Latest news: 05-10-2010
Drug-crime enforcement: Consider the children
IA - The door flies open. Police officers fill the living room, clutching guns and shouting through respirator-masks strapped to their faces. The suspects are handcuffed and shoved outside to waiting squad cars, their lights flashing. "And there are little babies in the house," said Dubuque Assistant County Attorney Chris Corken, recounting the scene of a methamphetamine lab bust. Several years ago, during the height of the methamphetamine lab boom, county officials set out to develop the best system to protect children in homes with drugs. The biggest breakthrough in their system: applying child-endangerment laws to drug exposure, not just physical abuse. "It's almost shameful to say that it had never occurred to us, because it's clearly been an issue," she said. "There's nothing much more harmful than living in the drug trade, it's just that we never made that leap."
Meth labs fade, but seizures are up in Hennepin County, Minn.
MN - Tucked under driver's seats, stashed behind gas caps or mixed into window washer fluid bottles, hidden loads of highly purified methamphetamine from Mexican drug labs arrive daily in the Twin Cities. It's a lucrative trade that appears to be surging in the metro area, as evidenced by a dramatic spike in seizures of the powerfully addictive and destructive stimulant. Even as meth labs largely disappeared from Minnesota because of restrictions on the sale of chemicals used to make meth, use of the drug has held steady, courtesy of a Mexican network that was eager to replace the local production, according to drug experts.
Drug fight is a shared effort
IA - Communication and cooperation are key in fighting the war on drugs, according to one of the member agencies of the North Central Iowa Narcotics Task Force. “It’s part of the big C, the communication, and that’s what has to happen in public safety is communication and networking with other agencies,” said Floyd County Sheriff Rick Lynch. The task force was created in 1989. The founding members of the task force were Cerro Gordo Sheriff Kevin Pals, the late Forest City Police Chief Doug Book, former Mason City Police Chief Gene Kleinow and former Franklin County Sheriff Duane Payne.
Recovered meth addicts share their experiences
MN - Meth sounded like an escape to Steve after he lost his girlfriend, got caught driving drunk and ended up on New Year's Eve looking for something to ease the pain. But within a day of taking it, the drug flipped his life in bucolic Spring Valley, Minn., upside down. "The first day I started smoking meth, a gentleman taught me how to make it,