JERSEY CITY and NEWARK, New Jersey. According to the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety, earlier this year two men were sent to prison after authorities seized record amounts of fentanyl. Fentanyl is incredibly lethal and is responsible for many overdoses. One of the ways the state of New Jersey has approached the opioid crisis is to prosecute major drug traffickers, prosecute doctors who overprescribe opioids, and fight drug manufacturers who profit from abuse and overuse of these drugs. In 2016 alone, 800 people died due to fentanyl overdoses. Fentanyl is often mixed with heroin or cocaine to increase its potency. However, when dealers make dosage errors, users can suffer overdoses.
While it makes sense to prosecute drug traffickers and doctors who prescribe these drugs indiscriminately, there is some conflict about how to handle those who suffer from addiction. Many believe that putting people in jail for possession doesn’t solve the problem and punishes individuals who need treatment, not jail time.
The Atlantic recently reported on the complexity of the problem. In a recent account, a police officer, fearing for his daughter’s safety, put her in jail when he learned that she was addicted to opioids, believing this would help her detox. While jail can often lead to quick detox, abstinence is rarely permanent. Individuals are at the greatest risk of overdosing in the two weeks following their release from jail. When the police officer’s daughter was released, she relapsed and died. The situation has led that former police officer who once relished putting individuals in jail to reconsider the effectiveness of putting addicts in jail.
Many advocates for addiction victims believe that treatment is the answer. Rather than putting those charged with possession in jail, the justice system should put more effort into developing effective treatment programs. As a former prosecutor in the Somerset County Drug Court, I have unique understanding of working with drug addicts and strategies to help addicts charged with crimes avoid serious jail time, and hopefully, cope with their addictions.
If you are facing criminal charges in New Jersey for possession of prescription opioids, heroin, or cocaine, you might not know what to do next. You could be facing jail time, a criminal record, and fines. The Law Office of Eric M. Mark are Newark and Jersey City drug crime lawyers who work closely with individuals who are facing drug crime charges. Our firm can review the evidence against you and help you plan a roadmap going forward. In some cases, our attorneys may be able to negotiate entry into treatment programs rather than jail time. If you or a loved one is facing criminal drug charges, this might be the most stressful time in your life. You may be wondering whether putting your loved one in jail might help them detox. However, the facts show that treatment is best, and jail time only often provides a temporary respite from the cycle of addiction.
Seek help today. The Law Office of Eric M. Mark are drug crime lawyers in Newark and Jersey City who may be able to help.
The Law Office of Eric M. Mark
Address: 201 Washington St.
Newark, NJ 07102
Phone: (973) 453-2009
JERSEY CITY OFFICE
By Appointment Only
121 Newark Ave., Suite 515
Jersey City, NJ 07302
Phone: (201) 713-2227