Scott County Sheriff Jerry Goodin

Scott County Sheriff Jerry Goodin

SCOTTSBURG, Ind. (WDRB) -- When Jerry Goodin started running for Scott County sheriff, he promised to go after the people supporting a drug problem that has plagued Scottsburg and Austin in the headlines.

"We're here to make a difference," Goodin said. "We're here to make a change."

Goodin is a man of his word. He's coming up with new tactics every day. Last week, he locked down the jail. This week, he's changing protocol in how overdoses are handled.

"We've told our EMS folks, we've told our dispatch folks, 'Make sure we know about every one of these overdoses,'" Goodin said.

Before, when someone overdosed, it was treated more as a medical issue and sort of fell through the cracks on the law enforcement side.

"Once folks go to the hospital, the police usually ... lose track of them," Goodin said.

Now, when an overdose is called in, a deputy stays with the person and opens a case immediately.

Goodin said 45-year-old Matt Kemp is the second arrest linked to the new efforts. An overdose allegedly led investigators right to him. Kemp is now locked up and charged with dealing drugs.

"We're trying to back the dealers into a corner," Goodin said.

Scott County Prosecutor Chris Owens is on board with turning up the heat.

"Until we scare the crap out of the people who are here polluting our communities, it's not going to stop," Owens said.

Helping in the effort, a new statute that took effect a year ago.

"It allows us to go after people, if you deal drugs and it results in the death of someone," Owens said.

For Owens and Goodin, the mission is deeply personal. Both men grew up in Scott County.

"The people of Scott County are my family," Goodin said.

He said this form of tough love is exactly what that family needs.

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