A 25-year-old Lincoln woman was charged Thursday with possession of methamphetamine with intent to deliver and possession of a controlled substance. 57db26e9da77e_image

A Nebraska State Patrol trooper stopped Tressie Felker for driving 83 mph on Interstate 80 about 2:30 Thursday. Troopers searched the car after they smelled marijuana, according to an affidavit.

They said they found a marijuana joint and a plastic bag with eight oxycontin pills and arrested Felker.

At the jail, Felker changed her clothes and handed officers two Ziploc bags holding a total of 1.4 ounces of meth, according to court documents. Her bond was set at $50,000, and she remained in jail Thursday evening.





A FORMER Penthouse Pet has been sentenced to a minimum six-and-a-half years in jail for helping smuggle the drug ice into Australia concealed in bath products.

A Sydney District Court judge today found Simone Farrow, 41, played a principal role in helping to smuggle methamphetamine into the country over a seven-and-a-half-month ­period before her arrest in October 2009.34919d8ab4a229b3fb3f5d8e4afbb4d5

She left Australia for the US after escaping a parcel bomb addressed to her, and used her time in California to pursue a career as a pop star and model under the name Simone Starr.

Prosecutors claimed she was a drug kingpin who posted top-quality meth to buyers in Australia and used staff from her music and modelling business to run the operation.

But Farrow claims she was duped by her employees, who took control of her bank accounts, email addresses and mobile phones without her knowledge to run the drug network.

They included her assistant Jessica Petit and Xander Rian, who killed himself in a Hollywood apartment after US investigators arranged to interview him before ­Farrow’s arrest in 2009.2416b48291abaf74803afda087e49280

Judge David Arnott said Farrow derived substantial income for her role, which involved communicating with customers, creating invoices for consignments and devising false names and ­addresses. When arrested she had $45,000 in two NAB accounts and $US93,000 in a Citibank account, the court heard.

Farrow, the judge said, used her proceeds from the smuggling racket to fund an extravagant lifestyle.

“Whilst I’m not able to find that she was the principal behind the criminal ­enterprise, I find she played a principal role,” he said.

“She played an essential and important role in a significant (criminal) enterprise using her image as a model for a cover.”

Since her arrest seven years ago, Farrow has skipped bail twice and spent four years behind bars on remand.

She pleaded guilty to importing a marketable quantity of a ­border-controlled drug.

Judge Arnott took into account her sad childhood, which included sexual abuse at the hands of a stepfather, and her mother introducing her to prostitution at 17. Farrow will be eligible for parole in February 2019.





A judge on Thursday sentenced the Redding woman who pleaded guilty to leading law enforcement officers on a high-speed chase in a “Scooby Doo” Mystery Machine van to two years, eight months in prison.

Sharon Kay Turman, 51, asked Superior Court Judge Cara Beatty to place her on probation instead of sending her to prison.r0016507407-952306

“I am not the same person,” Turman said, admitting she was high on methamphetamine at the time of the chase.

But, she vowed, she will lead a sober and law-abiding life from now on and also apologized for the conduct that got her arrested.

“I am really sorry for my actions,” she said. “I am going to stay sober and accountable.”

While Beatty commended her for wanting to turn her life around, she said she could not grant Turman probation due to the nature of her crime.

“It was horrifying,” she said, noting that Turman put many people at risk.

And, she said, Turman needs to continue to battle her methamphetamine addiction.

“Methamphetamine opened the door to your soul and let the devil out,” she said.

Turman, who admitted Thursday that she was an everyday methamphetamine user until her arrest, pleaded guilty in May to felony flight from officers.

She did so under a plea bargain that stipulated she would not serve more than two years, eight months in prison.

Although she later sought to withdraw her plea because she was apparently confused about its terms, she recently dropped that effort.

Police have said Turman was on supervised release for theft and suspected of violating her probation in the deactivation of her ankle monitor when officers spotted her March 6 in her colorfully decorated 1994 Town and Country minivan at California and Shasta streets in downtown Redding.

She reportedly took off in the van when officers tried to pull her over. Turman reportedly later told officers she did not stop out of fear they would hurt her.

Officers said she sped down South Market Street without any concern for motorists and nearly hit four other vehicles before she abandoned the van, which had run out of gas, on Highway 36 off Bowman Road in northwestern Tehama County.

Turman got away, but turned herself in at the Shasta County Jail on March 16.

She must serve 50 percent of her sentence before being eligible for parole.






A Manistee County woman is facing charges after she was accused of running a meth lab.trhwthwrywry

State police and SSCENT drug team detectives began investigating in April when they found a portable meth lab in the parking lot of the Manistee Hotel.

Now, Carrie Whitford is charged with having drugs to make meth and running a meth lab.

She could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted.






EAST ST. LOUIS • A woman who conspired with her husband to coerce a distraught 15-year-old girl from Madison into prostitution at truck stops and trailer parks last summer was sentenced Thursday to 20 years in federal prison.

Chief U.S. District Judge Michael J. Reagan told Robin (Lott) Thompson, 25, that her crime was one of the worst he has ever seen.

“What you and your husband did was strip an individual of the right to feel secure, control and trust what she did with her own body,” Reagan said at a hearing here. “He was one of the enablers in your case but I think there were numerous times when you could have said, ‘Enough is enough,’ and ‘Stop.’”

In addition to 20 years, Robin Thompson was given 10 years of supervised release and fines.

Thompson and her husband, Marcus D. Thompson, 29, of Park Hills, Mo., admitted in May that they used the girl for prostitution in at least three states, advertising sex encounters by posting explicit pictures of her on the website Backpage.com.

The victim reported the couple to authorities in July 2015 from Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center in St. Louis, telling police she believed the four other girls enticed into the operation were 12 to 18 years old. She told authorities that one of the girls died in her arms and that they were beaten and threatened with being fed to alligators in a swamp if they tried to escape.

The teen had been missing since June 9. She was walking down a street in Madison when Marcus Thompson approached in a white pickup with the four other girls inside, court documents said.

She had been contemplating suicide that day by jumping off a bridge after arguing with her father over becoming pregnant, Reagan said Thursday.

Federal investigators subpoenaed Backpage.com and found that the Thompsons’ cellphone was used to place ads in Orlando and Pensacola in Florida, as well as Atlanta, Nashville, Tenn., and Dallas in June and early July 2015.

As part of an agreement with federal prosecutors, Robin Thompson pleaded guilty of conspiracy to commit sex trafficking of a child by force, fraud or coercion. Her husband pleaded guilty in May to the conspiracy charge and child sex trafficking. At his sentencing hearing set for Sept. 29, Marcus Thompson faces 27 to nearly 34 years in prison.

Robin Thompson’s lawyer, Gary Milone, argued for a lighter sentence, saying Robin Thompson had never run afoul of the law before meeting her husband. The lawyer said she “had an uphill climb all her life” and pointed to her lack of criminal record, and her drug-addicted mother, history of child abuse and methamphetamine addiction.

Milone said she dropped out of high school her junior year, and at the time was ranked 232nd of 239 classmates.

Robin Thompson said Thursday in court, “My biggest mistake was not being able to tell people no.” She added, “I admit I was wrong, but I’m not this horrible person everyone makes me out to be.”

She told Reagan she didn’t know the teen was underage until later on. Reagan said he didn’t believe her.

Robin Thompson negotiated prices, arranged meetings at truck stops, booked hotel rooms, provided condoms, kept a ledger of the transactions and threatened to harm the girl if she tried to escape.

The girl told authorities she brought in about $1,000 a day for having sex with men, some of whom took pictures and videos.

Reagan read excerpts of the girl’s “victim impact” letter, in which she described long-term emotional and physical trauma, loneliness and fear of being re-victimized: “It’s hard to wake up every day and remember the people I had sex with … ” she wrote.





