Wisconsin Rapids police area seeing an increase in methamphetamine in the city, Detective Nathan Reblin said.
“We’re seeing it on traffic stops; we’re seeing it at domestics; were seeing it wherever and whenever,” Reblin said.
A few weeks ago, Marshfield officers seized methamphetamine paraphernalia at a shelter, Marshfield Officer Jim Cramm said. An officer found the paraphernalia in a backpack with baby food.
Reblin said he’s talked to members of the Central Wisconsin Drug Task Force about the increasing problem of methamphetamine. Some municipalities are reporting seeing an increasing amount of the drug and others haven’t seen it.
Fortunately, the city of Stevens Point has not seen an increase in methamphetamine, Stevens Point Police Detective Michael Schultz said.
Drugs sometimes tend to run in trends and right now, methamphetamine is the drug that seems to be growing, Reblin said.
“One person tries meth and gets their friends to do it,” Reblin said.
Officials’ biggest concern is the possibility of clandestine labs, Cramm said. Labs have a higher incident of fires, explosions and chemical burns, Cramm said. The chemicals can contaminate houses. Another concern is children getting into the chemicals.
“Children are so innocent; they pick up any bottle they see and could be ingesting toxic chemicals,” Cramm said. “They see a colorful liquid and think it’s juice.”
Marshfield authorities haven’t found any meth labs in the city and are hearing from sources that, at this point, most of the methamphetamine is coming from outside the area, Cramm said.
Although Wisconsin Rapids authorities did recently find what they say is a methamphetamine lab, most of the meth police are finding is coming from outside the area, Reblin said. Officials think the methamphetamine is coming through drug trafficking routes from Mexico.
Although authorities aren’t finding locally produced methamphetamine, there is an inherent risk when there is a drug that people can produce on their own, Reblin said. People can learn to produce it on the Internet, he said.
“Kids will try to make it, and adults will try to make it,” Reblin said. “They either want the addiction or to try and generate that profit.”
While an increase int he amount of methamphetamine is a concern for authorities, heroin still is a bigger issue, Cramm said. People are dieing of overdoses from heroin, and they’re committing other crimes to get the money to pay to support a heroin addiction.
Heroin shuts the body down, while methamphetamine speeds it up, Reblin said. Officials aren’t seeing the deaths coming from methamphetamine use that they see coming from heroin use, but it still is a concern.
“The bottom line is nothing good comes out of (methamphetamine),” Reblin said. “There’s no positives in cooking, distributing and using it.”
A lot of people think they can use meth for pleasure or recreation and not get addicted, Pramm said.
“They find out when they use it how addictive it is,” Cramm said. “They can’t stop and it fuels the addition.”