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A NEW WRINKLE: Meth remains prime problem, but other drugs emerging

February 12, 2014

Editor’s note: The following is the third of a three-part series on methamphetamine in Whitley County.
COLUMBIA CITY — Whitley County Circuit Court saw two individuals plead guilty Monday to dealing prescription drugs. Those court hearings highlighted a fact of modern life in Whitley County and Northeast Indiana in 2014 — Methamphetamine remains the most problematic drug, but it is hardly the only one to cause problems in the community.

“We have seen this problem in the past few years,” Rentschler said. “Prescription drug use is going up. Our task force is focusing on it more.”

Overall, the Whitley County Drug Task Force had nearly 30 cases in 2013 that were related to illegal use or dealing of prescription drugs.
Whitley County Drug Task Force Detective Bill Brice said he has seen an increase in the county, and the problem with prescription drugs is that some are narcotics, and some are amphetamines.

The type of drug which a person is seeking can sometimes drive them to illegal drugs as an alternative.

“It’s a double-edged sword,” Brice said. “If we were able to successfully keep people from getting narcotics they don’t need from prescriptions, then they will turn to heroin.”

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