DUNCAN, Okla._Several law enforcement agencies worked to together early Friday morning and hauled off quite a few wanted drug dealers and users.
Following a nine-month investigation, undercover officers with the Stephens County District Attorney's Drug Task Force and the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics executed the drug sweep at 5:00 a.m. Friday. They went house-to-house with local law enforcement, and arrested 26 of the 48 people they were looking for.
These criminals know they are wanted, and spend most of their days hiding out or running from the law. So, investigators say the art of surprise, while these guys are still sleeping, works in their favor.
Stephens County District Attorney Jason Hicks says these officers suited up and headed out with one goal in mind.
"We are not going to tolerate this and it has been a very focused and intense investigation. Forty-eight people coming off the streets all at one time for distribution of meth should have an impact on drug trade here in Stephens County," Hicks said.
This drug sweep was one of the county's largest. Stephens County Sheriff Wayne McKinney says this sweep spanned the county. People from rural areas, Marlow, Duncan and Comanche are all now behind bars, a place many of them have been before.
"A lot of these people I've seen before, they've been in and out of our jail on other occasions. So, it is a reoccurring problem," Sheriff McKinney said.
And that's exactly why Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics director Darrell Weaver says it's so important for law enforcement to work together to keep these guys and methamphetamine off the streets.
"Rarely do methamphetamine traffickers and dealers go away on their own, and that's what we have to do. We have to keep up in a unified effort against these folks," Weaver said.
That's why Hicks says one of the things his district is focusing on is putting drug dealers away.
"We are doing what we can to combat this poison, if you will, inside our community and get it off the streets," Hicks said.
"That was the big thing today that we took off a lot of methamphetamine traffickers, dealers, the people that are actually distributing these drugs are our kids and other people in the county," said McKinney.
At last check, the District Attorney's Office says no other arrests have been made since Friday morning's drug sweep. However, authorities are actively searching for the wanted men and women who eluded them.
In all, eight agencies assisted in the drug sweep. Right now, it is unclear just how much meth was seized when officers made their arrests.
The following is a list of people involved in the drug sweep. Out of the 48, 26 were arrested Friday morning.