The Interim Study Committee on Criminal Law and Sentencing Policy met Wednesday, Sept. 8 to hear testimony on the effects of methamphetamine on state, local governments and individuals. Over three hours of testimony was given on the costs of enforcement and clean up related to methamphetamine, the implementation and effectiveness of a pseudopthedrine (PSE) tracking system and whether or not ephedrine and PSE should be classified as controlled substances.
According to the Indiana State Police, the cost of methamphetamine to the state of Indiana as of 2005 was $1.871 billion for drug treatment, health care, crime and criminal justice, child endangerment, and clean-up. This figure represents 8 percent of the total spent nationally. Read more from the the Indiana State Police 2010 Report on Methamphetamine (PDF)>>
Even more daunting, are the statistics regarding the impact of methamphetamine on children. The Indiana State Police report that 35 percent of children removed from lab scenes test positive for exposure to the drug.
To gain perspective on how other states are addressing these issues, testimony was given by Rob Bovett, Oregon District Attorney, on effective PSE control and two alternatives, namely, returning PSE to a prescription drug or using an electronic tracking system for retail PSE sales. In 2006, Oregon returned PSE to a prescription drug, as it was prior to 1976. Since then, PSE smurfing in Oregon has been eliminated, and meth labs in Oregon nearly eliminated.
[The term “smurfing” is applied to operations where people scour multiple pharmacies and pay individuals to purchase over-the-counter medicines containing PSE as a less traceable means of acquiring ingredients for cooking methamphetamine.]
Other agencies represented during the testimony heard during the committee:
- Drug Enforcement Agency Indianapolis Office
- Drug Endangered Children Training Center
- Indiana Prosecuting Attorney’s Council
- Indiana Chiefs of Police
- Vigo County Sheriffs Department
- The City of Plymouth
- Consumer Healthcare Products Association
- Indiana Sheriff’s Association
- Daviess County Sheriff’s Department, Kentucky
- Louisville Metro Police Department
- Bay County, Florida
- Indiana State Medical Association
For more information on meth suppression laws and enforcement in Indiana, visit the Indiana Methamphetamine Investigation System website.
Educational programs on meth, meth labs and the dangers associated with these environments, are available through the Indiana State Police. Please contact the MSS office at (317) 234-4591 or within Indiana 1-877-MSS-METH (677-6384). You may also contact the Indiana State Police District where you need the program and request to speak to the Meth Suppression Section Trooper or Public Information Officer assigned to that district.
How do I report suspected meth activity?
You can report suspected meth activity online or by calling the Methamphetamine Tip Line at 1-800-453-4756. All the information submitted will be reviewed, researched and assigned to an officer for follow-up.