March 16, 2003
Diminished Interleukin-6 Response to Proinflammatory Challenge in Men and Women after Intravenous Cocaine Administration
John H. Halpern, Michelle B. Sholar, Julie Glowacki, Nancy
K. Mello, Jack H. Mendelson and Arthur J. Siegel
Alcohol and Drug Abuse Research Center, McLean Hospital, Harvard Medical School (J.H.H., M.B.S., N.K.M.,
J.H.M., A.J.S.), Belmont, Massachusetts 02478; and Departments of Psychiatry (J.H.H.) and Orthopedic Surgery (J.G.), Brigham
and Womens Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115
Address all correspondence and requests for reprints to: John H. Halpern, M.D., Alcohol and Drug Abuse Research
Center, McLean Hospital, 115 Mill Street, Belmont, Massachusetts 02478-9106. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cocaine abuse is associated with increased rates of infections, including human immunodeficiency virus, and
cocaine has immunomodulatory effects in experimental animal and cellular models. When challenged by
antigens, tissues release cytokine polypeptides that signal a complex balance of cellular and humoral immune responses.
Placement of indwelling venous catheters also leads to surrounding tissue inflammation, mediated partially
by local production and release of the proinflammatory cytokine, IL-6. Thus, catheter placement provides
a model for examination of cocaines immunological effects. Thirty healthy men and women with a history of
cocaine use participated in this study of neuroendocrine and immunological responses to iv injection of 0.4 mg/kg
cocaine or saline placebo. After injection, blood samples were collected from the antecubital vein of
the opposite arm via an indwelling venous catheter at 2, 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, 30, 40, 60, 80, 120, 180,
and 240 min. Cocaine, ACTH, cortisol, and dehydroepiandrosterone concentrations peaked at 8, 12, 40, and 20 min,
respectively. Stimulation of IL-6 at 240 min was markedly reduced in subjects receiving cocaine compared
with subjects receiving placebo (3.85 ± 0.49 vs. 11.64 ± 2.21 pg/ml; P = 0.0019, by
two-tailed t test). Gender and menstrual cycle phase did not significantly influence most endocrine
or IL-6 measures, although the small number of subjects limits the power of these comparisons. Because
cocaine stimulates the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, IL-6 suppression may be a consequence of corticosteroid
release. Cocaine-induced suppression of proinflammatory IL-6 may mediate impaired host defenses to infections.
January 30, 2003
Below I am posting a commentary that I read in a daily newsletter that I subscribe to, from JoinTogether Online.
President Bush, in his State of the Union address January 28, announced that he has proposed a new 600 million dollar
program to treat Americans with addictions. Bravo, President Bush!! Way to go!!!!!!
By Bob Curley
Saying that "too many Americans in search of treatment cannot
get it," President Bush used his Jan. 28 State of the Union address to unveil a $600-million proposal to help people with addiction get help with their recovery.
Bush said the "Recovery Now" program would fund vouchers that addicted individuals could use to get treatment at their choice of programs, including those that
rely on faith-based methods. The money, allocated over three years, would allow an additional 300,000 people to get addiction
treatment, Bush said.
"Tonight, let us bring to all Americans who struggle with drug addiction this message of hope:
The miracle of recovery is possible, and it could be you," said Bush.
Recovery advocates were ecstatic to hear Bush's
ringing endorsement, especially in such a high-profile setting. "It propelled me out of my seat, cheering -- and then I burst
into tears," said Susan Rook, director of communications and outreach for Faces and Voices of Recovery. "For the president of the United States to talk in the State of the Union about the 'miracle of recovery' puts recovery
on the national agenda ... For the first time in history, the solution was placed front and center instead of the problem,
and that's extraordinary."
"In my lifetime I've never heard a president name the disease and so strongly identify the
remedy," agreed John Avery, public-policy director for NAADAC/The Association for Addiction Professionals. "He said recovery is possible, and that's powerful language and great presidential leadership on this issue."
skepticism in policy circles has been that people cycle in and out of treatment and that it doesn't work," added Avery. "The
president said no -- recovery happens."
Concerns About Funding, Faith
However, enthusiasm for the president's
plan was somewhat tempered by concerns about its chances of being funded by Congress in the face of a massive federal budget
deficit, and worries about the implications of opening up federal addiction funding to faith-based programs.
pointed out that the House of Representatives failed to fully fund Bush's treatment budget for 2003, although he said that
the Republican-dominated Congress might be more willing to support a plan that is couched in the language of religion.
the State of the Union, Bush touched upon addiction's impact on personal morality, and went out of his way to praise faith-based
treatment programs. "Our nation is blessed with recovery programs that do amazing work," said Bush. "One of them is found
at the Healing Place Church in Baton Rouge, La. A man in the program said, 'God does miracles in people's lives, and you never think it could be you.'"
Myles, cofounder of the Healing Place Church, sat in the front row of the spectator's gallery near first lady Laura Bush,
as did Henry Lozano, head of the faith-based Teen Challenge of California and co-chair of the President's Advisory Council on Drug-Free Communities.
