DEFUNIAK SPRINGS (Fla.) — More than 37 residents have been arrested after an undercover narcotics investigation in DeFuniak Springs taking place over the past year.
Dubbed Operation Dry Ice, nearly six phases have been ongoing for about nine months.
With all the arrests the DeFuniak Springs Police Department made, officials said they are nowhere near complete.
“We obviously have a drug problem just like about every city in the Panhandle,” said DeFuniak Springs City Marshal.
The idea is to eliminate drugs on the streets and put dealers behind bars.
“Starting this operation, I knew we had a problem with methamphetamine,” said Hurley. “But we have come to find out there is about as much heroin and fentanyl on the street as there is meth at times.”
Some of those suspects are charged multiple times, totaling 91 charges in selling, delivering, or trafficking meth and heroin.
“A lot of the charges were within a close proximity of a school or a church, so the thing unique to DeFuniak is we have a church or a school about on every corner,” said Hurley.
That increases the penalties, but Hurley said they do not target certain areas.
There is a large cost involved when a department works in an undercover operation for months at a time. But all hands are on deck.
“We’ve got to pay for the drugs we buy,” said Hurley. “You’ve got to pay for informage you’ve got to pay for equipment.”
Hurley said if you need addiction help, do not wait until an arrest.
“Reach out to me, I am more than willing to bend over backward and find any resource we can to help these people,” he said.
With all of the arrests that they have made within Operation Dry Ice, Chief Hurley said it has already been making a difference in the community. There have been fewer break-ins so far within the community that is just the beginning.