When the Attorney General of ND released the 2014 crime statistics report earlier in August, he emphasized that crimes committed against persons such as homicide, assault and rape had increased by a dismal 6.8%. Moreover, he tried hard to convince people that they were in safe hands by revealing that the number of aggravated assaults had decreased for the first time in 10 years and the number of DUI’s had fallen for the second year in a row.
However, he failed to highlight the fact that narcotics related crimes have seen a steady incline, rising by almost 18% between 2013 and 2014. Actually, this has been one of the side effects of the oil boom in the state. Drug cartels and their nefarious activities are turning into a menace in urban as well as rural areas, including the highly industrialized pockets.
The issue is gaining epidemic proportions and this observation is supported by the fact that drug related arrests are up by 18%. Also, there has been a spike in the seriousness of these infractions. The charges filed no longer just pertain to personal possession of illicit substances. They now involve synchronized cartel activity which is endangering the lives of community members.
In fact, so grave is the problem that North Dakota has received congressional funding to control narcotics related criminal activity. Funneled through the office of the Attorney General of the state, the funds are to be used for supporting 11 task forces that are dedicated to fighting drug crimes.
Additionally, law enforcement agencies are also being given access to state of the art technology such as weaponized drones. The police from North Dakota will be the first in the country to use such aerial devices. Pursuant to ND Bill 1328, law enforcement agencies can use armed UAV’s as long as the weapons are not lethal.