Addiction experts acknowledge
that faith and religion have played an integral part in recovery programs since the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous, and
can be effective. "We don't have a problem with faith-based providers," said NAADAC's Avery. "Our concern is with what kind
of treatment is being provided. Historically, faith-based programs have been in the field all along ... We welcome anyone
who wants to provide effective, evidence-based services."
"I've discussed the voucher proposal with the president and
consider it an important first step in addressing the lack of access to treatment for people who are chemically dependent,"
said Rep. Jim Ramstad (R-Minn.), who has freely discussed his own addiction and recovery. "I agree with the president that faith-based treatment centers
should not face discrimination by the federal government in providing treatment because I've seen, firsthand, their positive
Faces and Voices' Rook called Bush's framing of the recovery issue a "wake-up call" for the traditional
treatment community. "He doesn't use all of the 'appropriate' language of the recovery community, but he is typical of the
larger recovery community," she said. "There are many pathways to recovery."
Assessment, then Vouchers
many remain wary that faith-based programs will be exempted from state and federal regulations that apply to other treatment
programs, as was the case when President Bush helped establish Texas' faith-based funding initiative in the mid-1990s.
commitment to quality in treatment leads us to recommend that any system of vouchers that may be established be used only
for treatment by programs that are accredited and licensed by the appropriate state agency, making them subject to quality
assurance, regulation and inspection by the state," said Lawrence S. Brown, Jr., M.D., MPH, FASAM, president of the American Society of Addiction Medicine.
But John Walters, director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), said that Recovery
Now would increase, not decrease, accountability. According to ONDCP, individuals would be assessed and receive a voucher
to pay for an appropriate level of treatment. States would be required to monitor the outcomes of the voucher program, and
to make adjustments based on the extent to which improved client outcomes are achieved in a cost-effective manner.
new initiative is designed to allow treatment providers, faith-based and other community organizations, workplaces, and schools
to help drug users receive the treatment and support services that are best suited to their individual needs," according to
"We know that treatment works," said Walters. "But we also know that there are too many Americans who, for
a variety of reasons, cannot access the treatment they need. By giving people a choice, and the direct means to help connect
them with effective treatment, we will be able to more directly help drug users who have recognized their problem."
accountability measures built into the voucher proposal represent a fundamental shift from current public funding streams,
which typically measure success in terms of the number of clients served. "The measure is not output of a system, but person-specific
measures of function," noted NAADAC's Avery, who said the voucher proposal embraces many of the key concepts of the federal
National Treatment Plan, such as client-need driven services and multiple points of entry into treatment.
"The devil is in the details, which
will become apparent in the budget in the weeks and months ahead," said William Moyers, vice president of external affairs
for the Hazelden network of treatment programs. "It's uncertain now whether the president intends for this money to go to unlicensed faith-based
programs without trained professionals, or to the kinds of recovery programs we know well. But I feel some reason for optimism
that recovery from addiction is an important issue in Washington right now."
By Pat Ford-Roegner
As state legislatures convene throughout the country for the
2003 session, budget deficits and slumping revenues will dominate the agenda. Many state programs will suffer cuts as lawmakers
try to make our public ends meet.
One area where cuts cannot be afforded is the treatment of alcohol and drug use disorders.
and drug treatment is already underfunded to the point that five million Americans who need treatment cannot obtain it because
the health care system simply lacks the capacity to care for them.
Why is addiction treatment so poorly funded?
with alcohol and drug use disorders are often viewed as a helpless cause, a waste of resources, or unworthy of care due to
their own actions.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
Chemical dependency is a real and complex disease.
The misuse of drugs or alcohol extends beyond mere choice. While the path to addiction begins with the act of drug consumption,
a person's ability to choose not to take drugs can be compromised. Alcohol and drugs change brain chemistry and functioning
and often lead to compulsive or uncontrollable use even in the face of extremely negative consequences.
use disorders are more rightly seen as a brain disease, not a moral failure.
The good news is that alcohol and drug
use disorders can be effectively treated. A study by the Physician Leadership on National Drug Policy concludes that alcohol
and drug treatment is as effective as treatments for illnesses such as diabetes, asthma and hypertension.
is treatment medically effective, it is cost effective.
For every dollar spent on alcohol and drug treatment at least
seven dollars is saved in terms of health care costs, increased productivity, and reduction in accidents.
savings of treatment cannot be underestimated, when you consider that the annual social cost of alcohol and other drug disorders
is over $300 billion.
Treatment is also better and cheaper than prison. Offenders who receive treatment as part of
their sentence have lower recidivism rates than their counterparts who receive no treatment.
Unfortunately, the lack
of funding for treatment is most notable in our state and federal prison systems. State officials report that 70 to 85 percent
of inmates need some type of substance use disorder treatment, but less than 15 percent actually receive treatment.
a result, we see a revolving door for people who commit crimes either on drugs or for drugs or both. Incarceration without
treatment does not address addiction, it merely interrupts the cycle.
