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Ohio's heroin epidemic worsens, but Zumba is not on the treatment horizon: Phillip Morris
Many of us are acquainted with families that have been devastated by opioid addiction or currently struggle with the drug. It's a painful health spiral to watch, not knowing from one day to another whether a once vibrant person will unceremoniously appear in a newspaper obituary. With each passing month, it seems that the nation's opioid epidemic can't possibly get any worse. Then it does -- especially here in Ohio. In the past two weeks, more than 200 overdoses in the Cincinnati area alone have claimed the lives of three people. Many more users likely would have died, were it not for an unprecedented, modern medical response. EMS first responders and safety forces have battled courageously to combat the surge of overdoses and deaths that began spiking several years ago when heroin and fentanyl were mixed into a highly-toxic mixture. Now, the danger has spiked again, with no real end in sight. The New York Times reports that in Cincinnati, medical and law enforcement officials believe the recent rash of overdoses was mostly caused by a synthetic drug called carfentanil, a tranquilizer occasionally used on elephants that has no practical uses for humans. Officials now have reached out to zoos and veterinarians to help them gain a better understanding of a drug normally used in the treatment of large animals. The emerging synthetic drug potency is staggering. Fentanyl can be 50 times stronger than heroin, and carfentanil is as much as 100 times more potent than fentanyl, according to the Times report. Cincinnati-area law enforcement has become so concerned about the potency of carfentanil and other synthetic opioids that they now carry overdose-reversing naloxone spray for themselves, in case they accidentally inhale or touch the slightest amount of a suspected drug. Few of us have the luxury of ignoring the problem. It's all around us. Many of us know families that have been devastated by opioid addiction or are struggling with the drug. It's a painful health spiral to watch, not knowing from one day to another whether a once-vibrant person will unceremoniously appear in a newspaper obituary. Thirty years ago, the nation was in the throes of a crack cocaine crisis. Inner-city neighborhoods were destroyed by violence, and countless families were ripped apart, as users succumbed and dealers were rounded up and incarcerated. Countless African-American families continue to bear the crippling scars of that earlier drug epidemic, which was treated strictly as a criminal problem as opposed to a medical problem. It seems that we've learned certain important lessons. Now that the face of the current epidemic is overwhelmingly white, we've seemed to come to the understanding that a nation cannot simply arrest and incarcerate itself out of a drug problem. I consider that progress. In some ways, we seem to be evolving. Too many lives and families have been destroyed when medical challenges -- be they mental or physiological -- were treated strictly as criminal challenges. That goes to the heart of the daunting and complicated nature of the synthetic opioid rage this nation currently confronts. We're far from alone. Rodrigo Duterte, the newly elected president of the Philippines, was swept into office in large part due to a horrific pledge that he would attack that country's crippling crime epidemic by killing drug dealers. A little over 60 days into his term, an estimated 1,300 to 1,900 suspected dealers or users have been killed in a violent crackdown. The bloodletting has had an immediate effect. More than 680,000 people have surrendered to the government, pledging to kick their habit and begging for help. The Philippine government's response to the massive outcry for help: It now offers Zumba and other exercise classes as treatment options. Meanwhile, the extrajudicial killing of suspected Filipino dealers and addicts continues unabated. In America, we can be encouraged and mindful that the search continues for humane treatment and prevention strategies, even as the opioid crisis rages completely out of control.
32 points by The Plain Dealer | Opioid Morphine Heroin Drug addiction Cocaine Drug Addiction Opium
Ex-jail worker gets 6 years in prison for extorting inmates
SCRANTON, Pa. (AP) - A former county jail employee in northeastern Pennsylvania who extorted money and drugs from inmates in return for special privileges has been sentenced to six years in prison.
-2 points by The Philadelphia Inquirer | Drug addiction Illegal drug trade Prison Drug Heroin Witness tampering Cocaine Lawyer
More than 50 charged in drug raids targeting West Side
More than 50 people are facing charges for their roles in distributing heroin and cocaine on the West Side, according to the U.S. attorney's office.
-1 points by Chicago Sun-Times | Crime Cocaine Illegal drug trade Gang Drug addiction Los Angeles Police Federal Bureau of Investigation
Dozens held in drug ring operating on block targeted in '90s Fed probe
More than 50 people, most alleged members of the Traveling Vice Lords street gang, are charged in connection with a drug ring operating in the Lawndale neighborhood, including on a block that was the focus of a 1990s federal prosecution of the same gang, authorities said Thursday. The federal and...
