U.S. Attorney Ritz discusses role, talks issues across West Tennessee
JACKSON, Tenn. — Kevin Ritz was nominated by President Biden in July of last year, and is now the United States Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee. He has served in this particular position for around six months, but is very familiar with this role.
“Public service in in my nature,” Ritz said. “It’s why I wanted to be a prosecutor and an Assistant United States Attorney. I think there’s no better job than being a federal prosecutor in your hometown and in my home region, which is West Tennessee, in Memphis particularly.”
Ritz says he has a lot of experience working drug cases, and that the fentanyl outbreak is one of the biggest threats he has ever seen. He says it is very easy to overdose on this drug and talks about ways they are combating this epidemic.
“We have a lot of tools that we bring to bear. Federal drug statutes and we use sophisticated investigative techniques like wiretaps and conspiracy statues,” Ritz said. “This is something we’re good at in the U.S. Attorney’s Office. We work closely, I want to say closely with federal, state, and local law enforcement to attack that problem.”
With everything going on recently, we wanted to see what the U.S. Attorney’s Office is talking about regarding assault weapons.
“Well, look, we enforce the law. That’s our job in the U.S. Attorney’s Office,” Ritz said. “We enforce the laws that we’re given by the legislatures. The good news is in terms of our tools that we have a lot of tools at our disposal. We are concerned about gun violence no matter what gun is used in a particular crime.”
When asked about transparency with law enforcement, Ritz says it is a very important goal to have. He also says it is important for law enforcement to have a constructive relationship with their community.
Ritz will be spending time in various places in West Tennessee this week, including here in Jackson, as well as Martin and Camden.
Ritz plans on meeting with local district attorneys and law enforcement this week.
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