And how does the cost of treatment compare to
Intensive inpatient alcohol or drug treatment costs roughly half of what it costs to imprison a person.
And yet funding still lags.
But treatment is not only elusive for those who cannot afford insurance and those behind
bars. Fully employed Americans who think they have comprehensive health care coverage also have trouble obtaining alcohol
and drug treatment.
Some insurance companies offer limited or restricted alcohol and drug treatment coverage.
are often higher co-payments and deductibles for alcohol and drug treatment. There are more stringent limits on inpatient
care and outpatient treatment for addiction than for other diseases. Also, the annual and lifetime expenditure caps are more
restrictive for substance use disorders than for other diseases.
In short, patients in need of alcohol and drug treatment
are discriminated against based on their disease.
Given the social cost of substance use disorders and existence of
effective treatment, the above facts and figures are unacceptable.
State legislatures should strengthen funding for
alcohol and drug treatment and approve parity legislation that ensures equal health care coverage for all diseases. Our nation's
long-term health and economic well-being depend on it.
Unfortunately, health and social service programs, including
alcohol and drug treatment, are among the first cut in times of fiscal crisis. The tragic irony is that these services are
most needed when the economy is slumping. An uncertain economic future means fewer jobs, less secure health coverage, and
increased alcohol and drug use.
Representing the nation's frontline addictions counselors, I encourage legislators
to shield alcohol and drug treatment from budget cuts. Treatment is a wise investment that yields healthier and more productive
Pat Ford-Roegner is executive director of NAADAC, The Association for Addiction Professionals.
Current Major Drug Threats
Street Names: Meth, Speed, Ice, Chalk,
Crank, Fire, Glass, and Crystal.
Physical Effects: Methamphetamine is a toxic, addictive stimulant.
Meth use dilates the pupils and produces temporary hyperactivity, euphoria, a sense of increased energy, and tremors.
Dangers: Methamphetamine use increases the heart rate, blood pressure,
body temperature, and rate of breathing, and it frequently results in violent behavior in users. Methamphetamine is neurotoxic,
meaning that it causes damage to the brain. High doses or chronic use have been associated with increased nervousness, irritability,
and paranoia. Withdrawal from high doses produces severe depression. Chronic abuse produces a psychosis similar to schizophrenia
and is characterized by paranoia, picking at the skin, self absorption, and auditory and visual hallucinations. Violent and
erratic behavior is frequently seen among chronic, high-dose methamphetamine abusers.
Description: Meth can be smoked, snorted, injected, or taken orally,
and its appearance varies depending on how it is used. Typically, it is a white, odorless, bitter-tasting powder that easily
dissolves in beverages. Another common form of the drug is crystal meth, or ice,named for its appearance (that of clear, large
chunky crystals resembling rock candy). Crystal meth is smoked in a manner similar to crack cocaine and about 10 to 15 hits
can be obtained from a single gram of the substance.
Distribution Methods: Meth is frequently sold through social networks
and is rarely sold on the streets.
Street Names: Ecstasy, E, Fantasy,
XTC, Adam, Clarity, Lovers Speed.
Physical Effects: MDMA produces both amphetamine-like stimulation
and mild mescaline-like hallucinations. It is touted as a feel good drug with an undeserved reputation of safety. MDMA produces
euphoria, increased energy, increased sensual arousal, and enhanced tactile sensations.
Dangers: MDMA users often experience muscle tension, involuntary
teeth clenching, nausea, blurred vision, faintness, chills, and sweating. In addition, MDMA can produce significant increases
in heart rate and blood pressure similar to those associated with amphetamine use. MDMAs effects usually last 3 to 6 hours,
but users report that confusion, depression, sleep problems, anxiety, and paranoia may occur even weeks after the drug is
taken. MDMA is neurotoxic and chronic use may result in long-lasting, possibly permanent brain damage that causes learning
and memory impairment. In high doses, MDMA can cause extreme increases in body temperature that lead to muscle breakdown and
kidney and cardiovascular system failure. This condition, called malignant hyperthermia, can be fatal.
Description: MDMA is ingested and sold in tablet or pill form.
Traffickers frequently embellish MDMA tablets with brand names, designs, and logos for marketing purposes. Among the more
popular logos are butterflies, lightening bolts, and four-leaf clovers.
Distribution Methods: MDMA is most often distributed at raves,
which are all-night dance parties.
Street Names: Oxy, OC, Oxycotton,
Physical Effects: OxyContin, a central nervous system
depressant, is a prescription painkiller. The active ingrediant in OxyContin is oxycodone, which has similar effects to those
of heroin. OxyContin contains a much larger amount of oxycodone than do similar painkillers (Percocet and Percodan, for example).
OxyContin stimulates the the opioid receptors in the central nervous system and brings about effects ranging from analgesia,
to respiratory depression, to euphoria.
Dangers: With prolonged use of OxyContin, abusers become
physically dependent. Overdoses can cause convulsions, comas, or death.
Description: OxyContin comes in tablet form. Some abusers
chew the tablets. Others crush them and snort the substance or dilute it in water and inject it.
