Called the “fastest growing drug problem” in the country in this Chicago Sun-Times article, prescription drug abuse has hit communities of all sizes and all types. The lure of prescription drugs is the ease in which they can be obtained and their potent high.
The young are seen as particularly vulnerable to the issues surrounding prescription drugs simply because they are ignorant to the dangers and can often get high off their parent’s medicine cabinet. But the problem isn’t unique to the young.
More arrests, hospital admissions, and deaths for prescription drug abuse are being seen with each passing year. Treatment admissions for painkillers and non-heroin opiates rose 345% between 1998 and 2008 across the nation.
The common, though flawed, belief is that these drugs are not as dangerous, nor addictive as other illegal drugs. In fact, many of these are even more addictive as people quickly develop a tolerance to prescription drugs. Also, because of their wide availability, it’s much easier to get hooked faster, being able to indulge your addiction more often.
Though the prescription drug trade used to be one just between doctors and patients, it has more recently moved to the streets with gangs entering the lucrative trade too. Often, addicts can even find their fix on the Internet through online pharmacies.
Officials have tried a variety of actions to get the problem under control, increasing prosecution of drug related offenses and monitoring pain clinics who give prescriptions freely. Local pharmacies and law enforcement agencies have even set up events to collect old and unused prescriptions, preventing them from getting into the wrong hands.
If you are caught with prescription drugs you don’t have a legitimate prescription to have, you can actually face drug possession charges. If you do have a legitimate prescription you can still face charges if you are under the influence behind the wheel in a way that it negatively impacts your ability to safely operate your car.
Cops are getting better at recognizing prescription drugs and people under the influence. Whether you take the pills for legitimate pain or if you have a problem, you could face arrest and charges that can carry serious penalties.
A drug possession charge can carry fines, jail time, and other penalties. If the cops found you with prescription drugs on you, how they found the drugs and how they collected them can play a big role in your case. As a criminal defense attorney it’s part of my job to insure that your rights weren’t violated in any search or seizure leading up to your arrest. And if your rights were infringed upon, it’s my job to advocate on your behalf to have the charges dropped.
Regardless of the specific circumstances of your case, I want to help. Contact our offices today to discuss the details and what sort of options you have.