The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is highly active in Wichita with a Resident Office being located in the city. In addition, the agency operates the Wichita DEA Task Force, which works with other law enforcement agencies to bring Wichita-based drug traffickers to justice.
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Drug Interdictions by DEA Agents in Wichita
Wichita is a significant secondary market for drug trafficking in the Midwest. Both Interstate 35 and U.S. Highway 54 intersect in the city, making it a prime location for drugs to be shipped up from the southern border. In addition, traffickers bring in drugs from Canada and Washington.
In addition to being a major transshipment point for drugs, Wichita is also a sizable consumer market for illicit drugs. The DEA has an active presence in Wichita and has made a number of substantial busts in the city, frequently working closely with other law enforcement agencies.
- In December 2012, a Wichita resident was charged with conspiring to possess and distribute methamphetamine.
- An investigation by the DEA, local, and county authorities led to an April 2012 63 count indictment against 14 people for trafficking in cocaine in Wichita.
- Dozens of people in Wichita were arrested in 2008 for selling Ecstasy. This was from a multi-agency investigation including that started in 2004.
What it Takes to Become a DEA Agent in Wichita
Individuals who want to join the DEA can qualify in a number of different ways. One is to be a law enforcement officer involved in drug investigations. Another is to get an academic degree—a J.D., LL.B., Master’s, or a Bachelor’s with a GPA of 2.95. The grade point requirement is waived for bachelor’s degree holders who have three years of military, accounting, engineering, ship captain or airline pilot experience, information technology experience, or fluency in certain languages.
Wichita residents who seek careers with the DEA should contact the St. Louis Division of the agency to find out if there are jobs available in Wichita. New special agent recruits obtain their formal training in Quantico, Virginia
Addressing the Drug Problem in Wichita
The use of Wichita and its surrounding areas as a transshipment point for drug traffickers led the federal government to include Sedgwick County in its Midwest HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area) designation.
Methamphetamine – As with Kansas as a whole, meth is the drug of most concern in Wichita. Mexican trafficking organizations bring meth up from Mexico to Wichita and distribute it to towns in the southeastern and south central part of the state. In addition, local meth labs are a serious threat to public safety, both due to the additional spread of meth use and attendant violence, along with the danger of explosions posed by these labs.
Cocaine – Mexican traffickers import powder cocaine into Wichita and distribute it to the surrounding areas of Kansas. Local dealers convert some of this cocaine to crack, where its use contributes to violence in Wichita.
Marijuana – The abuse of pot is a significant problem throughout Kansas. Large quantities are brought into Wichita from the Southwest and transported to other cities in the southern part of the state. Local traffickers also grow the drug indoors, supplying high quality pot to users in Wichita
Ecstasy – The club drug Ecstasy is imported to Wichita from Canada and Washington state, where it is distributed by Asian gangs.