Distribution Methods: Because it is a legal drug that
is diverted from legitimate sources, OxyCondit is obtained very differently than illegal drugs. Pharmacy robberies, forged
presciptions, and theft of the drug from patients with a legitimate prescription are ways that abusers access OxyContin. Some
abusers (with or without legitimate complaints) visit numerous doctors to receive prescriptions. This method is called Doctor
Street Names: Big C, Blow,
Coke, Flake, Lady, Nose Candy, Snow, and Rock.
Physical Effects: Cocaine is a powerfully addictive
stimulant. Cocaines immediate physical effects are euphoria, increased energy, reduced fatigue, and mental clarity. These
effects are short-lived and are replaced by the coke crash, which includes depression, irritability, and fatigue.
Dangers: Short term effects of cocaine use include
increased heart rate, temperature, and blood pressure; dilated pupils, and muscle spasms. In addition, users often become
extremely physically addicted to cocaine and even first-time users run the risk of death from heart attack. Long-term use
of cocaine can cause severe medical and psychological problems such as convulsions, paranoia, and extreme aggression. Long-term
use can be fatal, as it may result in heart attacks, seizures, strokes, respiratory failure, or cerebral hemmorage.
Description: Cocaine is usually distributed in one
of two forms: Cocaine Hydrochloride is a white, crystalline powder. It is either snorted or dissolved in water and
injected. Crack is cocaine hydrochloride that has been processed with ammonia or sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and
water into freebase cocaine. Crack looks like chunks, chips, or rocks and can be smoked.
Distribution Methods: Cocaine is usually transported
to this country from South America.
THIS HAS TO BE STOPPED! PLEASE READ EXCERPT BELOW FROM 'NATIONAL FAMILIES IN ACTION'.
Click on the site map above for more information
|National Families in Action |
Drug Abuse Update Online
Group Collects 107,000 Signatures to Legalize Marijuana in Nevada
June 21, 2002 -- The march to legalize drugs pushes on.
Nevadans for Responsible Law Enforcement turned in 107,000 petition
signatures for a ballot initiative that will legalize possession of up to 3 ounces of marijuana for recreational use for everyone
over age 21. The effort is financed by the Washington D.C.-based Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). The measure also requires
the state to grow, tax, and distribute marijuana to retail stores for sale to the public. To place the initiative on the ballot,
the group needs 61,000 valid signatures. The validation process is under way. Because ballot initiatives change the state's
constitution, voters would have to approve the initiative again in 2004 before it could become law.
Meanwhile, MPP is collecting signatures in Washington D.C. to place
a medical marijuana initiative on that city's 2002 ballot. D.C. voters approved such an initiative in 1998, but Congress invalidated
the results. Since the medical marijuana initiative drive began in the mid-1990s, critics have charged that advocates are
using the issue as a wedge to legalize marijuana for all use. The introduction of the Nevada legalization petition confirms
critics' concerns. A spokeswoman for Nevadans for Responsible Law Enforcement says similar efforts are under way in other
The Marijuana Reform Party of New York will try to win 50,000 votes
in the 2000 election to become an official political party. It hopes to persuade the state legislature to legalize marijuana
for medical use.
Legalization advocates have also tried to move their agenda via
a second initiative strategy, which they publicize as "treatment rather than incarceration" for nonviolent drug offenders.
However, the fine print in these initiatives not only greatly weakens drug laws, but makes it difficult for addicts to get
to and stay in treatment. The Drug Policy Alliance (the Lindesmith Centers East and West, Drug Policy Foundation, Campaign
for New Drug Policies, Americans for Medical Rights, and others) sponsored California Proposition 36, which voters passed
in the 2000 election. Prop 36 was financed by George Soros, Peter Lewis, and John Sperling, the same three men who funded
all the medical marijuana initiatives passed to date. While promoted as a measure for first-and second-time offenders, the
average Prop 36 participant has 14 prior arrests, 3 felony convictions, and 5 misdemeanor convictions, according to The
Los Angeles Times. Preliminary reports say that nearly half of those released from prison fail to show up for treatment.
The Drug Policy Alliance announces that it is "circulating petitions
to put the Treatment Instead of Jail for Certain Non-Violent Drug Offenders Initiative of 2002' on the November 2002 ballot
in Washington DC." The Alliance claims that "this initiative will offer treatment instead of incarceration for first- and
second-time non-violent drug offenders."
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© Copyright 2001 National Families in Action. All rights
Questions? Write to email@example.com.
Last updated: 06/24/2002 10:38:23
June 02, 02
Please take a few moments to read and respond to the notice below:
A DRUG ABUSE UPDATE FROM NATIONAL FAMILIES IN ACTION
Cadbury Schweppes Marketing Candy Ecstasy to Australian Teenagers
31, 2002 - An Australia subsidiary of Cadbury Schweppes has produced a new candy that looks like the illegal drug ecstasy.
"The sugar-free '24-7' mints are marketed by Cadbury in push-button packs containing white pill-shaped mints.