17 points by Chicago Tribune | Organized crime Gang Illegal drug trade Federal Bureau of Investigation Cocaine Drug addiction Drug Enforcement Administration Heroin
Police: Five arrested in ongoing heroin investigation
Howard County police detectives arrested five people in Elkridge over the weekend accused of distributing heroin in connection to an ongoing investigation. The arrests were made following search warrants at two separate locations in the 6700 block of Deep Run Parkway, police said. During the first...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Police Cocaine Criminal Investigation Department Drug addiction Detective Cannabis Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution Criminal law
Judge rules in favor of man in violent 2015 arrest

-2 points by The Philadelphia Inquirer | Assault Police Law enforcement terminology Resisting arrest Criminal law Cocaine Arrest Drug addiction
Cost of overdose drug could hamper access in Maryland and elsewhere
The price of a drug that has saved the lives of more than 800 people overdosing on heroin or other opioids in Baltimore is rising rapidly. The antidote known as naloxone revives addicts after they've stopped breathing, with either a simple spray in their nose or an injection. The use of naloxone...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Heroin Opioid Morphine Drug addiction Addiction Codeine Cocaine Drug
Orlando cop resigns after mistaking doughnut glaze for meth
An Orlando Police officer who arrested a man after mistaking doughnut glaze for methamphetamine has been reprimanded.
1723 points by Daily News | Cocaine Orlando Sentinel Methamphetamine Orlando Florida Drug injection Drug addiction Tribune Company Heroin
Troy Ave makes court fashion statement with fur coat, bulletproof vest
A Brooklyn rapper made quite the fashion statement Friday when he sauntered into a Manhattan court wearing a floor-length fur, a bulletproof vest and a red baseball cap promoting crack cocaine. Troy Ave — whose real name is Roland Collins — had to hand over the vest to security before heading to the courtroom but...
295 points by New York Post | Crack cocaine Lawyer Cocaine
Recidivist drug dealer faces jail again after Obama commuted his last sentence
After spending 15 years in prison for distributing drugs, Robert M. Gill, 68, will return to prison after a high-speed chase resulted in him getting caught with two pounds of cocaine. Gill’s sentence was commuted in 2015 by then-President Barack Obama. Read Full Article at
277 points by Russia Today | Prison Crime Cocaine New York Post New York City
Man convicted in killings of woman, boy witness loses appeal
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A three-judge panel on Monday rejected the latest appeal of a Connecticut man who was once on death row for ordering the 1999 killings of a woman and her 8-year-old son because the boy was going…
-2 points by Arizona Daily Star | Law Judge Appeal Lawyer Court Cocaine Habeas corpus Trial
Cops bust man who threatened to rape Brooklyn parks worker
Cops arrested a truck driver for attacking and threatening to rape an on-duty Parks Department worker in Brooklyn, sources said.
133 points by Daily News | Crime Police Criminal law Abuse Cocaine Truck Crack cocaine Semi-trailer truck
Rock bottom cocoa prices could spur some farmers to return to cocaine production
By Marvin G. Perez, Bloomberg News The worst cocoa price rout in more than 17 years is raising concern that farmers in South America may quit growing the raw material used in chocolate, and shift to alternative crops such as cocaine, industry groups said. The beans traded on ICE Futures U.S. in New York have […]
34 points by The Denver Post | Ecuador Ton Tonne Colombia Côte d'Ivoire Caffeine Cocaine El Niño-Southern Oscillation
Officials announce near-record drug bust

-2 points by The Philadelphia Inquirer | Drug addiction Heroin Morphine Addiction Cocaine Opioid Drug Enforcement Administration Drug
Marion Barry, son of infamous D.C. mayor, died of a PCP overdose
Marion Christopher Barry, known as Christopher, died in August at age 36.
142 points by Daily News | Drug addiction Crack cocaine Marion Barry Drug overdose Cocaine Addiction Phencyclidine Insufflation
Cops mistake baking soda for cocaine, jail couple for 2 months
Police used a portable drug test — a $2 kit that is known for its high frequency of false positives — on the substance.
22719 points by Daily News | Krispy Kreme Methamphetamine Heroin Cocaine Semi-trailer truck Tests Controlled Substances Act Clandestine chemistry
Chesco DA: Fugitive ran illicit 'full-service pharmacy'
A Coatesville man was at large Friday after police seized drugs, inlcuding cocaine and heroin; firearms, and money from his home, officials said.
-2 points by The Philadelphia Inquirer | Heroin Drug injection Illegal drug trade Methamphetamine Drug addiction MDMA Cocaine Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs
AG: Man who operating drug ring gets 15 years in prison
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Authorities say a Providence man who operated a large-scale heroin and cocaine distribution network throughout Rhode Island is headed to prison. The Providence Journal reports ( ) Attorney General Peter Kilmartin's office says a Superior Court judge sentenced 51-year-old Juan "Cookie" Rivera to 15 years behind ...
1 points by The Washington Times | Rhode Island Federal Bureau of Investigation Newport Rhode Island Narragansett Bay Heroin Drug addiction Providence Rhode Island Cocaine
Why heroin is Mexican cartels' new drug of choice
In Mexico, a profound change is occurring in the drug trade.         
