Dare County ranking high with marijuana possession arrests

Posted at 7:00 PM, Jul 30, 2014

Out of all Hampton Roads plus Northeastern North Carolina,  Dare County is in the lead for most arrests per capita when it comes to marijuana, according to an article in the Washington Post.

"It's an issue everywhere. Dare County is no different than Portsmouth, Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Raleigh," Lt. Kevin Duprey with the Dare County Sheriff's office told NewsChannel 3.

The research says that in Dare County, 899 per 100,000 people were arrested for possession of marijuana. That number doubles Chesapeake's which is 445. Also compared to Virginia Beach's 249 arrests, Dare County's number seems high.

Lt. Duprey says the numbers don't surprise him. He credits the county's combination of agencies who work together to form the Dare County Drug Task Force Team.

"We are just so lucky to have the agencies we have in Dare County from Duck to Manteo Police Department. We are just very blessed to have everyone here that doesn't want the problem of drugs in Dare County," Lt. Duprey says.

But why Dare County, where most people think of the Outer Banks and tourism. Lt. Duprey says that's part of the problem.

"We are an area where someone can come here and be unnoticed 250, 000 a summer is hard for me to drive past someone and say hey that's someone who is doing something illegal so I think it's just an opportunity for people to come down here and not be noticed," he says.

But locals also factor in.

"A lot of times when you're dealing a the distribution of marijuana it's more so the locals that are doing it."

As for the most popular drug right now in the Outer Banks, Lt. Duprey says it's heroin, but marijuana typically accompanies most arrests.

"Marijuana in just about everything we do is always there. Whether we are doing Heroin arrests, cocaine it always seems to be marijuana right along with it whether they're selling it with it or just have it for personal use," he says.

Lt. Duprey thinks it's a problem everyone has, but it's not one that everyone knows about.

"We're lucky enough we are in a beautiful area to make it a little but easier to stomach it where you can go to the beach and not having to worry about who's dealing drugs, but we have the same issues everyone else does."