An official website for the mints features '24-7' adventures in a nightclub with a cartoon DJ shaking a container of the mints
as he mixes dance music," says the Australian newspaper, The Advertiser.
Australian health officials have expressed
concern about a product made to look like an illegal drug being marketed to impressionable teenagers.
also concerned that someone could surreptitiously replace the mints with ecstasy because they look so similar. The health
officials have set up a working group to explore how to regulate such a product.
Interested readers who wish to prevent
Cadbury from marketing '24-7' mints in the U.S. may wish to write Brad Irwin, President, Mott's Inc. (Mott's parent company
is Cadbury Schweppes, London), P.O. Box 3800, Stamford, CT 06905-0800.
Sources: "Lollie Resembling Drug Causes
Concern," Australian Broadcasting Company, May 12, 2002; "Concerns Over Mints Shaped Like Ecstasy Drug," The Advertiser, May
29, 2002; Mott's Inc. corporate website at www.motts.com
Fri, 29 Sep 2000
Source: Collegiate Times (VA)
Copyright: 2000 Collegiate Times
Address: 363 Squires Student Center, Blacksburg, VA 24061-0546
Author: Daniel Longest DRUG LAWS NECESSARY AND LOGICAL
It's been said marijuana is less harmful then
alcohol and cigarettes and nowhere near as addictive.
Proponents of legalization make lots of different arguments
about the benefits of the drug and the "uselessness" of punishing users, but all of these are dangerous and erroneous beliefs.
The effects of marijuana are well documented in many studies. Some effects include dizziness, trouble walking,
bloodshot eyes, and trouble judging distances and colors ( www.drugfreeamerica.org ).
also been reported that smoking five marijuana cigarettes in a week does the same damage to your lungs as does smoking a pack
of cigarettes a day for the same period ( www.drugfreeamerica.org ).
Kandel, an addiction epidemiologist at Columbia University, analyzed data from the U.S. National Household Survey on
Drug Abuse and concluded about 15 percent of teenagers report three or more symptoms of dependence from a list of six possible
symptoms; anything from "feeling dependent" to being unable to quit to needing more and more of the drug each time ( "Marijuana
Special Report," www.newscientist.com, Feb. 21,
Since all of these symptomatic elements also apply to alcohol, it shows marijuana is just as addictive
as alcohol. Alcohol already causes one fatality every 32 minutes -- do we really want to take a chance with adding marijuana
to the mix ( National Highway Transportation Safety Administration )
Legalizing marijuana is a no-brainer: it is a
horrible idea that would cause an unending amount of problems. Alcohol alone causes an enormous number of traffic accidents
-- do you really want that number increased?
The November Coalition, an interest group for the legalization of marijuana,
states on their website that marriages suffer because of absent spouses who are incarcerated because of drug use.
judicial system, they claim, has no respect for families during prosecution. That's marvelous -- we should stop prosecuting
all criminals that have families to keep things fair.
In that case, serial killer Ted Bundy shouldn't have been
given the death penalty for butchering young women, he should still be free. He has family. Brilliant idea.
Some proponents of legalization say the U.S. Government is violating citizens' rights to choose by not legalizing
drugs. I could turn around and say, "My constitutional right to own dangerous assault weapons is being infringed upon,"
and it will sound just about as stupid and dangerous.
Assault weapons are banned for a good reason -- they are
far too dangerous and unnecessary. Marijuana, likewise, is banned because it is far too dangerous.
November Coalition goes so far as to say due to the "politics of prohibition" regarding marijuana, marijuana prices are up
to $2500 per pound , cocaine is 5 times more valuable than gold per ounce and "it is folly for government to defy human nature"
( www.november.org ).
also human nature to get into fist fights over disagreements, to lie, cheat and steal to get what we want. Let's go
ahead and make fraud and assault legal, while we're at it, since those things are human nature, too.
frightens me are the people for legalization who don't realize their arguments can be applied across the board to a variety
of topics no one in their right mind would legalize.
A lot of people claim marijuana is useful for medicinal
purposes, for example treating glaucoma, and it should be legal so more people could get it.
The FDA has stringent
guidelines regarding drugs on the market. Each one goes through rigorous testing to ensure usefulness and no harmful
Introducing a drug before it's ready is dangerous. You wouldn't risk that with Viagra or
Prozac so don't risk it with marijuana.
Even Libertarian Presidential Candidate
Harry Browne got into
the act saying, "It is not the government's business to tell people what they should or should not put in their bodies" (
www.norml.org ). He also
claims he would pardon every non-violent drug offender to make room for rapists, murderers and the like who got out on early
release and parole.
This says a great deal about how a lot of marijuana advocates feel that marijuana use is
not a crime and should not be punished.
There is nothing wrong with imprisoning people for using marijuana,
as it is still a crime.
If something must be changed, reform the parole and probation laws, but don't let criminals
As long as it is the law, it should and must be enforced.
What advocates fail to realize
is marijuana use is harmful, dangerous and still a crime, and just like murder, it must not be swayed by popular votes.
It must be punished.