PAULDING COUNTY, Ga. – Police have arrested four people in connection with drug trafficking and stealing guns from a sporting goods store.

Randall Casey Thomas, 41, Erick Douglas Thomas, 38, Mariah Lynn Barham, 24, and Emily Catherine Hardin, 22, have been changed with methamphetamine trafficking, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, and multiple firearms charges.srhhgsetsthsf

Police began investigating details about a burglary at Academy Sports in Hiram, Ga. on Aug. 2.
During the burglary, 13 guns were stolen along with other merchandise.  Following an investigation, most of the guns were recovered on August 9.

Detectives with the Hiram Police Department, Deputies and Detectives with the Paulding County Sheriff’s Office, and Agents with the Haralson-Paulding Drug Task Force were able to work together to recover the majority of the stolen guns from the Academy Sports burglary and seize a large quantity of illegal narcotics in the process.

On Aug. 9, detectives executed a search warrant at 488 Roberson Road in Rockmart, Ga., which was the culmination of a 2 month narcotics investigation into that thw4hwrhtwhresidence and its occupants. Approximately 8 pounds of crystal methamphetamine, 4.5 pounds of marijuana, and 36 firearms were located, according to a police report.

Twelve of the firearms that were recovered during the search warrant were stolen from Academy Sports in Hiram, Ga.

Randall Casey Thomas Jr, 41, is still being held in the Paulding County Detention Center on a $15,000 bond and he also has a hold through the State of Georgia Parole Board.

Erick Thomas, 38, is currently being held at the Paulding County Detention Center with no bond.

Mariah Barham was booked into the Paulding County Detention Center on Aug. 10 and was released Sept. 8 on a $2,950 bond.

Emily Hardin was booked into the Paulding County Detention Center on Aug. 10 and was released Sept. 8 on a $4,600 bond.

If you have any information about narcotics use, distribution, or trafficking in Paulding County, please call the Haralson-Paulding Drug Task Force at (770) 6469175. 





CAMBRIDGE, Ohio — The abuse of heroin and other opioid painkillers has claimed a staggering number of lives in Ohio over the last several years, receiving the apt label of “epidemic” from health and safety officials alike.

And while opioid abuse presents many perils to those in its grips, law enforcement agencies say a surge in crystal methamphetamine use is also posing increasing risks to the officers working to remove dangerous drugs from the streets.

The Cambridge Police Department is among law enforcement agencies reporting a drastic increase in the use and availability of “ICE,” the crystal form of meth, and with it an increase in the aggressive and unpredictable behavior that crystal meth often produces. Crystal meth reportedly can induce restlessness, irritability, aggressiveness, paranoia and psychosis, increasing the “fight-or-flight” reaction of its users in stressful situations.

As recently as Thursday, one officer suffered a broken hand and a police canine’s leg was injured in an altercation with a suspect who allegedly consumed “ICE” before breaking into a number of cars on N. 6th Street. The suspect, 23-year-old Joshua Williams, reportedly told police after undergoing medical treatment that he did not remember anything about the struggle. Williams now faces charges of theft, obstructing official business, resisting arrest and possession of a hypodermic syringe, and will likely be subject to felony charges related to the assault of the officer and canine.

Cambridge Police records show that officers have responded to 334 meth-related incidents in 2016, so far, most of which involved the “ICE” form of meth. That’s a marked increase over the 258 incidents reported in all of 2015, nearly all of which concerned the less-potent powdered form of methamphetamine.

The influx of crystal meth into Cambridge and surrounding communities underscores the larger addiction epidemic in our listerning area. The Cambridge Police Department has assisted medical personnel on 90 heroin and opiate overdose calls so far, this year, including seven in the past week. That’s nearly double the 52 opioid-related calls reported in 2015.

Officers from all local agencies urge residents to report any information related to the suspected sale or manufacturing of illicit drugs to the relevant law enforcement agency. In Cambridge, call the Police Department at 740.439.4431.



Crystal meth poses new risks to drug users, law enforcement in Ohio



A Sumner County family is preparing to move out of its home, saying toxins left behind by a previous tenant are making them sick.

They unknowingly moved into a former meth house and say now their toddler is paying the price.

Emily Williams, says she, her fiance and baby experienced many symptoms that experts say short term 68i6ie64ir6rgjfjexposure to meth chemicals can result in — like headaches and dizziness. Over a longer period, it can be deadly.

The only thing: the couple didn’t suspect it until a simple Google search of the rental property address.

When this couple moved to a house in Portland a year ago, they thought they’d found a home.

“A great place, we have horses and it came with pasture, we felt like we got really lucky with the house,” Williams said.

But Williams and her fiance, Nathan Lanius say the homey feeling didn’t last long.

From mold in the bathroom, to their infant, Harper’s health.

“She started having respiratory issues almost immediately after we moved in,” Wlliams said. “The landlord knew every time when I was going to the hospital, she was on my Facebook, we had a good relationship. ‘Praying for your daughter, I hope she gets better.’ Never once was she like, ‘by the way this could be the cause of it.’”

Fox 17 reached out to landlord Ann Rawls.

“There was a meth lab that had been started in it, but it was caught pretty quick. I had the mobile home completely gutted, completely cleaned. I talked to the guy today that did it and he said it was just a mishap that it wasn’t posted, it has been cleaned there’s nothing to it at all,” Rawls said.

But the Tennessee Dangerous Drug Task Force’s website says this house is not approved for human habitation.

As far as Rawls telling her current tenants the house history before they moved in:

“It was five years ago,” Rawls said. “I didn’t think about telling them anything. There’s no traces of anything. Anything they’ve needed I have taken care of it, I don’t understand what they’re trying to pull.”

The couple says it’s moving to Oregon this week, only taking their horses and dogs. They are leaving nearly $10,000 in items for fear of exposure to toxic chemicals.

“To me she put a monthly price tag on my daughter’s health, let alone our health,” Williams said. “I paid $700 to expose my daughter to a meth lab. It’s like she doesn’t have a heart. We just don’t want anyone else living here in this situation.”

Fox 17 confirmed this couple is not behind on the rent.

Click here for the TDEC Registry of Properties under Order of Quarantine.





Methamphetamine use growing in Winnipeg

Posted: 16th September 2016 by Doc in Uncategorized

The city’s youth are fuelling a surge in methamphetamine use because it’s a cheaper way to get a long-lasting high.

In fact, “because of its affordability, addictive nature and accessibility, the methamphetamine user base in Winnipeg has increased significantly over a few short years, allowing traffickers to prosper,” the Winnipeg Police Service said in a statement.

RCMP and Winnipeg Police Service held a news conference Thursday afternoon displaying items seized from Project Distress – The 15 month investigation has 14 people charged with seizures of over six kilos of cocaine, eight kilos of methamphetamine, other drugs, cash and numerous weapons-close-up of methamphetamine seized- See Kevin Rollason story – Dec 11, 2014 (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

Sadly, both police and health officials don’t expect the situation to get better any time soon.

“Because of these factors, we believe and expect this trend will continue,” the WPS statement said.

Shelley Marshall, a clinical nurse specialist with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority’s Street Connections program, said the program’s clients and local youth agencies have been reporting meth use has been on the rise for at least the past two years. Younger drug users, and users of other stimulant street drugs such as crack cocaine, are turning to meth because it’s cheaper, more accessible and can provide a high for up to 12 hours — compared with a 30-minute high for crack cocaine, which costs twice as much.

‘It’s cheap, and the high lasts a long time, so there’s a lot about the properties that resonate with the wants of youth who use the drug’– Shelley Marshall, clinical nurse specialist with the WRHA’s Street Connections “It kind of increases your sense of meaning and purpose and increases your engagement in almost everything you do,” Marshall added. “When you have exclusion from meaningful modes of production in society, like no access to a job, family’s broken up, children apprehended, and you don’t have meaning in your everyday life, meth becomes sort of an instant replacement for a sense of purpose and engagement.”

