Opioid Crisis: ‘No One Wakes Up In The Morning And Says, I Want To Kill My Friend’
Prosecutors, in trying to think outside the box on how to make a dent in the opioid epidemic, are more frequently going after dealers in cases of a fatal overdose. Some say that's the wrong path to go down, though.
The Associated Press:
Prosecution Trend: After Fatal OD, Dealer Charged With Death
He knew he was in trouble even before he read the text message: "Did u hear what hapnd 2 ed?" Ed Martin III had been found dead in the bathroom of a convenience store. He'd mainlined fentanyl, an opioid up to 50 times more powerful than heroin. Michael Millette was sad that his friend, just 28, had died. But he was scared, too. He'd sold him his final fix. Millette fled to Vermont, but quickly returned [to New Hampshire] to sell more drugs to support his habit. Now, though, police had a tip that he'd been Martin's dealer. After he sold drugs to an informant, they arrested him. (Cohen, 8/13)
The Associated Press:
What’s Behind Growing Push To Punish Dealers In Fatal ODs?
Faced with an alarming increase in opioid addiction, a growing number of prosecutors are charging dealers not just for selling but for the deaths of customers who overdose on heroin or fentanyl. Here are some questions and answers about opioid abuse and this approach to pursuing dealers. (Cohen, 8/13)
In other news on the opioid crisis —
The New Orleans Times-Picayune:
White House Wants More Doctors To Treat Opioid Addiction
Nearly 1,500 counties in the United States do not have a single physician licensed to prescribe buprenorphine, a medication widely considered one of the most effective treatments for people with opioid and heroin use disorders. To remedy this problem, the White House announced Friday (Aug. 12) it is offering free buprenorphine training for health care providers across the country and online. (Lipinski, 8/12)
How Legal Pot May Have Created The Heroin Outbreak
This week, the DEA chose to keep pot on its list of most dangerous drugs, even though more and more states and cities are legalizing or decriminalizing pot use. But few Americans recognize a significant downside to the pot-legalization movement, which is addressed in an article in this month's Esquire magazine. (8/13)