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Police crackdown on meth trafficking in McDonough County

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What's called "Operation Icy Road" continues in McDonough County, where police said drug problems are very high throughout the community.

MACOMB (WGEM) -- What's called "Operation Icy Road" continues in McDonough County, where police said drug problems are very high throughout the community.

New arrests have made in connection to drug trafficking in an effort to keep methamphetamine off the streets.

It's a beautiful day in Chandler Park in Macomb.

"This is what our community is about," Macomb resident Debbie Coghill said.

Coghill is spending time with her grand niece and nephew. She said while it may not be visible from the outside, she's aware of the methamphetamine problem in Macomb.

"It's a terrible, terrible drug," Coghill said. "Once you get started on that, it's awful to try and get off of it."

The methamphetamine that's moving through county is prompting local law enforcement and federal agencies to continue efforts to stop it.

Six people were recently arrested in connection to methamphetamine trafficking in the ongoing "Operation Icy Road" investigation.

"It's a good way for us to get people who are distributing methamphetamine off the streets for a period of time," McDonough County Sheriff Nick Petitgout said.

While opioids seem to take center stage in many towns, Petitgout said meth is the drug of choice in his community.

"It's a trickle down effect from Chicago, to Peoria to Galesburg to Macomb," Petitgout said.

Police said they don't plan to stop anytime soon. They said when drug distributers are on the streets, it negatively impacts the entire community, as often times, drugs are linked to crime.

"Methamphetamine really impacts our community," Chief Curt Barker with the Macomb Police Department said. "A lot of individuals are using that. When they get to the point where they can't afford it anymore, they start committing car burglaries, residential burglaries and thefts, in order to come up with the money to continue their habit."

Police said when they catch distributors, it often leads to more arrests, which is why they said this investigation is far from over.

It's a drug task force that Coghill said is needed.

"They need to continue to do what they're doing and catch it early," Coghill said.

Police said the goal is to get the distributors off the street for a long period of time.

They said the people recently arrested could face up to 30 years in prison.

RELATED:

Seven arrested for meth after six month investigation in McDonough County

Police fight growing meth problem in McDonough County

Kara Biernat

Kara Biernat is a MultiMedia Journalist for WGEM News.

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