In addition to the widely publicized problems in the Northeast, heroin has also been on the rise in the Midwest. According to local law enforcement in Indiana, they are seeing an increase in heroin cases and arresting more people with possession of heroin as the number of people in the state of Indiana continues to rise. Investigators are noticing that because the price of heroin is so low, addicts will seek the drug out to replace the prescription pain medication that they were abusing. Heroin addiction is not a new problem, but it is growing in cities like Lafayette, Indiana and elsewhere.
Another major indication that heroin abuse is on the rise is the amount of people getting treated for heroin overdoses. Emergency room doctor Marc Estes stated that his emergency room handles about one or two heroin overdoses a week. Estes points out that three years ago they hardly ever saw someone come in because of a heroin overdose. In addition to treating patients that have overdosed on the drug, Estes addresses many other physical problems related to heroin abuse. Patients will often times come into the emergency room with infections on their body from using dirty needles to inject the drug into their veins. If gone untreated, these infections can lead to serious complications, including death.
Lafayette Police Chief Patrick Flannelly stated that, “Overall, our numbers are up on heroin arrests and investigations. I think that’s expected, because the amount of heroin that’s available is up.”
Flannelly is quick to point out that the number or arrests do not accurately indicate the amount of people abusing heroin. He explains that heroin addicts and dealers will alter the way they deal and consume the drug according to police activity. Investigators are constantly trying to catch up with the new ways addicts and dealers have found to sell and transport the drug.
Pat Harrington, a Tippecanoe County Prosecutor, commented on the increasing heroin abuse problem the state of Indiana is seeing. Harrington states that prior to 2007 there were hardly ever any heroin abuse cases in the courts, but 33 cases were filed just in the county in 2013. It is clear that heroin abuse is on the rise in Indiana and surrounding areas.
If you have a loved one in need of drug intervention help in Indiana, contact us today.