Rep. Kristi Noem today announced her support for several new bills that aim to strengthen law enforcement and combat drug trafficking.  The legislative action was announced during a visit to the Minnehaha County Sherriff’s Office this afternoon where Noem toured the jail and participated in a ride-along with deputies.

 “Levels of violent crime in South Dakota have risen steadily over at least the past decade,” said Noem.  “I am committed to ensuring our dedicated law enforcement officers have tools at their disposal to combat drug trafficking, address the uptick in rapes and other violent crimes that South Dakota has seen in recent years, and ultimately ensure our families and communities are safe.”

 “I certainly appreciate Congresswoman Noem taking the time to sit down with me and some of my key staff in order for her to learn more about the many issues and challenges local law enforcement faces,” said Sheriff Milstead. “We were able to discuss the meth epidemic here and how it is impacting our City and County.  We also talked about a number of key bills she is co-sponsoring in Congress, including bills to provide additional resources to secure our borders from drug traffickers as well as expanding on the COPS program to better recruit and train Veterans into law enforcement careers.”

 According to the most recent data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the rate of violent crimes in South Dakota nearly doubled between 2005 and 2015.

 To address the crime wave, Noem is fighting for reforms as a cosponsor of the following:

  • H.R.1428, American Law Enforcement Heroes Act, which opens additional funding for police departments to hire and train career law enforcement officers.  More specifically, the bill allows Community Oriented Policing Services Program grants to be used for these purposes and encourages the prioritization of hiring and training veterans.
  • H.R.1741, Transnational Criminal Organization Illicit Spotter Prevention and Elimination Act, which makes it illegal to “spot” for drug traffickers at the border. Without this change, helping drug traffickers avoid law enforcement when crossing the U.S.-Mexico border (known as “spotting”) is not an enforceable offense.
  • H.R.22, Support More Assets, Resources, and Technology on the Border Act (SMART Act), which authorizes the deployment of additional personnel and new technologies to secure the border. This includes an authorization for as many as 10,000 additional members of the National Guard to be deployed to the border.
  • H.R.1057, Synthetics Trafficking ad Overdose Prevention Act (STOP Act), which is designed to help stop dangerous synthetic drugs like fentanyl and carfentanil from being shipped through our borders to drug traffickers in the U.S.

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