October 6 2016
Sadly, the heroin deaths here are greater than anywhere in Florida. This was so predictable and preventable. Roll the clock back two years. There were thousands of people hooked on Opioid pain killers like Oxycontin and Oxycodone. The drug database kicked in and the police cracked down on the pill mills. It doesn’t take a genius to predict that the addicts would find a substitute, and that substitute is heroin. Most of the heroin now is not truly heroin. It is laced and sometimes substituted with synthetic substances many times more powerful. If you are an addict, you have to know someone that has overdosed here in Sarasota in the last six months. Jail is not the answer but it is better than death. If you have a relative picked up on possession of heroin, do not bond them out immediately. Let them sit for a few days to detox. When you bond them out, make certain they get into a rehab somewhere. Addicts have little or no control over their actions and decisions, and tough love is a harsh but necessary approach.
As a criminal defense lawyer, I see people get placed on probation all the time. A far better answer is the Sarasota County drug court. Judge Owens truly has a heart and truly wants to help those addicted to drugs. They just implemented a Veterans Court here in Sarasota that is designed to help Vets with a myriad of problems, including alcohol, PTSD related offenses as well as drugs. Parents need to know what the options are. Putting a person back on the street without help will only ultimately lead to their death. Drug intervention is a must. Friends should help friends and if a loved one is addicted, and you want them to live, you have to get them help. If you find a needle, a bent spoon, a packet of tinfoil or a small balloon in your kid’s room or in a spouses drawer or car, that is a good indication they are using. Heroin is not a problem in only the hood. There are many women, former pill addicts that now have switched. Many of the dancers at the strip clubs are now strung out and dancing to support a habit.
Just like the saying “Friends don’t let friends drive drunk”, friends should not let friends continue to use and die.
Heroin is an epidemic here in Sarasota and in Bradenton and everyone in the criminal justice system should step up and help stop the senseless deaths. If you want compassionate representation for an addict friend or relative, call for a free consultation:
In Sarasota call 941 366 3506 In Ft. Myers call 239 334 8890