The goal of a drug investigation usually includes arresting a known drug dealer and taking or seizing the assets gained through illegal measures. Law enforcement usually only works with mid-level drug dealers; however, sometimes police officers enter the realm of street-level drug offenses, which are typically handled more severely. This includes closing crack houses or arresting large-scale drug dealers. Because these crimes take place on many different levels, all drugs are subject to investigations, including: marijuana, heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, ecstasy, and more.
Drugs and vide divisions of local county police departments handle drug investigations. These departments are usually incredibly large, in not only their number of police officers, but also funding and resources available. Funds pay for things like drug purchase money and informant payments.
How a Drug Investigation is Conducted
Investigations take place solely because of the information that these departments receive from their inside sources. This information comes from officers on the street, members of the community, informants, and other agencies. Many different people who are a part of these agencies work together to follow the trends in drugs and drug-related crimes in specific jurisdictions.
In many cases, you may be surprised to find that some of the most likely informants of drug-related activity are local community members. In many cases, a concerned citizen is the one who comes forward with helpful information to provide law enforcement and put a defendant behind bars. These citizens are able to remain anonymous about their activity, usually not even using caller identification or recorded phone calls. Many departments are just pleased that they have received tips, intelligence, and useful information to make an arrest.
If you have been charged with a drug-related crime, you may have had questions about how this process works. This has been an inside look at how a drug investigation kicks off, which could tell you a little more about your case.