Superintendent Lesley Bain “But they make a big difference in identifying new gang members, or helping police gather information on known gangsters that could lead to the arrest and reduction of risk of violence in our communities”
Individually, pieces of information may not seem significant, but that one piece of information could be the missing piece to complete a larger puzzle “That piece of information could be the tipping point in having that residence shut down” says Hackett.
Solicitor General Mike Morris says tips can help develop the detailed applications needed to be granted authority for wire taps or search warrants, it’s a process that takes time. Morris recalled a quote from a Supreme Court Justice who said “The main event is no longer the guilt or innocence of the accused. The main event is the integrity of the investigation.” He says that is why police are often reluctant to talk about investigations that may be costing millions of dollars “They don’t want to compromise that by releasing information by playing our hand too son in the process.”
While some may be concerned giving a tip to police would put themselves in danger, Chief Superintendent Hackett says that is exactly what the gangs want the public to believe “There are ways and methods we can take that information anonymously” He says if people feel threatened by certain individuals, it is all the more reason to “get our shoulder into the problem to make sure we stamp that out. That’s what they want, they think that through intimidation that everybody is going to go away and we are going to stop doing our jobs, and the opposite is true.”
Chief Superintendent Hackett says progress is being made in the battle against gangs, “I have the honour and privilege to see the work that’s being done across the province, not just from the CFSEU perspective, but from all law enforcement who are completely engaged and committed to doing what they need to do to keep the community safe and there is a tremendous amount of work, skilled, innovative , creative work that’s taking place both in new ways to combat gang violence and criminal activity and traditional methods, so I’m very happy.”
Tips can be made to police through CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS