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Cooperation between law enforcement led to 742 fugitives being taken off the streets in the Western District of Virginia, making the area safer for us all.
That cooperation obviously paid off, so why don't local, state and federal authorities work together more often?
Three of our local police departments joined forces with various other agencies under the direction of the U.S. Marshal Service for a month-long fugitive apprehension effort last month.
Operation FALCON is proof that, when it comes to catching criminals, two heads — or in this case, dozens — are always better than one.
Officers arrested 18 fugitives for sexual offenses, 15 for sexual assaults, two for failure to register as a sex offender — that's 35 sex criminals off the streets of the Western District of Virginia alone, along with warrants served on many more.
"When law enforcement agencies combine their resources, the greater good of society always comes out on top," said U.S. Marshal Wayne Pike.
Among other arrests were fugitives connected with assaults, homicides, kidnappings, narcotics and weapons.
Items seized included four firearms, cash, vehicles and drugs that could have landed in the hands of Twin County residents.
That's a big payoff for a month's work.
Deputy U.S. Marshal Jim Satterwhite said he hoped this operation encouraged state and local officers to call on the marshals — who can cross jurisdictional boundaries with ease — more often.
We agree. Police officers take pride in their communities and work hard to keep them safe, but there's no shame in bringing in outside help. Seeking federal assistance is just another tool to protect citizens, and everyone is working toward the same ultimate goal.
Our thanks go out to our local men and women who serve on the various police departments for keeping us safe.
Though the streets will never be completely free of crime, our local law enforcement officers work hard to keep the bad guys where they belong — behind bars.