-2 points by Arizona Republic | United States Illegal drug trade Drug addiction Recreational drug use Cocaine Mexico Morphine Psychoactive drug
Autopsy: Marion Barry's son died of accidental PCP overdose
WASHINGTON (AP) - An autopsy has revealed that the only son of longtime District of Columbia mayor Marion Barry died of an accidental drug overdose. Marion Christopher Barry, known as Christopher, died in August at age 36. A spokeswoman for the D.C. Medical Examiner, LaShon Beamon, said Thursday that Barry ...
-2 points by The Washington Times | Drug addiction Crack cocaine Washington D.C. Marion Barry Drug overdose Cocaine Addiction Phencyclidine
'Elle,' 'Edge of Seventeen' and more critics' picks, Nov. 11-17
Movie recommendations from critics Kenneth Turan, Justin Chang and other reviewers. Click title for full review. Arrival Amy Adams stars in this elegant, involving science fiction drama that is simultaneously old and new, revisiting many alien invasion conventions but with unexpected intelligence,...
4 points by Los Angeles Times | Miscegenation Cocaine South Korea Park Chan-wook Drama Supreme Court of the United States Crack cocaine Interracial marriage
Why heroin is Mexican drug cartels' new product of choice
In Mexico, a profound change is occurring in the drug trade.       
13531 points by USA Today | United States Illegal drug trade Drug addiction Recreational drug use Cocaine Mexico Morphine Psychoactive drug
Police: Mom abused 5-year-old son, forced him to smoke crack
PITTSBURGH (AP) - Police have charged a Pittsburgh woman after they say she physically abused her 5-year-old son, left him alone for extended periods of time and forced him to smoke crack cocaine.
-2 points by The Philadelphia Inquirer | Crack cocaine Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Greensburg Pennsylvania Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Hugh Henry Brackenridge Crime Cocaine
Trial set for woman accused of stabbing man 77 times, setting him on fire
An East Germantown woman accused of fatally stabbing a man 77 times, then setting his body ablaze a few days later, was held for trial Wednesday on murder, arson and related charges.
-2 points by The Philadelphia Inquirer | Sudden infant death syndrome Cocaine House Real estate Drug addiction Arraignment Crack cocaine Breastfeeding
Howard police bust Laurel man for selling cocaine, heroin in home
A Laurel man was arrested by Howard County police earlier this week for selling cocaine and heroin in his home on Covered Wagon Drive. Police say they received information about the drug sales and later executed a search warrant at the home of 33-year-old James E. Goldsberry, where they found suspected...
-1 points by Baltimore Sun | Drug addiction Illegal drug trade Cocaine Firearm Crack cocaine Heroin Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs Maryland
Cleveland Heights man accused of shooting prostitute in vacant Cleveland home
Paul White, 27, is accused of shooting a prostitute last week in an abandoned building on Cleveland's East Side. Watch video CLEVELAND, Ohio -- A Cleveland Heights man is accused of shooting a prostitute several times in a vacant home after they got into an argument over who would take the last few crumbs of their crack cocaine, according to court records. Paul White, 27, is charged with felonious assault. He is not in police custody and a warrant was issued for his arrest. The 45-year-old woman has been convicted of prostitution charges yearly from 2011 to 2015 and once in 2008. Neighbors said she lives in the home and often takes clients from a nearby motel to a vacant building on Euclid Avenue and Urbana Road. The woman met White about 8:30 a.m. Friday in front of the same motel, police reports say. The two bought crack cocaine on Euclid and Alcoy Road from a drug dealer whose street name is B-Murder, police said. They drove back to the vacant building to smoke it, according to police reports. White asked the woman if he could take the leftover crack with him when he left and she refused, police said. White pulled out a handgun and shot her three times, once in the chest, knee and left elbow, police reports say. White ran to his car and drove off. Police and emergency medical workers found the woman bloodied in home and yelling for help, neighbors said.  To comment on this story, visit Monday's crime and courts comments section.  
224 points by The Plain Dealer | Cleveland Misdemeanor Drug addiction Crack cocaine Cocaine Crime Assault Battery
Brief police chase ends with suspect arrested in northeast Houston
A man was taken into custody early Wednesday morning after he led police on a brief chase in northeast Houston.
3 points by The Houston Chronicle | Film noir Cocaine Narcotic English-language films Drug addiction The Chase The Driver Liam Neeson
Dozen drug dealers nabbed in Queens, ending year-long probe
A dozen drug peddlers that operated out of a Queens housing project were arrested by police — ending a year-long investigation.
935 points by Daily News | Illegal drug trade Drug addiction Crime Cocaine Methamphetamine Undercover Law enforcement terminology Gang