LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Congressman Jodey Arrington met with top officials with Lubbock’s law enforcement community Monday morning. The congressman joined Lubbock County Sheriff Kelly Rowe, Lubbock Police Chief Greg Stevens and Department of Public Safety Commander Gary Albus to discuss border security and narcotics, and their ongoing impact on West Texas.
After their meeting, they held a news conference to answer questions on what they discussed.
“We have a crisis - a national security and humanitarian crisis at our southern border,” Arrington said in his opening statement, “In this case, border security, or the lack of, and the pouring in from across our border. People, crimes, criminals, gangs, drugs - How is this playing out in my hometown and the communities that I represent?”
Each law enforcement office represented had a chance to speak about the meeting and how Lubbock and surrounding communities are impacted.
“Since 2014 there’s been nothing but a steady increase of all of the major narcotics.” said Sheriff Rowe. He also said there are about 1,200 inmates in the Lubbock County Jail, and more than 70 percent of those there are in for an addiction to something or some type of drug.
“The root of a lot of the criminal activity and the property crime and even the violent crime, is drugs,” said Arrington, "We’re having more and more people addicted to the drugs that are coming across the border.
Chief Stevens said since 2011 there has been a spike in local crime, specifically property and violent crimes. “We’re taking down major drug seizures. Pounds and pounds. You know 20, 40, 60 pounds of methamphetamine. That was unheard of decades ago. Five years ago. We’re taking down that large of seizures in residential neighborhoods in Lubbock. In a 3-bedroom, 2 bath house on a common residential street. And finding guns, money - it’s nothing I have ever seen in my near 30-year law enforcement career.”
The local agencies have specifically worked with their federal counterparts to catch criminals, such as with Lubbock’s Texas Anti-Gang or TAG Center.
Arrington said he will take the information he received Monday back with him to Congress when they reconvene next Monday.
WATCH FULL NEWS CONFERENCE BELOW: