Lowndes Sheriff hosts state D.A.R.E. officers - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Lowndes Sheriff hosts state D.A.R.E. officers

July 12, 2007

Valdosta - New illegal drugs are constantly hitting the streets.

Like Purple Drank, a mixture of cough medicine and codeine.  Or cheese. The drug you get from combining heroin with cold medicine.

Both are extremely addictive and extremely deadly.

But Georgia's finest are working hard to stay ahead of the game.  "They've learned to adapt as society changes and different technique have come about. Then we've always been able to put those into supplemental programs," says Sgt Jim Griffin, Coordinator of the DARE Program at the Lowndes County Sheriff's Office and Vice President of the Georgia D.A.R.E. Officers Association.

This week over 100 D.A.R.E. officers from all over the state came to Lowndes County to participate in these programs. They'll take what they've learned here in this classroom to classrooms throughout the state.

All with one goal in mind.  "Teach children the techniques to resist drugs and violence," says Darlene Roberts, State Coordinator of the D.A.R.E. training center.

So far, they believe the program is working.  "Statistics show the program does work. There's a decrease in drugs use, and we are very proud that a lot of officers are so dedicated to this program," she adds.

And if statistics don't show it, their collection of D.A.R.E. cruisers will.  "A lot of the cars don't cost their agencies anything," Sgt Griffin says.  "They are seized from drug dealers. So it's drug money, the drug dealers are in jail, and we are out cruising around in his vehicles."

After today's conference, the officers will be ready to return to the classrooms.  And with their tricked out cruisers to take them there, they have no doubt they'll help educate more kids and keep them drug free through adulthood.

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