The impact of meth use has been reflected in Manitoba’s criminal justice system — most recently in a case in which the accused and the victim were both using the highly addictive synthetic street drug.

A 30-year-old crystal meth addict convicted of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl and threatening her with a blowtorch was released from jail Tuesday, bound by strict conditions including a court order not to use illegal drugs.

Nicholas Raymond Serbyniuk was sentenced to 21/2 years in custody followed by 21/2 years of supervised probation. He pleaded guilty on the day his trial was set to begin to sexual assault and assault with a weapon stemming from his drug-fuelled encounter with the underage girl in June 2014. He was freed after sentencing being given 11/2 days’ credit for each day he had served in custody since his arrest.

In asking Justice Joan McKelvey to impose a probation condition barring Serbyniuk from using drugs, the Crown said Serbyniuk needed to seriously address his abuse of crystal methamphetamine — a form of meth he started using when he was only 13.

“We see the results of this particularly pernicious drug all too often in our courts,” Crown attorney Mitchell Lavitt said, noting users often make bad decisions that land them in front of a judge.

“In this case, it led (Serbyniuk) to a significant period of incarceration, which would have been avoided if he’d simply been sober on the night in question.”

Then 28, Serbyniuk met the 14-year-old girl outdoors during the Winnipeg Pride parade. He didn’t know she was under 18, he told court, but took her back to his place, where they drank beer, got high on crystal meth and had sex — to which she was too young to legally consent. The next day, “after the high had worn off,” Serbyniuk became enraged thinking the girl had stolen some of the drugs. He lit a propane blowtorch and threatened her, “saying he was going to burn her eyes out,” Lavitt told court. He wouldn’t let her leave and took her eyeglasses and iPad, but eventually she escaped and called police. Charges against him for forcible confinement, uttering threats, theft and sexual interference were stayed.

Lavitt told court he had previously met with the victim, whom he described as a bright young woman from a troubled background. She was living in foster care and appeared to be “on the mend” prior to Serbyniuk’s sentencing, but she couldn’t be called in to give a victim-impact statement because “she has gone essentially AWOL” and is believed to have recently started using crystal meth again.

“It’s not clear whether this particular thing set her off, or something else,” Lavitt told court.

Serbyniuk prays daily for the girl and her family, he told court, saying he’s sorry for what he put her through.

“I really wish there was a way I could apologize to the victim and her family,” he said, telling court he’s done some “soul-searching” while incarcerated and doesn’t want to get himself into trouble again. “To know what I did, it’s just really hard to accept,” he added.

“I just want to say sorry, and I hope she’s OK.”

Serbyniuk “has a new outlook on life. He wants to live a clean life,” defence lawyer Brett Gladstone said, noting he has applied for treatment at a rehab centre.

But he told court his client is still struggling with drug addiction and expressed concern a court order to abstain from drugs might set him up to fail or prevent him from getting help if he slips up. Justice McKelvey ultimately imposed the order, with an exception that allows Serbyniuk to drink alcohol only in his own home. She said the condition was necessary as an “incentive” for him to get sober, as well as for the protection of the community.

Police expect the relative popularity of meth in Winnipeg to continue as long as the price stays low and it remains easily accessible. The man-made drug is primarily smuggled into Manitoba from British Columbia and sold in Winnipeg at a consistently “very high quality and purity,” the Winnipeg Police Service’s organized crime unit said in an emailed statement. Drug busts over the past two months have led city police to seize more than eight kilograms of meth with a street value of about $800,000, “only a fraction of the methamphetamine being distributed in Winnipeg,” WPS said.

But encounters with the criminal justice system can often lead to more problems for young meth users, Marshall said.

“The situation of youth today is not an easy road, and crystal meth offers something from the perspective of youth, they get this sense of engagement in everything they’re doing when they use it. So it’s hard to dispel that benefit,” she said.

“If the community is concerned about meth, we should really be concerned about youth and what they actually have available to them — that’s where we need to build. Rather than pulling people out of the river, we should fix the bridge so they stop falling off in the first place.”






WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Ryan Zinke addressed Congress on the growing use of Methamphetamine and how it’s effecting children and Native Americans here in Montana.

The Department of Family Services reported that 851 children were in foster care in 2010, 6 years later there 8857784_gare over 1,600. In Cascade County 59% of these cases have a tie to Meth. And in Yellowstone county, 14% of adults say that Meth is their drug of choice.

“Meth affects all of our communities in many ways. In Montana, the criminal justice and foster care systems are being pushed to their limits.

The Missoula county attorney has 62 Meth cases so far this year – at this time in 2007 there were zero.” said Congressman Zinke

Zinke voted for bi-partisan legislation to combat opioid use.. This legislation also takes aim at prescription drugs, which is considered to be a gateway drug to meth.






MARION – While heroin, pills and cocaine are the primary drugs afflicting Marion County, local officials are continuing aggressive efforts to ensure methamphetamine does not gain a foothold.

On Tuesday morning, the MARMET Drug Task Force served a search warrant in Morral, arresting Larry 636095351028022476-adkins-methBorders Jr. and shutting down what they said was a meth manufacturing operation. Detectives seized one gram of powder meth and four grams of liquid meth at Borders’ residence, according to a news release.

Marion County Common Pleas Court records and information from the MARMET Drug Task Force shows this year has had the highest number of arrests that led to prosecution for meth production offenses since 2010. Borders’ arrest occurred during the fifth meth-related search warrant served by MARMET detectives in 2016.

Often, one meth production operation will have multiple participants who are charged together in the initial set of indictments. This year, there have four sets of indictments related to meth production, and that does not include Borders, 41, 104 West St., who has been charged in Marion Municipal Court.

“We’re still relatively low in numbers for methamphetamines, but there have been more this year,” said Marion County Prosecutor Brent Yager. “… I think part of it is intelligent police work, that we find the labs and put them down fairly quickly.”

In 2014, one person was indicted and convicted without any co-defendants, while 2013 saw three sets of indictments returned by the grand jury. In total, there have been 20 people indicted on meth production-related felony charges in Marion County since 2010. Court records indicated none of them had prior meth-related felony convictions.636095373312596172-dsc01780-brown-meth

Often, these cases lead to an individual who led the operation receiving a mandatory prison sentence while others who provided supplies receive lower sentences or probation. Yager said he thinks the operations primarily cook meth for their own use or for a few others, not widespread distribution.

In the most recent case that concluded on Tuesday, Elizabeth Nelson and Foy Potts were making meth while Elisha Nelson, Elizabeth’s brother, bought chemicals and left them for the other two to pick up, according to Yager and Assistant Prosecutor Denise Martin.

Elisa was sentenced to two years of probation on Tuesday, while Elizabeth had received a mandatory three-year term and Potts received a mandatory four years on Monday.

Officials said they don’t want to have to battle another drug on top of the current ones, and they especially don’t want it to be meth. The greatest danger posed by meth is when it is manufactured, but it can also provoke violent reactions from users.

“Normally (on a drug raid) we’ll knock and if we don’t get an answer we’ll kick the door in, rush to try to arrest everybody,” police Chief Bill Collins said in January, after the year’s first meth-related raid. “In this case you have to be careful that you’re not rushing in to a very volatile environment as far as the chemicals.”

In addition to law enforcement officers, firefighters are often placed on standby, with engines and ambulances staged nearby. State officials have also taken part to secure and dispose of hazardous material generated in the process, and all involved now wear air packs.

In 2013, according to police records, three local officers had to be treated for exposure to chemicals that occurred during searches of a meth lab.




Last year Ana Hernandez, a San Diego teenager, was found shot and beaten to death in off Maket Street in Grant Hill, she had been wrapped in a blanket, and dropped in front of her mother’s house. The case bore similarities to organized crime killings in Tijuana, known as encojibado’s, wrapped. Ana’s killers, were local gang affiliates, who killed her to possibly cover up her rape, and that she may have been being sex trafficked by the men, who weren’t much older then Ana.

