The North Carolina Counterdrug Program (CDP) is comprised of Soldiers and Airmen, most of whom are combat veterans, with unique military skills that can be of value to the community to stem the negative influence of drugs and combat organized criminal organizations. The CDP provides direct support to local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies in the form of intelligence analysts, ground and aerial reconnaissance, and marijuana eradication. Stemming from a Presidential directive and an Act of Congress, the CDP has been supporting you for 25 years.
A NATIONAL EFFORT, A LOCAL FOCUS
While the CDP is federally funded, CDP Soldiers serve on "Title 32" status, which means they are under the control of the State. While we are full-time Soldiers, we are also permanent members of the communities we serve. We are not providing support to customers – we are providing support to neighbors. Each State and Territory develops their own vision to support the agencies within their State, and the vision of the NC CDP is tailored by responding to the needs of our Law Enforcement partners and the trends of those who prey on our communities for illicit activities.
What authorizes us to do our mission?
32 USC Section 112 legally authorizes the National Guard to provide military unique skills and equipment towards counterdrug law enforcement activities. There exists a strict legal and regulatory structure to ensure citizen's right to privacy and due process rights are not violated during National Guard support activities. National Guardsman providing LEA support are doing so in a support role only and do not have any direct contact or keep any information about suspects during missions.
HOW WE SUPPORT THE COMMUNITY
Despite recent rounds of federal budget cuts that have affected our organization along with most other federally funded programs, the NCNG CDP continues to provide persistent and deliberate support to law enforcement agencies at all levels. The National Guard’s Military Readiness presents a supply of talented Soldiers and Airmen with skills that can be used to support Law Enforcement. Our personnel are experts in long-range observation, intelligence preparation, and aviation. We provide support to Police and County Sheriff’s Departments as well as large agencies like the DEA and SBI. Regardless of the size of the agency and mission, our goal is to support those who protect the peace and tranquility of our communities.
DRUG DEMAND REDUCTION OUTREACH
Prevention is a key tenant in reducing the widespread abuse of illicit substances throughout our state and the NC National Guard Counterdrug Program (NCNG-CDP) has been involved in prevention strategies since the early 2000s. What began as Drug Demand Reduction (DDR), a program that emphasized education and training in drug abuse prevention curriculum for youth, has since evolved into a multi-faceted process that focuses on partnerships and engagements, process implementation, and planning and support within community based organizations (CBOs).
Our DDRO team accomplishes this by utilizing our unique military skills in conjunction with SAMHSA’s Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF) and specialized training in coalition development through CADCA.
INVESTIGATIVE CASE ANALYST
On the battlefield, successful mission intelligence can be the difference between a celebrated victory and an agonizing defeat. In the struggle against illegal narcotics, those wartime skills our Soldiers posses are put towards dissecting criminal activity and intent and providing Law Enforcement Officers with an enhanced ability to anticipate a criminal enterprises’ next move.
Our ground observation team has decades of experience, both in overseas combat theaters and providing support here at home. With the ability to persistently observe a target for long periods of time, our ground reconnaissance Soldiers are able to record and report on critical events – what the criminal is doing when he thinks nobody is watching. Our ground reconnaissance team can deploy in urban and rural environments through a variety of mission sets. They can assist in directly observing criminal activity, establishing probable cause, or providing last minute intelligence before the execution of a search warrant.
As most law enforcement entities cannot afford their own aviation programs, aviation reconnaissance and observation support by the CDP is a highly unique service that can pay big dividends for local agencies. CDP pilots utilize the UH-72 Lakota, an observation and utility helicopter equipped with advanced thermal infrared sensors, long-range high resolution visual cameras, video downlink and high intensity searchlights.