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Columbus Police make arrests, seize drugs, guns and cash in latest phase of 'Operation Unity'

Columbus Police vehicles outside the division headquarters.
David Holm

In response to violent crime rising in the city, Columbus Police are continuing 'Operation Unity'. Part 4 of the effort, which ended yesterday, focused on the city's North Side.

Police say the primary objective of Operation Unity is to remove violent offenders, recover illegal firearms, and confiscate illegal narcotics from the street. Columbus police chief Elaine Bryant called Operation Unity a collaboration of law enforcement and social services working together for a holistic approach to attacking crime.

Officials say part 4 of the operation resulted in 15 felony arrests, the recovery of 13 illegal guns, 14 arrest warrants served, and 7 search warrants served. Officers also say they seized illegal drugs with a street value of nearly $270,000 including more than 1100 grams of cocaine, 700 grams of fentanyl, and 450 plus grams of methamphetamine. Police also confiscated $39,000 in cash.

The first phase of Operation Unity focused on a two-mile radius around Livingston Avenue and James Road. During the 24-hour operation, Columbus police made 251 traffic stops, 18 felony arrests, and confiscated drugs and guns.

Columbus Police released details about Part 2 of Operation Unity in November, which included a 21-hour effort on the West Side. Officers made nearly 200 traffic stops, wrote 250 traffic violations, and arrested 45 people, including 30 felons, during Part 2 of the operation.

Operation Unity Part 3 focused on the Linden area and resulted in the arrest of 20 felony suspects and the recovery of 17 stolen guns.

Debbie Holmes has worked at WOSU News since 2009. She has hosted All Things Considered, since May 2021. Prior to that she was the host of Morning Edition and a reporter.