In a grim parallel to that case, Destiny Memory Hernandez, 18, of San Diego, a Mar Vista High Student, who lived in Imperial Beach, was found on the ‘Fast Track’ area of Tijuana, in a baseball field, earlier in the month, shot 7 times, in the head, thorax, and abdomen, no signs of sexual assault.timthumbrrr

She had been partying in Revolucion, at a bar in Zona Rio with friends, and WhatsApp messages between her, and a girlfriend, state she was headed home with some men she met in a club, to El Florido.  The messages state the men were handsome, and include the slang, ‘heavy’,   Her friend advised her to be careful.  She never came home, and her family came to Tijuana to investigate, with fliers, and social media outreach.
Her brother, Francisco says he heard from her up until last Thursday morning, and then contact was broken.  Her body was identified on September 13, and assumedly found in the days before.  There are some time frame issues, that aren’t clear to me, but will try to clarify.  It’s not known whether she had ties to local gangs, or traffickers in Tijuana.
I say they not to slander a victim, but because that is the way these killings usually turn out.  In no way does that mean she wasn’t an innocent, or deserving of death, whether it’s true or not.  That doesn’t mean she isn’t a victim, or she is at fault for her death.  It’s the way of Mexico, sometimes, and the United States to blame victims, esp. female, which is appalling, and I will never condone.
Local San Diego gang members, esp, in Imperial Beach party in Tijuana, and have family there. It’s possible there is involvement from San Diego residents in her killing, as people know killings are generally not solved in Tijuana.  In March 2009 three US citizens in their late teens and early 20’s from Chula Vista were found after a night partying in Tijuana, tortured, bound and stuffed in a van. Their killers, or the reasons for their death were never revealed.
In 2008, three women from Mexicali were partying with members of CAF (at the time) under Teodoro Garcia Simental, El Negro, and two of his friends met up with the women in a Tijuana nightclub, and after a dispute, drove them to a safehouse in the city.  The women were promised a ride home, and a last minute change of mind from El Negro, they were brought to a home, strangled, and dissolved in lye, common in Tijuana in those years.
Sources: NBC San Diego, AFN Tijuana
Note: If you are in San Diego, or are able to donate online, please do. The family is asking for support for the funeral.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – The mother of Victoria Martens, the 10-year-old girl who was brutally killed last month in New Mexico, had allegedly arranged for other men to sexually assault her daughter in the past, according to search warrants obtained by an Albuquerque television station.michelle-martens

Michelle Martens told police she made arrangements with at least two men to have sex with Victoria, and “possibly the other minor child who resides at the residence,” KOAT reported Wednesday, citing the warrant. Martens also had an 8-year-old son.

She allegedly contacted some of the men through Plenty of Fish, the same online dating website where she met her boyfriend, Fabian Gonzales, according to the station. The pair had been dating for about a month before the killing.

Martens told investigators she allowed another man she met online and one she met at work to rape her daughter, according to the warrant. She said she could tell if a man was interested in having sex with children through “signs” and “things” they did, KOAT reported.crime3

Victoria Martens, a fourth-grader, was killed last month, one day after she turned 10. Her mother, along with Gonzales and his cousin, Jessica Kelley, have all been charged in the case.

Martens told police her daughter was given methamphetamine “to calm her down” and that Gonzales had sex with the little girl before Victoria was strangled and stabbed in front of her, according to a criminal complaint obtained by CNN.

Kelley “held her hand over” Victoria’s mouth as Gonzales “committed the sexual act” while Martens watched, the complaint said. According to the document,

“Michelle stated she watched this … happen for sexual gratification.”

She allegedly continued to watch and did nothing as her daughter was killed, according to KOAT.

Martens told police it was Gonzales who choked her daughter to death; he denied any involvement in the killing, telling police it was Kelley who stabbed and dismembered Victoria, CNN reported, citing the complaint.

Gonzales told police he had sex with the little girl “shortly after the child was deceased,” according to a separate search warrant obtained by KOAT.

Police discovered Victoria’s body partially wrapped in a burning blanket, inside a bath tub, according to authorities.

Martens has been charged with kidnapping and child abuse resulting in death. Gonzales faces the same charges as well as child rape.

Kelley — who was released from prison four days prior to the homicide — was charged with kidnapping, child abuse resulting in death and child rape.

During Kelley’s court appearance, Judge Chris Schultz said “the crimes … display a depth of depravity that is unfathomable to me.”

Albuquerque police have called the crime “horrific.”

“It’s one of the worst things I’ve read in my entire life,” a spokesman for the department said hours after Victoria was found dead.


Mother of New Mexico girl who was raped and killed had sought men to sexually assault daughter, report says


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The mother of a 10-year-old girl found dead and dismembered in her New Mexico home told police that she sought men online to sexually assault her daughter.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that Michelle Martens told police she had set up encounters with at least three men. The child’s brutal death sparked vigils and outcry across New Mexico.

According to warrants obtained by the Journal, Martens told investigators she didn’t do it for the money. Martens said she set up the sexual assaults because she enjoyed watching.

Police found Victoria Martens’ dismembered body last month inside the Albuquerque apartment she shared with her mother.

Police say the girl was injected with methamphetamine, sexually assaulted, strangled and stabbed before being dismembered.

Michelle Martens, the mother’s boyfriend, and the boyfriend’s cousin face charges.

Mark Earnest, Martens’ attorney, did not immediately return a phone message from The Associated Press.





The mother of a 10-year-old girl found dead actively searched for men to rape her daughter, police in Albuquerque Police have revealed.

Michelle Martens, the girl’s 35-year-old mother, told investigators that she sought out men online dating websites and at her place of employment, the Albuquerque Journal reports.

Police said that she willingly admit that she didn’t do it for money, she did it because she enjoyed watching.

“Michelle said ‘yeah’ when asked if she would agree with them over the internet or over the phone that they would come over and have sex with her children,” one investigator outlined in court documents.

One man she met online, Fabian Gonzales, 31, allegedly raped, killed and dismembered the young girl with the help of his cousin. The mother also admitted to giving her daughter methamphetamine to calm her down before Mr Gonzales raped and choked to death. However, Mr Gonzales denies the accusation.

Victoria Martens’ dismembered remains were found in her family’s apartment in Albuquerque by New Mexico police officers.

It is reported she had been injected with methamphetamine, sexually assaulted, strangled and stabbed before she was dismembered.

Albuquerque Police Chief Gorden Eden Jr. said the murder was the “most gruesome act of evil I have ever seen“.

Police said all three suspects in the case are being held in jail on a $1 million bond.




10-year-old New Mexico girl’s relatives mystified over mother’s role in brutal Methamphetamine murder


Her Mother, Michelle Martens, 35, her mother’s boyfriend, Fabian Gonzales, 31, and his cousin, Jessica Kelley, 31, drugged 10-year-old Victoria Martens with Methamphetamine and sexually assaulted her before murdering her in Albuquerque


PITTSBURG COUNTY, Okla. – A mad meth buyer gave police a bizarre tip in southeast Oklahoma.

Split down the middle by Highway 69, Savanna is a haven for truck drivers. But the local Knights Inn has been a haven for crime for years.yhrzshszrtheheha

“Probably three calls a week down there, sometimes three calls a day,” said David Spears, Chief of Police in Savanna. “This thing has just kind of festered into a problem.”

Chief Spears has been on the force since its inception and says he’s watched hotel management go from bad to worse, most recently under 43-year-old Shannon Folsom.

“When this lady was hired, I told management I didn’t think she was part of the solution,” said Spears.

Now Folsom is part of the past, thanks to an angry tenant and an idle threat.

According to court records, it all started on Saturday.

A woman claimed she tried to buy methamphetamine from Shannon for $100.

