Sheriff’s Office Prescription Drug Unit Receives National Award

Sheriff Tom Knight is pleased to announce that the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office Pharmaceutical Diversion Investigative Unit (PDIU) received the 2011 Investigator of the Year Award from the National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators (NADDI).

Sheriff Knight and members of the PDIU accepted the award at NADDI’s 22nd Annual Training Conference in Jacksonville on Tuesday, November 15th.

The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office was recognized as a leader in the fight against prescription drug abuse. The PDIU has significantly expanded since its inception in 2009, now consisting of a Sheriff’s Office sergeant, three detectives, two civilian investigators and a detective from the North Port Police Department.

The specialized unit was commended for being proactive in educating the public, physicians and pharmacists, creating legislative change, promoting information-sharing and working in conjunction with addiction/recovery organizations in Sarasota County.

“Citizens and community leaders quickly recognized the devastating impact pain killers were having on Sarasota County,” said Sheriff Knight. “Thanks to our collaboration with the North Port Police Department, the medical community and the Board of County Commissioners, we are a model for other communities and Sarasota County will continue this fight to save lives and curb the crimes associated with those abusing prescription drugs.”