MORGANTOWN – The Northern District of the West Virginia U.S. Attorney’s office has opened 81 methamphetamine cases that involve 101 defendants. Those statistics are about 45 percent of the total case load.
The case load has prompted U.S. attorney Bill Powell to label methamphetamine as the most problematic drug in the Mountain State and request money from the federal government via the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area program to help fund the campaign.
Investigators have formed task forces across the state comprised local police, FBI and DEA agents.
In Morgantown, police chief Ed Preston says, “Methamphetamine is starting to replace and overtake opioids for quantity of abuse because of the changing international drug markets and availability. The greater the availability, the lower the price, the more it becomes abused locally.” Preston served for two years in the Appalachian Hideout Drug Task Force the covers West Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky.
Preston says tips from the public help detectives identify, investigate and hopefully remove dealers and their drugs from the streets.
In 2018 police seized 206 grams of heroin and 790 grams of methamphetamine from a Star City home. Two men from Philadelphia were arrested in that case.