While the payment was made, the meth reportedly never arrived.

The woman claimed Shannon and her boyfriend, Jeremy Owens, taunted her, suggesting that she ‘could always call the cops and tell them her dope money was stolen.’

So she did.

Pittsburg County Dispatch soon connected her with the county’s drug task force.

“The task force picked up information that they were selling drugs,” said Spears. “They got a warrant, and they come down with our officer and served that warrant.”

Authorities reportedly found a number of illegal items inside the room, all in the presence of a two-year-old child.

Owens and Folsom were swiftly arrested, and the Knights Inn is now under new management.

“They got a new lady down there, she’s taking over and we’ll see what happens,” said Spears.

The woman who originally called dispatch could be facing charges as well.

The case remains under investigation by the district attorney’s office.



Mad meth user reports her alleged dealer to the police


BEDFORD – Police have found a number of meth lab dump sites in Bedford County. Most recently, State Police found one Monday on the 700 block of Pitt Street.

thsahthsahghadhgsdEmergency Management director David Cubbison has some cautions for Bedford County residents who may come across similar sites.

“Generally what people need to look for are confined-space containers like 2-liter bottles, things discarded on the side of the road or deep into the woods. Sometimes they’re nothing more than people getting rid of their trash, which is unfortunate, but other times they can be indeed the remnants of a meth lab,” he said.

He said to be especially careful if there is anything coming out of the containers.

“Watch if there’s any vapors, if there’s any intense smells or if there’s even bubbling going on. Do not touch. Step back, make a phone call and be very, very specific in what you see and we’ll take it from there at 911,” Cubbison said.

If it is a meth-related site, it may emit harmful chemicals. Cubbison said it is essential to let 911 operators know if you think you have been exposed to a meth lab site.

“The secondary problem with this is contamination, not only to the person that possibly has become involved in this process but also to the rescue people, to EMS personnel and then eventually to an emergency department,” he said.

He said the safest things to do are to step away and call 911 to report the finding.






Lagos – The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) says it has arrested a man with parcels of methamphetamine (an addictive stimulant) valued at N31 million at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos.

In a statement on Wednesday, the agency said the suspect was arrested during outward screening of passengers on a South African Airline flight to Johannesburg.

 “The parcels of drug tested positive as methamphetamine and weighed 3.435 kg with a street value of N31 million.

“The drug was detected during a routine check on a passenger on South African Airline flight to South Africa.

“Two bags belonging to a man (names withheld) a 45-year-old, were found to contain parcels of methamphetamine.

“Inside the bags were food items, ingredients and clothes, but underneath were a thin parcel of narcotics carefully concealed.

“He was immediately arrested; investigation is ongoing,’’ the agency said.

NDLEA said the suspect, who resides in South Africa, claimed that the bags were given to him by a friend.

Meanwhile, the NDLEA Chairman, Mr Muhammad Abdallah, has warned members of the public to beware of new tricks employed by drug trafficking cartels.

“Drug traffickers recruit mules by enticing them with money.

“They are very clever in concealing drugs, the agency now detects drugs in bags, electronics, foodstuff and clothes among others.

“We strongly advise that all passengers should endeavor to pack their bags themselves and avoid taking bags for others.

“Ignorance is no excuse in drug trafficking. The suspect will be charged with unlawful exportation of narcotics,’’ Abdallah said.




NDLEA nabs man with methamphetamine valued at N31m at MMIA


Posted by DD from Yahoo News Borderland Beat Archives  and ANG

Clara Elena Laborin, 52, wife of of Hector Beltran Leyva, (alias “H”) was detained on Monday in Hermosillo, northwestern Sonora state, along with another cartel operator, Alan Contreras, according to the federal police.
Borderland Beat reported in November of 2015 that  Laborin, nicknamed “La Senora”,la_senora  assumed leadership of the Beltran Leyva cartel after the arrest of her husband, the alleged drug trafficker “H”  in 2014.  
Like many of the women who have gained power and prominence in the cartels, Clara Elena Laborin had been a contestant in a beauty contest where  she was crowned Miss Sonora/
She has a home and members of her extended family live in Hermosillo.  Her  arrest on Monday was not the first time she had been deprived of her liberty in the city.  In April of 2010 she was abducted in front of her home in the community of La Alameda, not far from the headquarters of the Sonora State Preventive Police. by operatives working for Nacho Coronel..    
The kidnapping had been brought about by bad feelings between the BLO organization and Nacho Colonel after a dispute between the 2 over a joint enterprise they had been engaged went sour and Nacho wound up controlling  the profitable enterprise.  After the splt Arturo Beltran “El Barbas”, head of the Beltran Leyva clan ordered the execution of Nacho Coronel.  
In early April of 2010 suspected gunmen allied with the Beltrán Leyva killed Nacho’s son , Alejandro Coronel, age 16.  Assassins in the service of Colonel counterattacked. In Nayarit they killed 10 people and burned their bodies. Weeks later in Sonora they wifeh02kidnapped Clara Elena Laborín Archuleta. 
Three days later on April 26, 2010, she was found on the street with her hands and feet bound and gauze tape wrapped around her head down to her nose.  She was not injured or hurt.  A banner was left by her body as a warning to “H” which said;
 “We are going to teach you how to be a man and to respect family, murderer of children. Here is your wife, which you refused to answer for. I hand her back to you healthy and safe so you can see and learn that for us family is sacred. We do not kill women or children, we are only going after `El Hache´ y `El Dos Mil,´ as well as several police officers working for Hector Beltran Leyva and Francisco Hernandez Garcia.” 
This time her detention by the Federal Police may not be as brief as it was when Nacho had her kidnapped.
As reported in Yahoo  News, the Federal Police  Laborin is “identified as the head of lasenoraoperations of a criminal cell with a presence in Sonora state.”  She and Contreras “are considered among the main generators of violence in Acapulco,” 
In 2009, the US Treasury Department sanctioned Laborin and 21 other individuals for their ties to the Beltran Leyva organization, freezing any assets they may have in the United States.
Yahoo quoted  Mike Vigil, a former chief of international operations at the US Drug Enforcement Administration,  
“We’re starting to see more and more women climbing through the ranks of many of these cartels,”
“There’s one key factor that distinguishes them from other female traffickers: …they’re extraordinarily ruthless and highly intelligent,” Vigil told AFP.
“They have to be extremely ruthless otherwise the men won’t pay attention to them, and they have to be highly intelligence because they engage in the more sophisticated aspects that the cartel does such as money laundering and logistics, the corruption of public officials.”
“The Web site ANG reported that 2 mg of cocaine and illegal firearms were confiscated at the scene of the arrest.  It also reported that La Senora is not part of the 122 priority objectives of the Federal Government; however, she is included among the 50 priority objectives of the new Reconsideration of the  Strategy Attention of Guerrero. Her capture is the 22nd of the 50 priority players on the list.
“She is considered one of the main generators of violence in Acapulco, from funding her organization and  related cells disputing control of the port with the Independent Cartel of Acapulco (CIDA).

MANCHESTER TOWNSHIP — Police arrested three people on various drug manufacturing, possession and distribution charges and brought a van they identified as a “rolling meth lab” to a halt Monday.

Demetrius Kiprakis, 30, of Goose Creek, South Carolina; Bryan Sahlin, 29, of Manchester Township and Roseanna Fox, 57, of Toms River were all arrested ater a suspicious vehicle was reported on the 2000 block of Larchmont Street at 3:38 p.m. Saturday, police said.



Manchester police officers responded to the Pine Lake section of the township, where the vehicle was eventually located on Middlesex Street. Through further investigation, police learned that the vehicle had license plates that had been reported stolen in Berkeley County, South Carolina, police said.

When police searched the van, they discovered items that were consistent with the manufacturing of crystal methamphetamine.

