OHIO VALLEY — The Ohio State Highway Patrol has made a significant impact this year in regard to the criminal element on our public roadways and in our communities. Protocol established over the past few years in Ohio and other states encourages troopers to take extra time during each traffic stop and seek possible indicators of criminal activity — because what on the surface seems to be a rather routine traffic stop can turn into something much more significant.
In 2011, the patrol made 3,573 felony traffic stops. Of these stops, 74 percent involved a trooper “looking beyond the license plate” to detect criminal activity and making a felony arrest. The other 26 percent are attributed to a felony warrant apprehension. In addition, troopers made 6,137 drug arrests in 2011 — 2,885 of which were felony arrests — making up 47 percent of total felony arrests for the year.
“Every day, our troopers are out on the road, taking felons out of our communities,” said Lt. Max Norris, Commander of the Gallia/Meigs Post.
Through April of this year, troopers had made 1,407 felony stops. This is a 17 percent increase when compared to the first four months of 2011. Through April 2012, felony stops had occurred most frequently in Franklin County with 156 arrests, Lorain County with 59 arrests, Fairfield County with 51 arrests and Cuyahoga County with 50 arrests.
Drivers are encouraged to call #677 to report impaired driving or drug activity.