Conference focuses on security threats in Ohio communities, prisons

The Corrections and Law Enforcement Security Threat Group Conference brought together agencies from across the state.

GROVE CITY, Ohio — The Corrections and Law Enforcement Security Threat Group Conference in Grove City brought together a wide swath of law enforcement, corrections officers and prosecutors to learn about the latest trends and strategies to fight gang violence, drug cartel activity, domestic terrorism and other security threats in the state.

“Whether it’s coming from the border, whether it’s coming from the prisons, whether it’s coming from gangs in our streets, we are at risk for violent crime,” Ohio Department of Public Safety Director Andy Wilson said.

That’s why Wilson says Monday’s conference is so important. He gave parole officers as an example of a key cog in the crime fighting system. 

“They have the direct link into the prison. They work for DRC, but they’re also out in the communities and they work with the local law enforcement out in the communities.”

Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections Director Annette Chambers-Smith oversees a state prison system where she says 71% of inmates are convicted of violent crimes and where gangs and drug smuggling are constant concerns. 

“So, something like this (conference) will cause us to get together, learn what each of us knows, learn what intel we have and help grow those networks that make us stronger in terms of trying to fight this type of crime.”

“The violent crimes are committed by a relatively small number of our criminal element,” Ohio Governor Mike DeWine said.

He says targeting them is critical.

The state now has collaborative weapons to do that. The governor listed the Ohio Narcotics Intelligence Center, which works to disrupt the illegal drug market, the Crime Gun Intelligence Center, which focuses on gun violence in local communities, and law enforcement surge operations where State Highway Patrol, parole officers and Liquor Control officers surge into communities to help local law enforcement.   

“The results we’ve seen is we’ve been able to capture guns, we’ve been able to get felons who are not supposed to have guns, who have been found with guns, we’ve been able to lock them back up,” DeWine said. 

The governor says the state has not had a conference like this for about 20 years, and it was time. He says the state will have more of them to allow agencies to continue to network.

Local News: Recent Coverage ⬇️

https://youtube.com/watch?v=videoseries&list=PL3ksqgTjfUaYfXfxQH982djs6LlrSbKDZ

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