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I AM CURRENTLY RESEARCHING VIRGINIA LAWS TO TRY TO FIND A LAW THAT STATES THAT A PERSON CAN BE ARRESTED FOR USING DRUGS.
I CAN'T FIND ONE, AND IF IT DOES NOT EXIST, I WILL TRY TO GET ONE PASSED. I CALLED THE SPOTSYLVANIA SHERIFFS'S OFFICE ON NUMEROUS
OCASSIONS TO REPORT A CRIME THAT I EITHER KNEW OR SUSPECTED THAT HE COMMITTED. MY HOPE WAS TO SAVE HIS LIFE BY HAVING HIM
IN JAIL, BECAUSE I THOUGHT THAT THEN HE COULD DETOX. I GAVE POLICE HIS NAME, DATE OF BIRTH, SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER, TAG NUMBER
OF HIS CAR, TOLD THEM THAT HE WAS DRIVING ON A SUSPENDED LISCENCE, TOLD THEM HE WAS USING, BUYING CRACK COCAINE, ON AND ON.
I TRIED MY BEST TO GET HIM ARRESTED! HE WAS BUSTED ON MY FRONT STEPS FOR POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA, RECIEVED AN ARREST WARRANT
IN THE MAIL FOR THE OFFENSE TWO WEEKS LATER, AND WHEN HE APPEARED IN COURT, IT WAS THROWN OUT BECAUSE THE ARRESTING OFFICER
DID NOT HAVE THE MARIJUANA THAT WAS SEIZED AS EVIDENCE!! WHAT HAPPENED TO IT? MAYBE THAT COULD HAVE BEEN THE START OF ANOTHER
REHAB! THERE ARE LAWS FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE CONVICTED OF POSSESSION OF DRUGS TO BE SENTENCED TO MANDATORY REHAB, BUT AS I MENTIONED
BEFORE, WE NEED A LAW THAT A PERSON CAN BE CHARGED FOR USING ILLEGAL DRUGS AND BE ENTITLED TO RECIEVE THE SAME MANDATORY REHAB
FOR THE OFFENSE. MY SON WAS CAUGHT AND SET FREE, HE HAD A CRIMINAL RECORD FOR OTHER OFFENSES ALSO. WHY DID THE SYSTEM SET
HIM FREE EACH TIME? WOULD IT HAVE SAVED HIS LIFE IF HE WERE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR HIS CRIMES? I WILL NEVER KNOW NOW.
Below you will find information on critera to be met for inclusion in Drug Court. I firmly believe that John would be alive
today if he had been convicted on the possession of marijuana charge. I wonder still what happened to the evidence that
was "lost" by the Spotsylvania County Detective that charged my son? If convicted, my son stood a good chance of
being able to attend Drug Court.
SENATE BILL NO. 591
Offered January 17, 2002
A BILL to amend the Code of Virginia by adding a section numbered 18.2-254.1, relating to drug treatment court programs.
Patrons-- Houck, Deeds, Edwards and Williams
Referred to Committee for Courts of Justice
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:
1. That the Code of Virginia is amended by adding a section numbered 18.2-254.1 as follows:
§ 18.2-254.1. Drug treatment court.
A. Administrative oversight for implementation of the drug treatment court shall be conducted by the Office of the Executive
Secretary of the Supreme Court of Virginia with the assistance of a state drug treatment court advisory committee. The Office
of the Executive Secretary shall be responsible for: (i) providing oversight for the distribution of funds for drug treatment
courts; (ii) providing technical assistance to drug treatment courts; (iii) providing training for judges who preside over
drug treatment courts; (iv) providing training to the providers of administrative, case management, and treatment services
to drug treatment courts; and (v) monitoring the completion of evaluations of the effectiveness and efficiency of drug treatment
courts in the Commonwealth.
B. A state drug treatment court advisory committee shall be established to: (i) evaluate and recommend standards for
the planning and implementation of drug treatment courts; (ii) assist in the evaluation of their effectiveness and efficiency;
and (iii) encourage and enhance cooperation among agencies that participate in their planning and implementation. The committee
shall be chaired by the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court or his designee and shall include a member of the Judicial
Conference of Virginia who presides over a drug treatment court, the agency head or his designee from the Department of Corrections,
Department of Criminal Justice Services, Department of Juvenile Justice, Department of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and
Substance Abuse Services, Community Corrections and Pretrial Services, Commonwealth Attorney's Association, Public Defender
Commission, Circuit Court Clerk's Association, Virginia Sheriff's Association, Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police, and
two representatives designated by the Virginia Association of Drug Courts.
