On May 22 a routine traffic stop on Highway 20, which began as a speeding violation ended in the arrests of two male individuals on felony charges of methamphetamine.
This is the latest arrest resulting from increased awareness and patrolling by the Rexburg Police Department in hopes of preventing further drug trafficking and distribution. The Rexburg Police have been training Drug Recognition Enforcement or D.R.E. officers to help the local police in identifying if someone is under the influence of drugs.
“The D.R.E. Officers’ specialization is being able to talk to people and look for clues if these individuals are on narcotics or habituates. Because of the training these officers have received they are more alert to individuals who have the tell tale signs who are under the influence and are making more traffic stops,” said Captain Randy Lewis, of the Rexburg Police Department.
Out of all the arrests that Rexburg police make, 85 percent of them are on Highway 20 dealing with narcotics.
“Highway 20 is a big problem where individuals are carrying drugs,” said Lewis. “I do not believe that Rexburg is pit stop for drug runners or drug dealers. Is it being transported? Yes but again it is not a main stop to distribute drugs,” said Lewis.
Many BYU—Idaho are concerned as they have the perception that they will be pulled over based on their license places or that they are college students. This is not the case here in Rexburg.
“We don’t participate in that sort of enforcement. We do not discriminate on where they are from or who they are. The reason we stop people is they are violating some traffic law. We will run checks on license plates to see if there is a past history before we will pull anyone over if they are not breaking the law, but we will not pull anyone over for no reason,” said Lewis.
The Rexburg police had much praise to give the students here at BYU—Idaho because of the standards that are emphasized.
“With the thousands of students that come here we do not have the problems other communities have because of the standards that are emphasized there. Our biggest problem probably with BYU Idaho students is either shoplifting or alcohol,” said Lewis. “We are not your typical college town where you would expect to see lots of underage drinking and drug use from the students.
There are incidents but they are few and far in between. Is it going on yes, the students that we get in here that we deal with are not bringing the stuff in to sell with. They are mostly using and bringing.”