Multiple law enforcement agencies participate in Operation City Take Back, 14 individuals arrested

Multiple law enforcement agencies participate in Operation City Take Back, 14 individuals...
Multiple law enforcement agencies participate in Operation City Take Back, 14 individuals arrested(Source: Muscogee Co. Sheriff's Office)
Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 5:37 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - A joint law enforcement task force, called Operation City Take Back, resulted in the arrest of 14 individuals, several warrants and the seizure of multiple handguns.

According to the Muscogee Sheriff’s Office, the focus of this operation was disrupt organized gang activity and remove identified violent offenders in areas with numerous complaints regarding open air drug distribution, prostitution, burglaries, reckless driving, and more.

Gang members account for 5 of the 14 persons arrested during this operation.

Multiple task forces around Georgia and Alabama, which included agents, investigators, and officers from the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, DEA, and the Georgia Department of Community Supervision, executed search warrants resulting in 14 arrests, with 2 being minors, 6 warrants, and the seizure of 6 handguns between September 22-23.

The individuals taken into custody as part of the operation were charged with various charges such as possession of firearms, reckless driving and child endangerment, obstruction, DUI, among others.

“As we are of the public, the concerns of the public are also the concerns of the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office. As a follow-up to Operation Washout River City, Operation City Take Back will be part of our ongoing efforts to address quality of life complaints from residents and remove violent offenders from our community,” Sheriff Greg Countryman said. “As Sheriff of Muscogee County, I implore the community to continue to call in and voice your concerns to our Anonymous Tip line at 706-225-4285. All calls are screened and treated as confidential. By working together, we can take back every problem neighborhood, block by block”.

This task force was a follow up to Operation Washout River City that took place in August, which resulted in 57 arrests.

During the operation, law enforcement seized 6 firearms that will be referred to the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for federal prosecution.

John Wade with the Muscogee County Sheriff’s office tells us, we can expect to see more operations like this one.

“This will be ongoing and continuous. We’re setting the tone,” said Wade. “As we continue to get complaints from the community, we’re going to continue doing these types of actions. The community wants to see action, and we’re going to give them just that.”

According to Wade, this operation was a continuation from a previous joint law enforcement task force - Operation Wash Out River City.

As a result of that operation, 57 people were arrested, over 120 warrants were executed and multiple handguns and drugs were taken off the street.

Sheriff Greg Countryman joined WTVM anchor Barbara Gauthier in studio to explain Operation City Take Back.

Watch the full interview below.

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