How to get help with addiction in NJ

“Due to the potential volatility of some of the components involved in the manufacturing process of crystal meth, the items of concern were removed from the vehicle and placed a safe distance away,” police said.

In addition, police requested the assistance of the New Jersey State Police Hazardous Materials Response Unit and well as the local hazmat team and county arson unit, who worked together to identify the items in the van and make sure the scene was safe.

Police shut down a portion of Middlesex Street for about five hours as a precaution during the investigation. They also temporarily evacuated a nearby residence and seized the van and its contents, authorities said.

Kiprakis, who police said was found to be the driver of the vehicle, was charged with several offenses including: first-degree manufacturing of methamphetamine, possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession of a controlled dangerous substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of stolen property and possession of a hypodermic syringe. Kiprakis was transported to Ocean County Jail on $410,000 bail, police said.

Sahlin, an occupant of the van, was charged with first-degree manufacturing of methamphetamine, possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession of a controlled dangerous substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a hypodermic syringe. He was also transported to Ocean County Jail on $410,000 bail.

Fox, who was also an occupant of the van, faces charges that include possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession of a controlled dangerous substance, distribution and manufacturing of drug paraphernalia, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a syringe. She was transported to Ocean County Jail on $85,000 bail.





GULFPORT, Miss. – A south Mississippi man previously convicted on a state methamphetamine charge has now pleaded guilty to a federal charge of meth distribution.

43-year-old Michael Allen Webb of Stone County pleaded guilty Monday to possession with intent to distribute. He will be sentenced Dec. 19 and faces up to 20 years in prison.

Webb is being held without bond. Court records show he was on parole for a meth-possession conviction when he was found with meth May 14 after checking out of a Gulfport hotel.

A Drug Enforcement Administration Task Force agent wrote in a sworn statement that when asked his intentions for the meth, Webb said, “I’m going to say it is for personal consumption. I like to freak the ladies with it.”


DECATUR – Police broke up an alleged methamphetamine lab housed in a Decatur apartment Sunday night and arrested five people, and they bagged a burglar the next day.

Before they were finished cleaning up early Monday morning, police arrested another man they say had grabbed the opportunity to sneak into the apartment and empty its fridge and freezer of food.

He came out of the kitchen after 1 a.m weighed down with bags of meat, eggs and groceries valued at more than $100 and walked straight into the arms of waiting police officers, police said.

Police had first been alerted to the meth lab in the 1200 block of East Cantrell Street after a citizen tip about finding bags of garbage near the apartment stuffed with empty blister packs of cold medicine associated with drug production. The informant also told police there had been a “significant amount of traffic” through the apartment.

Officers swooped on the address at 11:45 p.m. Sunday and arrested Heather L. Lee, 26, who is on probation and has previous convictions for meth delivery and possession, according to sworn statements.

Lee was booked on a charge of aggravated meth manufacturing along with Natasha J. Lee, 29; Matthew A. Ginger, 27; Nathanial L. Brackett, 20; and Hannah M. Rice, 19.

The alleged opportunistic thief is Martin R. Allbritton Jr., 50, who was charged with one count of residential burglary.

Police said they seized meth and meth-making materials in the apartment, and found more meth-related trash and a bottle containing 78 grams of a liquid that tested positive for the drug in a car outside. This vehicle belongs to Nathanial Brackett.

The Decatur officers then called in a specialist chemical team from the Illinois State Police to clean up the apartment and car outside.

It was as officers were returning to the apartment, where the front door was left open, that they say they met Allbritton emerging from the kitchen. He told police he “thought the occupants moved out” and had come in to see if any food was left behind.

Police said Allbritton has four previous theft arrests and one conviction.





Six years ago, Wes Hannon, 30, went to his doctor’s office with general complaints. Then a clerk at a Family Dollar store in Harrisburg, Pa., he told his doctor he was shy, unmotivated and found it hard to focus.

He walked out of the office with a prescription for Adderall, an amphetamine typically prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

“It was instant,” he said of the drug’s effects. “It fixed everything. … All these problems that had ailed me my whole life were gone. I was focused, energetic, confident.

“It was easy.”

But each dose lasted only four hours.

And as Hannon’s tolerance grew, the effect of the drug lessened.

Hannon quickly ramped up the number of pills he was taking, then how often he was taking them. He soon was on so much Adderall that his doctor drew criticism from others in his practice. So, Hannon said, his doctor sent him to a psychiatrist for a formal diagnosis.

Hannon met with a psychiatrist every day for a week and mentioned problems that he now says are unremarkable —  that he had a hard time focusing on his work, that he jumped from idea to idea in his head. They weren’t lies, but he knew what to say to get his diagnosis.

The stimulants made him feel good, and he wanted to keep feeling good.

In one study, published in 2012, some 22% of adults tested for ADHD were found to have exaggerated their symptoms.

At the end of the week, the psychiatrist said Hannon had adult ADHD.

“For some reason or another, they’re way too eager to give this stuff,” Hannon said. “They give it out like Skittles.”

Hannon is one of as many as 10 million adults who are said to have adult ADHD, though independent experts question that number and the use of dangerous, heavily marketed drugs to treat the condition.

Just as prescription painkillers have a profile similar to heroin, which led to the heroin boom, many ADHD drugs share qualities with street drugs such as methamphetamine and cocaine. One ADHD drug, Desoxyn, is chemically identical to methamphetamine.

There has been little research into whether ADHD drugs lead to illicit drug use. But users say it’s a well-known evolution.

Armed with the diagnosis, Hannon soon was taking 120 milligrams of Adderall a day, four times his original prescription. Still, the pills didn’t last long enough. When the bottle ran empty, he’d buy pills from friends — for $5 or $10 each.

Then he turned to something stronger, cheaper and easier to find: street methamphetamine.

Two weeks of Adderall cost about $100; a similar supply of meth could be had for $60. And meth lasted 12 hours to Adderall’s four.

Hannon is not sure he ever had adult ADHD. In any case, he concedes, by this point the drugs weren’t fixing his problems.

They had become his biggest problem.

“You kind of have no choice if you want to keep the train rolling,” he said.

A familiar path

Experts say Hannon’s transition from prescription drug to cheaper street drug followed a common path — one similar to that of opioid-to-heroin abuse.

“One starts out with a pharmaceutical and then, as the need for more drugs to get high develops, the costs and drug availability become prohibitive and the user switches to cheap and readily accessible street drugs,” said Lewis Nelson, a toxicologist at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School.

Hannon supplemented his legal prescription with illegal meth for just a few months. Soon he switched to meth exclusively.

For a year and a half, Hannon was on meth almost all the time.

He stayed up for days at a time. He slept only six days out of the month. He would rarely eat or drink.

“When I felt like an elephant was standing on my chest, then I ate something,” he said.

Toward the end, he carried just 140 pounds on his 6-foot-7 frame.

New definitions or lowered thresholds mean millions more people – overnight – fit the criteria of having treatable disorders. Critics say the changes mean more patients may end up being treated with drugs that may be risky. Here is a closer look at eight psychiatric and medical conditions.

His girlfriend left him. He got in a car accident, punctured a lung and spent a week in the hospital. He got arrested for marijuana possession. Acquaintances overdosed and died.

One day, he looked around and realized his family had written him off and —  aside from the people he got high with — he had no friends.

So he stopped.

For about a month, he had hallucinations and was tired all the time. He was depressed and paranoid. He suffered panic attacks.

He had three relapses, the last in July 2014. He said he hasn’t used since.

These days, Hannon can be found on the website Reddit, where he stays in touch with others on a similar path. When he has bad days, he asks to contact other users who are in recovery, just to talk through it. Other days, he’s the one offering advice.

“Hang in there,” he wrote to one user who was having trouble quitting. “Keep reminding yourself why you stopped.”

At one time, Hannon said, he vowed to himself that he would never try methamphetamine. Looking back, he knows why he did.

