The opioid crisis has been in the headlines across the United States. Marijuana has also been featured in many headlines as more states are legalizing marijuana for medical and recreational use. In Minnesota, there are more arrests across the state for methamphetamine than there are for opioids.
Approximately 37 percent of arrests in 2017 in Minnesota were drug-related, and about 74 percent of drug charges were for methamphetamine. Methamphetamine is the top reason for drug arrests in about 30 states.
Methamphetamine was in the headlines more about a decade ago until a series of laws were passed to help shut down meth labs. Despite these measures, the number of meth-related arrests is on the rise in Minnesota and other states. About a third of counties in Minnesota reported that more people had entered addiction treatment for meth use than alcohol addiction.
The reason that meth has become much more of a problem across the country may be because street prices are cheaper while the potency of the drug is increasing. Most states are trying to stop the meth problem by focusing on large drug busts. Many drug task force agencies have been working to stop shipments coming to the United States before they can be distributed.
A conviction for drug charges can have serious consequences including the loss of the defendant's career, the loss of their driving privileges, fines and possible time in prison. A criminal defense attorney may be able to help individuals who are facing drug charges mitigate the consequences. For example, a defense attorney may be able to challenge evidence in cases where law enforcement failed to take the appropriate steps to conduct a search. In cases where there is no evidence of police misconduct and the state likely has enough evidence for a conviction, an attorney might be able to help a defendant minimize jail time.