Joint operation with FBI results in Centralia man arrested on federal drug charges

CENTRALIA — A 37-year-old Centralia man is being held in the Marion County Jail following his arrest Wednesday during a joint operation between the Centralia Police Department and the FBI Drug Task Force.

According to Centralia Police Chief Greg Dodson, Tyron Offutt had been the focus of an investigation by Task Force Investigators for the alleged distribution of methamphetamine.

Tyron Offutt
(Source: CPD)

After completing the investigation and obtaining a warrant, Officers waited until Offutt left his residence Wednesday and initiated a traffic stop taking him into custody.

After Offutt was in custody, Task Force Agents executed a search warrant on his residence in the 200 block of North Cherry in Centralia.

During the search, agents reportedly located two handguns, a large sum of cash as well as a large quantity of suspected methamphetamine and cannabis.

The Task Force includes members of the Centralia Police Department, Marion County Sheriff’s Department, Clinton County Sheriff’s Department, Carlyle Police Department, Salem Police Department and the FBI.

Offutt was transported to the Marion County Jail where he will be held until he can appear in Federal Court for the Southern District of Illinois on all related charges to the investigation and warrant.

Dodson says the Offutt case is an example of collaborative resources that the Federal Drug Task Force provides to not only the Centralia community but all the surrounding communities. He notes that no single agency has the manpower or financial resources to conduct operations such as this independently.

“But with the support of the FBI and the pooled investigators from the areas local law enforcement agencies, these types of criminals can be dealt with much more effectively and can be prosecuted on a federal level where they face more stringent penalties, also removing this burden from local prosecutors.”