“I don’t think I would have tried meth if Adderall wouldn’t have opened up the … gates,” he said.







Abuse of ADHD drugs following path of opioids

Posted: 14th September 2016 by Doc in Uncategorized
Public health officials have focused on the national plague of narcotic painkillers. But another scourge is looming largely unnoticed: The drugs used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in adults.

Since 2013, there have been more than 19,000 reports of complications from ADHD drugs, most of which are stimulants like Adderall, made to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, according to a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel/MedPage Today analysis.

Of those, adults were far more likely than children to suffer severe complications, such as death and hospitalization.

Meanwhile, among those 26 and older, recreational use of Adderall, an amphetamine, rose fourfold, from 345,000 people in 2006 to 1.4 million in 2014, according to the latest available federal data.

In emergency departments around the country, the number of cases involving two common ADHD drugs nearly quadrupled over seven years.

And at morgues in Florida, a bellwether state for drug abuse problems, overdose deaths involving amphetamines increased more than 450% between 2008 and 2014.

Taken together, the data shows the drugs —  which have been heavily promoted by the pharmaceutical industry —  have left a trail of misuse, addiction and death, a Journal Sentinel/MedPage Today investigation found.

Twenty years ago, adult ADHD was a seldom-diagnosed disorder.

But it has become a part of mainstream medicine over the past decade, fueled by relaxed standards for diagnosis and a push from drug companies, one of which helped fund a study that claimed 1 in 23 adult Americans are affected by it. That represents about 10 million people.

“The streets are awash with Adderall,” said Nicolas Rasmussen, a medical historian who has studied the history of amphetamines in the United States. Amphetamines are grossly overused.”

Independent experts question whether adult ADHD truly is a widespread condition that needs treatment with dangerous drugs.

It is among a series of conditions identified by the Journal Sentinel and MedPage Today in which diagnostic definitions were expanded —  often by experts or organizations with financial ties to drug companies —  to create a larger market for treatment with expensive, often dangerous drugs.

In the case of adult ADHD, the definition was relaxed in 2013 by the American Psychiatric Association. Under the new definition, adults need to have five of a possible nine symptoms from either of two categories, down from six of a possible nine, and the symptoms must have been present before age 12, instead of the previous age 7.

Of the experts on the panel that approved the changes, 78% had financial ties to drug companies, according to a 2012 analysis by the journal PLoS Medicine.

In a Journal Sentinel/MedPage Today investigation in May, an association spokesman said financial conflicts of interest among panel members were limited to $10,000 a year in income, such as working as industry speakers and consultants.

He also defended inclusion of the adult ADHD definition in the organization’s diagnostic manual, saying the condition is a real one that affects many adults.

The symptoms of the condition typically involve an inability to focus on tasks, fidgeting or interrupting others. Experts note the symptoms are vague, can be caused by other conditions and are easy to fake.

One study, in 2010, found that 22% of adults tested for ADHD had exaggerated their symptoms.

For years, the legitimacy of adult ADHD was based on the belief that for some it was a condition that started in childhood and persisted into adulthood.

But that belief was undermined last year, when researchers published the results of a long-term study that began in the early 1970s and followed more than 1,000 New Zealand children until age 38. The study found little overlap between those who had ADHD as children and those who were diagnosed as adults.

While none of its symptoms are life-threatening, the drugs approved by the FDA to treat adult ADHD can raise heart rates and blood pressure, and have been linked to sudden death. They also carry a high potential for abuse and dependence.


The long-term risks and benefits in adults are not known. Drugs often are tested for a year or more, but rigorous clinical trials of the ADHD drugs on adults have not lasted more than a few weeks or months.

Among the reports of complications to the FDA:

  • A 41-year-old woman was hospitalized with kidney failure after abusing methylphenidate, better known as the stimulant in the ADHD drug Ritalin.
  • A man on heart medications also was on two ADHD drugs, which can increase heart problems. He had a fatal heart attack at age 41.
  • A 33-year-old man on the ADHD drug Vyvanse was hospitalized after suffering a panic attack, an increased heart rate, chest pain and dizziness.

The Journal Sentinel/MedPage Today analysis of the FDA data focused on reports of problems submitted by health care professionals and drug companies. Companies are required to report any cases they learn about. It did not include cases submitted directly by patients.

As such, the number of complications is likely much higher than the 19,000 found.

University of Wisconsin cardiologist James Stein said he has treated adult patients who developed serious problems after being misdiagnosed with ADHD and put on prescription stimulants.

One patient developed extremely high blood pressure; another developed an irregular heartbeat.

Stein, a professor of cardiovascular medicine at the UW School of Medicine and Public Health, worries about the increase in prescriptions and marketing of the drugs to patients.

“I don’t think these are the kinds of drugs that should be thrown around willy-nilly.”

More prescriptions, more problems

Between 2010 and 2015, sales of ADHD drugs jumped from $7.9 billion to $11.2 billion, according to data from IMS Health, a drug market research firm. Prescriptions increased from 67 million to 87 million.

The surge came on the heels of a pattern starting in 2008 in which prescriptions to adults jumped 53% over four years, according to Express Scripts, a national prescription benefit plan provider.


Those numbers only tell part of the story:

  • In the last decade, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration authorized increased production of legal methylphenidate, the stimulant in Ritalin, from 38 tons to nearly 106. That’s enough to provide every man, woman and child in America with 30 tablets of Ritalin —  a month’s supply.
  • Use of amphetamines is so common that in Tacoma, Wash., its presence in wastewater samples collected near college dormitories was eight times higher during final exams week than the first week of classes, according to a 2013 study.
  • On the user-driven site Reddit, nearly 5,000 readers share tips on abusing Adderall, ranging from how to convince doctors to write a prescription to dealing with skin outbreaks from snorting the drugs.

Wes Hannon, 30, of Harrisburg, Pa., is a former addict who got his first prescription for Adderall at age 24. He has tried to help others on the site overcome their own stimulant addictions.

Hannon said it’s easy to persuade doctors you have the disorder.

“I have no doubt that ADHD does exist, but not nearly the amount of people that they say have ADHD,” he said in an interview. “They’re way too liberal with their diagnosis, and they’re willing to prescribe this to anyone who exhibits symptoms.”

In Hannon’s case, he quickly developed a tolerance and soon switched to an illicit stimulant, methamphetamine. The street drug was cheaper, stronger and easier to get than Adderall.

After several unsuccessful attempts to stop using it, he successfully quit in 2014.

Rasmussen, the medical historian who has studied amphetamines, said the drugs are prone to abuse because “people often feel it makes their lives better. It’s an antidepressant, it offers weight loss, and it improves confidence.”

But those effects soon wear out.

“Someone might start out with methylphenidate or Vyvanse, but then their tolerance builds and they want more,” he said.

While opioids are more lethal than prescription stimulants, some experts see parallels between the opioid epidemic and the increase of problems tied to stimulants.

In the opioid epidemic, users switched from prescription narcotics to heroin and illicit fentanyl. With the ADHD drugs, patients such as Hannon have switched from legally prescribed stimulants to illicit ones, such as methamphetamine and cocaine.

Other similarities include loose criteria for diagnosing underlying conditions and large numbers of prescription drug options —  more than a dozen in the case of ADHD. The relaxed definition of adult ADHD also has played a role.



“Clearly it becomes a cat and mouse game of new diagnoses begetting new drugs.”

Petros Levounis, chair of psychiatry at Rutgers, said he saw an increase in people seeking help for stimulant addiction when he opened a treatment center aimed at college students.

Levounis said he believes ADHD is poorly understood, which leads to both under- and over-treatment.

In some cases, people who need treatment don’t seek help, he said. Other times, doctors are quick to diagnose ADHD when other conditions are causing the problems.

“Medicine has a huge responsibility with what happened with the prescription opioid epidemic,” Levounis said. “If there is something brewing with prescription stimulants, we should be doubly, triply concerned about it.”

