Trust and Teamwork Help Shut Down Drug Operation in Tigard
Tigard Police Officer Brian Imus, who serves as a School Resource Officer (SRO) at Tigard High School, makes a point of interacting with students when he sees them in the school’s hallways, cafeteria, at football games and other events. “It’s important to build those relationships and for students to know they can trust me,” says Imus. “I want them to see that I’m there for them and the community.”
That level of trust lead one concerned student to provide early information about where peers were buying Xanax, Oxycodone and other prescription drugs. Imus confronted the alleged dealer who attended the school, finding nothing incriminating at that time. He encouraged this teen to change course before his actions adversely impacted his future. The activity continued and was later corroborated when another buyer tipped off Tigard Police Detective Chris Haynes and the members of Washington County’s Westside Interagency Narcotics (WIN) team.
WIN focuses their efforts on larger scale drug operations or high impact cases in the county with the intent of significantly disrupting the local drug trade. With one Tigard Police Department detective assigned to the team, Tigard can tap into WIN’s impressive resources and expertise to address problems in our neighborhoods.
WIN’s subsequent investigation of the tip uncovered high-volume drug sales to teens out of the student’s home in Tigard. WIN worked with the SRO to detain the student at the school while the team served a search warrant at the home and collected enough evidence for an arrest.
Prescription drug abuse has led to the opioid epidemic of addiction and overdoses, devastating communities across the country. Tigard benefits greatly by having some of our officers serving in our schools as SROs and others as members of WIN. The SROs encourage healthy behaviors and address low-level problems with drugs before they escalate but if things do escalate, as in this situation, WIN’s involvement was necessary to shut down the supply of prescription drugs to kids in our community, so they don’t become a part of this trend.