AG’s Office Busts Alleged Steroid, Prescription Pill Rings

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — Correctional officers, a pharmacist technician and a recently-released Dallas Cowboys guard were among the Luzerne County residents charged Wednesday in connection with two alleged anabolic steroid rings.

A state Attorney General’s Office investigation dubbed “Operation Gym Candy” led to the arrest of 13 suspects from five Northeast Pennsylvania counties who are alleged to have participated in the distribution of steroids and prescription drugs.

All suspects were released on varying amounts of bail, ranging from $1,000 to $50,000.

According to court papers, Brian Laubach, 36, of Berwick, and Richard Piccarreta, 49, of Plymouth, each ran respective anabolic steroid manufacturing and sales operations, working alongside others to distribute the Schedule III substances to customers locally and through the Internet.

Read more: http://www.timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/50413107/Alleged-drug-rings-busted

Drug Overdose Deaths Spur Legislation

Map of Pennsylvania

Map of Pennsylvania (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

HARRISBURG, PA – Concerns about a spate of drug overdose deaths in Pennsylvania have put the spotlight on legislation to create a state database to monitor illegal use of prescription drugs.

The issue surfaced last month during state Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane’s budget hearing before the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Passage of monitoring legislation is key to combatting illegal drug use, Kane said. Prescription drug abuse is often a gateway to heroin use, she said.

“We have a heroin problem,” Kane said. “We also have a prescription pill problem.”

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/drug-overdose-deaths-spur-legislation-1.1647566

Enhanced by Zemanta

How Heroin Abuse Has Become Epidemic

1044756_392391437532570_1638549602_nEditor’s note:  And the last two paragraphs are about a heroin death in Pottstown!  Wake up borough officials!!!!! Stop denying this problem exists! The man who robbed National Penn Bank on High Street was a heroin addict and high at the time.  It’s not a “bump in the road” or a “perception problem” as your soon-to-be ex-mayor likes to tell people.

Heroin-related overdoses jumped nearly 250 percent between 2010 and 2012 in Philadelphia and, depending on how they are measured, slightly more in Montgomery County. In Kentucky, they quadrupled in just one year.

Experts say the culprit is actually prescription painkillers. Abuse of the expensive narcotics leads to tolerance – and cravings for more and more. Heroin is the cheap and more powerful alternative.

Experts point to a series of events that began when the Food and Drug Administration in 1997 proposed easing the way for advertising of prescription medications on broadcast television, which almost no other country does as freely. Industry spending on direct-to-consumer advertising rose tenfold in five years. Prescriptions written for opioid painkillers such as Vicodin and OxyContin soon rose more than 500 percent.

“As a culture, we are just very used to, ‘You have a problem, get a prescription,’ ” said Jay Unick, an assistant professor at the University of Maryland School of Social work, who studies how public policies affect behavioral health outcomes.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/health/20131107__We_lost_an_entire_generation__to_heroin.html#oec76sPDSpAZbJT2.99

Man Admits Robbing, Beating Three Elderly Mennonite Women; Charge Of Ethnic Intimidation Dropped

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Dereck Taylor Holt, well-spoken, polite and intelligent, pleaded guilty this morning to what he called “utterly loathsome actions” at the home of three elderly sisters in December.

Holt quoted C.S. Lewis, apologized to the victims and blamed prescription drugs for warping his mind during an elegant 5-minute statement before Lancaster County President Judge Joseph Madenspacher.

“I’m not a heartless being.  I’m not an empty carcass incapable of contributing to society,” Holt, 24, told the judge.  “But I can’t defend these actions.

“This was the culmination of a long, two-year addiction to substances.  These actions wouldn’t have happened without my alarming abuse of mind-altering prescription medication.”

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/article/local/855631_Man-admits-robbing–beating-three-elderly-Mennonite–women–charge-of-ethnic-intimidation-dropped.html#ixzz2UnI0JpjU

Free National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

Tri-County Community Network Supports Drug Enforcement Administration

Pottstown, Pa. (October 20, 2011) – The Tri-County Community Network (TCN), a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health, social and environmental conditions in Western Montgomery, Northern Chester and Eastern Berks counties, is renewing support this month for efforts by area law enforcement agencies to collect unused prescription drugs, taking them out of the hands of youth and helping to protect public water supplies, as part of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.

Casey Jones, a member of TCN’s Education & Advocacy Team and the C.A.R.E. committee, said the organization is promoting positive response by its members and their communities to the 3rd National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, to be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, October 29, at various area locations.

Law enforcement agencies will be supervising free, no-questions-asked collection of unused prescription drugs, often found accumulating in home medicine cabinets and drawers, at several community locations, including designated supermarkets and pharmacies.

Collection sites within the Greater Pottstown area include:

  • Pottstown – Giant Food Store, 86 Glocker Way, Pottstown (North Coventry Police) and Lower Pottsgrove Police Department, 2199 Buchert Road
  • Birdsboro – Birdsboro Pharmacy Parking Lot, 310 West Main Street
  • Gilbertsville – Giant Markets, 173 Holly Road (Douglass Township Police)
  • Phoenixville – Borough Hall, 140 Church Street, and Giant Food Store at 700 Nutt Road
  • Schwenksville – Pennsylvania State Police – Skippack Barracks, 2047-C Bridge Road
  • Zieglerville – Lower Frederick Township Police, 53 Spring Mount Road
  • Oaks – Upper Providence Township Police, 286 Black Rock Road

Individuals also may drop off prescription drugs at other locations found at the DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take Back website at www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback.

