The Ohio Narcotics Intelligence Center (ONIC) was established in 2019 when Ohio Governor Mike DeWine signed Executive Order 2019-20D. The ONIC operates as part of the Ohio Department of Public Safety in four locations throughout the state.
The ONIC has offices in Columbus, Cleveland, Toledo, and Cincinnati. Offices consist of criminal intelligence analysts and computer forensic specialists that assist law enforcement agencies and drug task forces by providing investigative support through the extraction and analysis of cell phones and other electronic devices, criminal case support, tactical, operational, and strategic intelligence support, trend analysis, cryptocurrency tracing, and dark web investigations.
All four ONIC locations feature state-of-the-art digital forensic and analytical tools to access and connect crucial digital evidence that could help law enforcement trace the drug trafficking organizations back to the ringleaders and suppliers. ONIC supports agencies who may otherwise not have access to these tools and uses a variety of storage solutions to accommodate the distribution of criminal evidence to law enforcement.
In 2021, ONIC Intel assisted nearly 435 criminal investigations. Analysts processed 497 requests for assistance and provided 486 workups. ONIC Forensics assisted in over 747 cases, analyzed over 2,910 devices, and conducted over 2,869 forensic examinations. ONIC works in collaboration with RecoveryOhio, the Ohio National Guard, the Ohio Task Force Commanders Association, the Ohio Department of Health, the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, the Drug Monitoring Initiative, Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, Drug Enforcement Administration, and State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy.
ONIC has established working partnerships with RecoveryOhio, the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy, Ohio National Guard Counterdrug Task Force, Ohio Task Force Commanders Association, the Ohio Department of Health, Ohio State Highway Patrol, the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, and Cleveland Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) Strike Force.
ONIC, along with RecoveryOhio, hosts a Monthly Drug Trends Call that feature collaboration among law enforcement partners throughout Ohio and are aimed at combating the narcotics crisis from multiple angles. The calls host a group of reoccurring core presenters from multiple sector agencies including public health, law enforcement, regulatory agencies as well as featured speakers from areas of expertise relevant to emerging trends. In addition to the monthly call, ONIC helped to facilitate several other reoccurring calls that focus on dedicated topics such as forensic drug science, quick response teams, and national drug trends. These calls report significant findings back to ONIC/RecoveryOhio and are a part of ONIC’s efforts to establish sharing partnerships and actionable intelligence related to Ohio’s narcotics epidemic.