Southern Maine Cops Try To Keep Up With Drug Flow


A busy pipeline from Mexico is moving heroin and cocaine to emerging markets as far away as coastal Maine, where more and more addicts fill courtrooms, jail cells, treatment facilities, and morgues, reports the Los Angeles Times. “It’s just unbelievable what we’ve seen here,” said Edward Strong, police chief in Kittery. “I can remember when people around here didn’t know what the word ‘heroin’ meant. Now, it’s everywhere — cheaper, more available and demand is high.”

Detectives from three departments in southern Maine have banded together to create an unofficial partnership, impishly dubbing themselves the Seacoast Narcotics Interdiction Force, or SNIF. Although their home cities have a combined population of only 40,000, they’ve shut down several local heroin and cocaine rings and racked up dozens of arrests in three states. Says one officer: “You could have 30 guys at every police department doing drug enforcement and you still couldn’t keep up.”

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