C. Each jurisdiction or combination of jurisdictions that intends to establish a drug treatment court or continue the
operation of an existing court shall establish a local drug treatment court advisory committee. Jurisdictions that establish
separate adult and juvenile drug treatment courts may establish an advisory committee for each such court. Each advisory committee
shall ensure quality, efficiency, and fairness in the planning, implementation, and operation of the drug treatment court
that serves the jurisdiction or combination of jurisdictions. Advisory committee membership shall include the following: (i)
the drug treatment court judge; (ii) the attorney for the Commonwealth; (iii) the public defender or a member of the local
criminal defense bar in jurisdictions with no public defender; (iv) the clerk of the court in which the drug treatment court
is located; (v) a representative of the Virginia Department of Corrections or the Department of Juvenile Justice from the
local office that serves the jurisdiction or combination of jurisdictions; (vi) a representative of Community Corrections
or Pretrial Services; (vii) a local law-enforcement officer; (viii) a representative of the Department of Mental Health, Mental
Retardation and Substance Abuse Services or a representative of local drug treatment providers; (ix) the drug court administrator;
(x) the county administrator or city manager; and (xi) anyone else selected by the drug treatment court advisory committee.
D. Each local drug treatment court advisory committee shall establish criteria for the eligibility and participation
of offenders who have been determined to be addicted to or dependent upon drugs. Subject to the provisions of this section,
the establishment of a drug treatment court shall not limit the discretion of the attorney for the Commonwealth to prosecute
any criminal case. Anyone convicted of a violent felony, as defined in § 17.1-805 or § 19.2-297.1, within the preceding ten years, shall not be eligible for participation in any drug treatment court.
E. Each drug treatment court advisory committee shall establish policies and procedures for the operation of the court
to attain the following goals: (i) effective integration of drug and alcohol treatment services with criminal justice system
case processing; (ii) enhanced public safety through intensive offender supervision and drug treatment; (iii) prompt identification
and placement of eligible participants; (iv) efficient access to alcohol, drug, and related treatment and rehabilitation services;
(v) verified participant abstinence through frequent alcohol and other drug testing; (vi) prompt response to participants'
noncompliance with program requirements; (vii) ongoing judicial interaction with each drug court participant; (viii) ongoing
monitoring and evaluation of program effectiveness and efficiency; (ix) ongoing interdisciplinary education and training in
support of program effectiveness and efficiency; and (x) ongoing collaboration among drug treatment courts, public agencies,
and community-based organizations to enhance program effectiveness and efficiency.
F. Participation by an offender in a drug treatment court is voluntary and only after a written plea agreement entered
into by and between the offender and the Commonwealth with the concurrence of the court. The court may defer further proceedings
and place the defendant in the drug treatment court upon terms and conditions as set out in the plea agreement and as determined
by the local drug treatment court advisory committee. Upon successful completion, the judge shall dispose of the case in the
manner prescribed by the plea agreement and the applicable policies and procedures adopted by the local drug treatment court
G. Nothing in this section precludes the establishment of substance abuse treatment programs pursuant to the provisions
of § 18.2-251.
H. Each offender shall contribute to the cost of the substance abuse treatment he receives pursuant to guidelines developed
by the drug treatment court advisory committee.
I. Nothing contained in this section shall confer a right or an expectation of a right to treatment for a defendant.
J. The Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court of Virginia shall, with the assistance of the state drug
treatment court advisory committee, develop a statewide evaluation model and conduct ongoing evaluations of the effectiveness
and efficiency of all local drug treatment courts. A report of these evaluations shall be submitted to the General Assembly
annually by December 1. Each local drug treatment court advisory committee shall submit evaluative reports to the Office of
the Executive Secretary as requested.
Legislative Information System
§ 18.2-251. Persons charged with first offense may be placed on probation; conditions; screening, assessment and education
programs; drug tests; costs and fees; violations; discharge.
Whenever any person who has not previously been convicted of any offense under this article or under any statute of the
United States or of any state relating to narcotic drugs, marijuana, or stimulant, depressant, or hallucinogenic drugs, or
has not previously had a proceeding against him for violation of such an offense dismissed as provided in this section, pleads
guilty to or enters a plea of not guilty to possession of a controlled substance under § 18.2-250 or to possession of marijuana under § 18.2-250.1, the court, upon such plea if the facts found by the court would justify a finding of guilt, without entering a judgment
of guilt and with the consent of the accused, may defer further proceedings and place him on probation upon terms and conditions.
As a term or condition, the court shall require the accused to undergo a substance abuse assessment pursuant to § 18.2-251.01 or § 19.2-299.2, as appropriate, and enter a treatment and/or education program, if available, such as, in the opinion of the court, may
be best suited to the needs of the accused based upon consideration of the substance abuse assessment. This program may be
located in the judicial district in which the charge is brought or in any other judicial district as the court may provide.
The services shall be provided by (i) a program licensed by the Department of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and Substance
Abuse Services, by a similar program which is made available through the Department of Corrections, (ii) a community corrections
program established pursuant to § 53.1-180, or (iii) an ASAP program certified by the Commission on VASAP.
The court shall require the person entering such program under the provisions of this section to pay all or part of the
costs of the program, including the costs of the screening, assessment, testing, and treatment, based upon the accused's ability
to pay unless the person is determined by the court to be indigent.
