‘A never ending battle’: Rusk County Sheriff says Texas law enforcement are overwhelmed with drug flow at border

Local News

HENDERSON, Texas (KETK) – Dozens of bottles of promethazine were taken from a man in Rusk County.

These products would have been worth more than $32,000 if sold on the street.

“It’s starting to be on the rise, I don’t really understand why because it’s been around for a while,” said Kevin Bisnette, a Henderson Police Officer.

The bottles were stolen off of a pharmaceutical truck in Houston.

The is the same city where Rusk County Sheriff Johnwayne Valdez worked in narcotics for almost a decade.

From the border to here in East Texas, the sheriff says leaders are exhausted in their uphill fight against the constant drug flow from Mexico.

“We talked to a lot of the border sheriffs. We had a huge conference just talking to the border sheriffs. The word overwhelmed doesn’t even begin to describe what those sheriffs are having to go through right now,” said Valdez.

A variety of drugs like cocaine, fentanyl and meth are all being snuck in.

“They’re getting it across this border by the 18 wheeler loads or by the four or five kilos at a time, and we simply can’t keep up,” added Valdez.

The problem for East Texans is what happens when these substances are transported up north.

“This is going up north like, Illinois, Chicago, Kentucky, Nebraska , New York. It’s going further north, up states,” said Jon Randolph, the Mount Enterprise Marshal.

The drugs are being kept in smaller cities, so they won’t be easily detected by officers. This creates an environment where East Texans can become addicted to drugs like promethazine.

The use of many of these types of drugs can cause overdoses leading to hospitalizations and even death.

“I mean narcotics it’s a multi billion dollar industry, and it’s getting worse and worse every year,” said Randolph.

For now, East Texas law enforcement are trying to slow down the spread.

“They’re sitting on tons of it across that border, siting on it filtering it in. They know what they’re doing. We just don’t have enough man power to be able to take it all,” said Sheriff Valdez.

He also said if the governor asked for help at the border, he wouldn’t just send some of his deputies he would also go there himself.

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