Drug company representatives say adult ADHD is a real and treatable medical condition affecting millions of Americans and that all medicines carry benefits and risks.

Charlie Catalano, a spokesman for Shire, which makes the ADHD drugs Vyvanse and Adderall, said the drugs have been approved by regulators around the world as safe to use.

“Our medications are proven to be effective when used according to prescribing practices of a licensed, trained health care professional,” he said.

Eric Althoff, a spokesman for Novartis, which makes Ritalin, said its drug “has been used safely and effectively for more than 60 years.”  He noted that “if used inappropriately, the results could be serious, just like with the misuse of any other medication.”

Evidence of problems mounts

Overdoses and deaths involving prescription stimulants are not tracked by any one government entity. To assess the scope of the adult ADHD drug problem, the Journal Sentinel and MedPage Today examined data from federal, state and municipal authorities:

Reports to the FDA: The analysis of FDA adverse event reports showed more problems occurred in children, for whom ADHD has long been a common diagnosis. But when adults did report problems, they were more likely to be serious and life-threatening.

Adults accounted for just over one-third of reports, but made up more than half of all hospitalizations and 85% of deaths.

Users reported several psychological problems. Hallucinations, suicidal thoughts and depression show up in hundreds of reports. Quitting the drugs also posed a problem, as several reports indicated withdrawal symptoms.

Except for Strattera, nearly all adult ADHD drugs are stimulants. That drug has not been shown to lead to abuse, but carries the FDA’s most stringent warning because it can create suicidal thoughts in children and adolescents.

Adults are warned that it can cause serious cardiovascular problems, including strokes, heart attacks and sudden death.

Emergency room visits: In 1972, the Drug Enforcement Administration set up a system to monitor emergency room visits caused by drug abuse. Though the program, known as the Drug Abuse Warning Network, stopped collecting data in 2011, in its final years a rise in stimulant-related visits stood out.

In 2004, just two ADHD drugs played a role in 10,800 cases of emergency department visits. By 2011, the figure for those two drugs jumped to 42,000, a nearly fourfold increase in less than a decade.

The increase involved methylphenidate, the stimulant in Ritalin, and amphetamine/dextroamphetamine, the stimulant in Adderall.

New definitions or lowered thresholds mean millions more people – overnight – fit the criteria of having treatable disorders. Critics say the changes mean more patients may end up being treated with drugs that may be risky. Here is a closer look at eight psychiatric and medical conditions.

In 2004, the number of emergency amphetamine/dextroamphetamine-related visits in those 25 and older was so low it couldn’t be estimated. By 2011, there were 10,000 people age 25 to 44 who went to emergency rooms after using the drug.

In the five years since the tracking program ended, the DEA has approved a 60% increase in amphetamine production and the number of prescriptions for ADHD drugs jumped 20%.

The tracking was ended due to a lack of funding, said Elizabeth Crane, an analyst at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, which last oversaw the program.

“It was unfortunate timing,” she acknowledged.

Death reports: The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not separate overdose deaths caused by prescription stimulants from those due to illicit stimulants.

Still, the number of deaths in the overall category has increased by 22%, on average, every year since 2008. In 2014, the most recent year available, there were 5,100 deaths.

Other data suggests deaths from amphetamines specifically have exploded. While a few of the drugs can be used to treat conditions such as narcolepsy and binge-eating disorder, the vast majority of their use is for ADHD.

In Florida, medical examiners found amphetamines in 1,318 cases from 2008 to 2014, ruling that the drugs contributed to 277 deaths. Florida is one of just a few states that centrally track medical examiner death data.

In 2008, the drugs led to 12 deaths. In 2014, reports reached 67 deaths.

If that rate were applied to the nation, it would mean there were more than 1,000 deaths from amphetamines in 2014.

Preliminary data indicates a substantial increase in deaths in Florida again in 2015.

“It looks to me like it’s an under-the-radar epidemic,” said psychiatrist Ken Duckworth, medical director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness. “It’s a real phenomenon.”


John Fauber is a reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Matthew Wynn and Kristina Fiore are reporters for MedPage Today. This story was reported as a joint project of the Journal Sentinel and MedPage Today, which provides a clinical perspective for physicians on breaking medical news at medpagetoday.com.

How do ADHD drugs work?

Stimulants often are used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. That may seem counterintuitive —  those with the condition typically are fidgety or impulsive. Wouldn’t a stimulant make the condition worse?

One theory is the drugs, which increase levels of the brain chemical dopamine, provide mental stimulation. That, in turn, allows users to become more focused and calm because they no longer need to engage in self-stimulating behavior.





A 45-year-old man faces a sexual assault charge after Lubbock police in April said they found a woman held captive in his home.

Thomas Cavazos was indicted Tuesday on a second-degree felony count of sexual assault of an adult, which carries a punishment of two to 20 years in prison.15658152

Police investigators suspect Cavazos held captive a woman in his home in the 5200 block of County Road 7360 and sexually assaulted her after giving her methamphetamine, according to court records.

The Avalanche-Journal does not identify victims or alleged victims of sexual abuse.

A police officer was assisting in an unrelated car theft case April 13 in the 2700 block of South Loop 289 and arrested a suspected car thief who was also being investigated by the Texas Department of Public Safety in connection with human trafficking.

The next day, the officer learned Cavazos was allegedly holding captive a woman in his home, court records state. Police officers visited Cavazos’ home and found the woman in a locked bedroom, as well as a glass pipe containing a crystal-like substance, according to police.

According to court records, the woman told officials Cavazos had a reputation for violence and didn’t fight him off out of fear.

Police arrested Cavazos on Aug. 19 and booked him into the Lubbock County Detention Center, where he remains.

His bond is set at $250,000, according to jail records.

He also faces a state jail felony charge of possession of a controlled substance. His bond on that charge is set at $50,000.






LEESBURG — A homeless woman was tased Monday night after she reportedly broke into a Leesburg shed to cook meth and became aggressive with deputies.

According to an arrest affidavit and investigative report, Lake County sheriff’s deputies went to 34138 Lee Ave. in Leesburg at 11:25 p.m. to reports of a burglary and a woman producing drugs there.57d832ef9f546_image

A pair of residents told deputies they had given Amy Arena permission to be in a shed that they use as a laundry room, but then they heard a dog bark and discovered her in another shed that she wasn’t supposed to be in. They saw her returning to the wash room shed and spotted her producing methamphetamine.

When deputies arrived, they found Arena, 39, leaning against a washer but she reportedly struggled as deputies tried to arrest her, and they eventually used a Taser to get her to comply.

Deputies reportedly found multiple chemical compounds and 125 grams of meth in the laundry room.

Arena was decontaminated, then charged with trafficking and manufacturing methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia and resisting arrest. She remained in the Lake County Jail Tuesday afternoon without bail.






A Richmond couple was arrested Saturday evening for stealing music equipment from a local church.

According to a citation, Richmond Police officers responded to the Temple of Deliverance located at 640 Big Hill Avenue Wednesday evening in regards to three amplifiers that had been taken form the church earlier in the day.

While investigating the crime, officers discovered two of the amps were pawned at Dan’s Discount by Amanda Nicole Hamilton, 24, of Big Hill Avenue. A citation noted the 57d7357d63b12_imageamplifiers were pawned for a total of $96, but were value at approximately $800.

Hamilton told officers she went to the church, entered through an open door and removed the amplifiers with assistance from her boyfriend Justin Trevor Curtis, 27, of Big Hill Avenue, a citation stated.

Hamilton admitted she had taken and pawned the equipment in order to help her drug addiction, according to a citation.

Hamilton was charged with third-degree burglary and theft by deception (under $500). Curtis was charged with third-degree burglary. Both were lodged in the Madison County Detention Center, where they remained Monday afternoon, according to online jail records.