COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Franklin County law enforcement is cracking down on crime. Over a span of 24 hours on Thursday, deputies and officers made felony arrests, drug seizures and more.
It’s all part of Operation Unity—a multi-agency effort to reduce violent crime. The Franklin County Chiefs’ Association came together to make the blitz happen.
“A Columbus crime problem is a Whitehall crime problem, and then a Whitehall crime problem is a Gahanna and Reynoldsburg and Columbus problem,” Whitehall Police Chief Mike Crispen said.
They say a blitz approach takes staffing, coordination and planning.
“It’s a pretty big operation when you take every agency having to do the same thing and put it together at one time,” Franklin County Sheriff Dallas Baldwin said.
Numbers from 15 agencies involved in Operation Unity
- 32 Education events
- 39 warrant arrests
- 6 use of force inciduents
- 105 physical arrests (includes 38 felony arrests)
- 361 Traffic Stops
- 122 traffic citations
- 8 Illegal weapons
- 5 OVI arrests
“We always do have the drug seizures, but we had more stops, which results in more drug seizures, more weapons, more arrests, a lot of no operator’s license, a lot of those were way up,” Sheriff Baldwin said.
Whitehall’s numbers show 11 felony arrests. Authorities also recovered drugs, guns and a stolen car. Chief Crispen said it’s not just about the blitzes but also about reversing a rising trend.
“One of the reasons we even want to really start picking this back up right now is the trend of violent crime is going up around us, the trends of stolen vehicles is just really off the charts right now compared to what we’ve had in the last five, six, seven years,” Chief Crispen said.
He said the number of kids stealing cars is up an estimated 900% in the last two years.
“That’s the trend we’re seeing that makes us say we got to do this together, we got to work together,” Chief Crispen said.
The departments said Operation Unity is also about connecting with the community, which includes sharing what they are doing and hearing from people about what they want addressed.
County wide numbers from Operation Unity are being collected throughout the day on Friday, July 14.