Jones, a families advocate who undertakes community outreach as part of the Transformation Initiative for Building Healthy Communities Through Healthy Families, said the national collection program complements a significant number of TCN’s own collaborative initiatives in the areas of health, education, environmental awareness, youth and family development, assistance to caregivers, and homelessness.

“Prescription drugs have become a new drug of choice for youth,” he said, noting that national survey results from the DEA found one in seven teens admitting to abusing prescription drugs to get high during the past year, with 60 percent of teens who have abused prescription pain relievers having done so before the age of 15.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has warned that unused prescriptions, poured down the drain or flushed down the toilet, may enter streams and rivers and, ultimately, end up in municipal water supplies.

In addition to promoting proper disposal of unused prescription drugs, TCN is seeking to educate the public, including children, about the dangers associated with un-prescribed use of medicines.  It will be providing posters and other materials to its members and the public for distribution to and education of individuals, employees and clients.

During the last National Prescription Drug Take Back in April 2011, over a half ton of unused prescription drugs were collected in both Montgomery and Chester counties, reflecting over 12.5% of the total state-wide collection total.

Members of the public who would like to promote this activity with posters or handbills, that also can be used as church bulletin inserts, may obtain them from TCN at info@tcnetwork.org.

Additional information about the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day initiative, along with the searchable database of collection sites in neighboring areas and nationally, is available at www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback.

TriCounty Community Network Supports Drug Enforcement Administration National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

The seal of the United States Drug Enforcement...

Image via Wikipedia

Pottstown, Pa. (April 26, 2011) – TriCounty Community Network (TCN), a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health, social and environmental conditions in Western Montgomery, Northern Chester and Eastern Berks counties in Pennsylvania, today announced its support of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day initiative on April 30 to help protect youth and the environment from the negative potential impacts of unused prescription drugs.

Casey Jones, a member of TCN’s Education & Advocacy Team and the C.A.R.E. committee, said the organization is promoting to its members and their communities participation in this important program, which provides the opportunity for free, safe disposal of unused prescription drugs that often are found in home medicine cabinets.

No-questions-asked Take Back Day collection sites will be open between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Saturday, April 30, at several area community locations, including designated supermarkets, under jurisdiction of participating police departments.

        Collection sites within the Greater Pottstown area include:

Pottstown – Giant Markets, 86 Glocker Way, Pottstown (North CoventryPolice) and Lower Pottsgrove Police Department,2199 Buchert Road.

Douglassville -Amity Township Police, 2004 Weavertown Road.

Gilbertsville – Giant Markets, 173 Holly Road(Douglass Township Police).

Phoenixville – Police Department, 140 Church Street, and Giant Markets at 700 Nutt Road.

Schwenksville -Pennsylvania State Police – Skippack Barracks, 2047-C Bridge Road.

Zieglerville -Lower Frederick Township Police, 53 Spring Mount Road.

Oaks -Upper Providence Township Police, 286 Black Rock Road.

Individuals may also drop off prescription drugs at other locations found at the DEA’s National Prescription Drug Take Back website at www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback.

Jones, who undertakes community outreach as a Transformation Initiative for Building Healthy Communities Through Healthy Families, said the national collection program complements a significant number of TCN’s own collaborative initiatives in the areas of health, education, environmental awareness, youth and family development, assistance to caregivers and homelessness.

“Prescription drugs are becoming a new drug of choice for youth,” he said, noting that national survey results from the DEA found one in seven teens admitting to abusing prescription drugs to get high during the past year, with 60 percent of teens who have abused prescription pain relievers having done so before the age of 15.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has warned that unused prescriptions, poured down the drain or flushed down the toilet, may enter streams and rivers and, ultimately, end up in municipal water supplies.

In addition to promoting proper disposal of unused prescription drugs, TCN is seeking to educate the public, including children, about the dangers associated with un-prescribed use of medicines.  It will be providing posters and other materials to its members and others for distribution to and education of individuals, employees and clients.

Members of the public that also would like to promote this activity with posters or handbills, that also can be used as church bulletin inserts, may obtain them from TCN at info@tcnetwork.org.

Additional information about the National Prescription Drug Take Back Day initiative, along with the searchable database of collection sites in neighboring areas, is available at www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback.

About TriCounty Community Network                 

TCN is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, membership-based organization that partners with nonprofits, businesses and community members to improve health, social and environmental conditions.  Serving Western Montgomery, Northern Chester and Eastern Berks counties in Pennsylvania, TCN offers seven key programs: Build Up Youth, C.A.R.E. (Caring in Alternative Residential Environments), Environmental Awareness, Family Literacy, Homeless Services, S.A.F.E. (Supporting Abuse Free Environments), and Workforce Development.  For more information on TCN, call 610-705-3301 or visit www.tcnetwork.org.