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Fallen Huntsville police officer was member of the regional STAC unit

The Strategic Counterdrug (STAC) Team is made up of law enforcement agencies in both Madison and Morgan counties.

Posted: Dec 6, 2019 11:17 PM
Updated: Dec 6, 2019 11:46 PM

While the identity of Huntsville Police officer who was shot and killed Friday afternoon has not been released out of respect for his family, Chief Mark McMurray said he was a member of the Strategic Counterdrug (STAC) Team.

"When we talk about a family in law enforcement, the STAC team is a prime example of that," said Madison County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Stacy Bates.

"It's kind of the ultimate representative of what a family-type law enforcement unit is."

The STAC Team is a tight unit made up of multiple agencies. It has been in operation for decades in Huntsville and responds to al kinds of drug-related calls.

"There's no investigation too small that they don't handle, there's none too big they can't handle," said Bates.

The team is comprised of the police departments in Huntsville, Madison and Decatur as well as the Madison County Sheriff's Office and the Madison County District Attorney's Office.

The Morgan County Sheriff's Office was a part of STAC until Nov. 8 when it concluded its membership and transitioned to the Alabama Drug Enforcement Task Force (Region F) and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Task Force.

The multi-agency partnership led to a massive drug bust in October involving the U.S. Post Office.

"Without the other agencies that are involved in STAC being involved in the case, I don't think it would have been such a success," said Lt. Tony McElyea, the STAC team commander. He spoke with WAAY 31 shortly after that drug operation was announced.

"These guys spend a lot of time together. They run cases that may start in Huntsville and may end up in Limestone County. They follow them from beginning to end and they do it together," said Bates.

Bates said the STAC Team was working with the Gulf Coast High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force at the time of the shooting on Friday. That group is run by the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy. 

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