As a condition of probation, the court shall require the accused (i) to successfully complete the treatment or education
program, (ii) to remain drug and alcohol free during the period of probation and submit to such tests during that period as
may be necessary and appropriate to determine if the accused is drug and alcohol free, (iii) to make reasonable efforts to
secure and maintain employment, and (iv) to comply with a plan of at least 100 hours of community service for a felony and
up to twenty-four hours of community service for a misdemeanor. Such testing shall be conducted by personnel of the supervising
probation agency or personnel of any program or agency approved by the supervising probation agency.
The court shall, unless done at arrest, order the accused to report to the original arresting law-enforcement agency to
submit to fingerprinting.
Upon violation of a term or condition, the court may enter an adjudication of guilt and proceed as otherwise provided.
Upon fulfillment of the terms and conditions, the court shall discharge the person and dismiss the proceedings against him.
Discharge and dismissal under this section shall be without adjudication of guilt and is a conviction only for the purposes
of applying this section in subsequent proceedings.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, whenever a court places an individual on probation upon terms and
conditions pursuant to this section, such action shall be treated as a conviction for purposes of §§ 18.2-259.1, 22.1-315 and 46.2-390.1, and the driver's license forfeiture provisions of those sections shall be imposed. The provisions of this paragraph shall
not be applicable to any offense for which a juvenile has had his license suspended or denied pursuant to § 16.1-278.9 for the same offense.
(Code 1950, § 54-524.101:3; 1972, c. 798; 1975, cc. 14, 15; 1976, c. 181; 1979, c. 435; 1983, c. 513; 1991, c.
482; 1992, cc. 58, 833; 1993, c. 410; 1997, c. 380; 1998, cc. 688, 783, 840; 2000, cc. 1020, 1041; 2001, cc. 430, 450, 827.)
§ 18.2-250.1. Possession of marijuana unlawful.
A. It is unlawful for any person knowingly or intentionally to possess marijuana unless the substance was obtained directly
from, or pursuant to, a valid prescription or order of a practitioner while acting in the course of his professional practice,
or except as otherwise authorized by the Drug Control Act (§ 54.1-3400 et seq.).
Upon the prosecution of a person for violation of this section, ownership or occupancy of the premises or vehicle upon
or in which marijuana was found shall not create a presumption that such person either knowingly or intentionally possessed
Any person who violates this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and be confined in jail not more than thirty days
and a fine of not more than $500, either or both; any person, upon a second or subsequent conviction of a violation of this
section, shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.
GETTING THE MESSAGE OUT!
Today is January 23, 2003. The article below
appeared in today's newspaper. This is a step in the right direction, charges like this will send a message
to the public that contributing to someone's death can leave you legally responsible.
Charges follow fatalities
Man charged with involuntary manslaughter
in wreck that killed four young people.
July wreck killed four
A 33-year-old Spotsylvania County man has been charged with four counts of involuntary manslaughter in connection with
a July 5 crash that killed four young people and badly injured a fifth.
Billy Teal of 9707 Colby Terrace is accused of regularly providing alcohol and marijuana to underage people at his home,
according to state Alcoholic Beverage Control special agent Lisa Wright.
One of those alleged gatherings took place shortly before the grisly July 5 crash on Brock Road. A vehicle that had just
left Teal's home crashed into a tree and a concrete pillar before overturning.
The driver, 19-year-old Stephens S. Payne Jr., and three of his passengers--Amanda Maciulewicz, 14, Kelli Jenkins, 18,
and Travis Meadows, 22--were killed in the crash. Meadows lived with Teal.
A fifth person in the car, 16-year-old Lacey Walker, survived but is still suffering from the effects of the wreck.
A special grand jury that has been meeting since October secretly issued indictments against Teal last week, Wright said.
Teal turned himself in to authorities yesterday.
In addition to the manslaughter charges, Teal is charged with six counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor,
eight counts of aiding and abetting and one count of distributing marijuana.
Wright said a lengthy investigation showed that teen-agers have been regularly gathering at Teal's home to drink and smoke
marijuana for at least two years. Some contributed money in ex-change for illegal substances, she said.
"It was known as the place to go if you were underage and wanted a place to drink," said Wright, who was assisted in the
investigation by special agent Carter Wells.
The investigation is continuing, Wright said, and charges against at least one other person are anticipated.
State police at the time estimated that Payne's 2002 Mitsubishi Lancer was traveling between 80 and 100 mph when the car
went out of control on a sharp curve.
The speed limit in that area was 45 mph, but a caution sign just before that curve urged drivers to slow to 30 mph.
Rescue workers described the scene as one of the worst they'd encountered in recent years. One victim landed in a tree
after the crash.
Teal's home was well known to Spotsylvania authorities even before the crash. The home, a trailer, has been raided three
times in recent years by county narcotics officers, according to court records. Marijuana and related paraphernalia were seized
The most recent raid occurred in April. In an affidavit for the April search, police said they'd received a number of complaints
about drug activity there. They had an informant make a controlled buy before raiding the home several days later.
Teal was already facing a possession of marijuana with an intent to distribute charge. A trial on that charge is scheduled
for Feb. 21.
Date published: Fri, 01/24/2003
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