Levine Law’s collection of news articles compiles stories pertaining to the use and possession of opioid drugs in the state of Wisconsin.
Police: Man Calls 911 to Help Recover Stolen Heroin
News reports and especially social media seem to love to report stories involving strange antics related to alleged criminal activity. The idea of a bank robber leaving his or her wallet with a driver’s license or other form of ID inside with a teller is the kind of story that may earn a “dumbest criminal of the week” headline.
An Ohio man is getting a lot of attention after officials released a 911 call from an alleged drug addict looking for police assistance, according to News 5 Cleveland. Along with the audio, authorities released a separate video that police claim shows the young man pulling suspected contraband from his pocket during police questioning. The stir started when the 20-year allegedly called 911 asking for authorities to send a police dog. Officials claim the young man requested the help of a canine because some woman allegedly stole his heroin.
Apparently, police responded to investigate. Authorities say that the man told police a woman stole his money. Officers asked the man about the heroin, according to recent news reports. During the encounter, authorities say that body cam footage shows the young man reach into his pocket and pull out a “brown waxy substance.” Law enforcement seized the unidentified substance. Officials expect that it is heroin, and plan to charge the man with a felony drug possession crime.
The footage has garnered wide attention, poking fun at the young man. News reports say that the alleged drug bust is not the only strange encounter this particular person has had with law enforcement. Media reports claim that the same person made national headlines in January after allegedly relieving himself on the leg of a police officer on Disney property on New Year’s Day.
In recent weeks, this blog has discussed topics concerning proposed legislation in Wisconsin over the public release of body camera footage and bills aimed at combating the state’s opioid epidemic. Unfortunately, many people are accused of possessing and using a variety of drugs after an encounter with police. Police procedures and evidence should be reviewed by a defense lawyer when an investigation turns into criminal charges. Criminal cases include rules and standards that do not apply in the court of public opinion. A strong defense attorney knows how to analyze and evaluate the evidence to protect the rights of someone accused of an offense.
Assembly Passes Package of Bills to Combat State’s Opioid Epidemic
Like every other state, Wisconsin has seen the number of overdoses, fatalities and arrests related to opioids skyrocket in recent years. Furthermore, much like its counterparts, Wisconsin has also struggled to find a way to combat what has clearly become a public health crisis.
As disturbing as all this is, the good news is that some much-needed assistance may be on the horizon in the form of a package of bills recently passed by the Assembly, which rather than adopting a punitive approach — more arrests, more prosecutions, etc. — instead focus on getting people the help they need.
Specifically, the Assembly passed the following opioid-related measures last week during a special session called by Governor Scott Walker in January:
- Special Assembly Bill 1: Provides volunteers, school employees and residence hall directors with immunity from civil lawsuits relating to the administration of drugs designed to reverse opioid overdoses provided they have received the proper training and call 911 as soon as possible.
- Special Assembly Bill 2: Provides over $2 million in annual grants to counties willing to provide treatment to individuals with substance abuse issues rather than putting them behind bars (i.e., diversion)
- Special Assembly Bill 7: Provides $63,000 in annual grants to hospitals who hire more physicians specializing in addiction treatment
- Special Assembly Bill 8: Calls for the creation of 2-3 new regional opioid treatment centers funded by $1 million per year
- Special Assembly Bill 9: Allocates $500,000 to a new program designed to provide physicians with expert guidance on addiction treatment
These bills now head to the Senate for consideration. Given the bipartisan support they enjoyed in the Assembly, their chances of passing appear promising.
Here’s hoping we see this more progressive approach to fighting the opioid epidemic become the new norm.
If you’ve been arrested for any manner of drug-related offense, consider speaking with a skilled legal professional who can protect your rights, your freedom and your future as soon as possible.