drugs

Lindsay Fox, flickr Creative Commons

Coleman Middle School Principal Eric Filippi says he was blind to all the different ways drugs can be concealed and the variety of forms that they can take.

“I did not think of it as something that can be put into a spray bottle and be sprayed on food,” Filippi says.

Law enforcement officers in Kansas and across the country will be collecting unused, expired and leftover medications on Saturday.

It’s an initiative called the National Drug Take-Back Day.

In Sedgwick County, officers will be staffing five locations from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. for people to drop-off their unused prescription or over-the-counter medicines.

The sites include the Sedgwick County Zoo, Oaklawn Activity Center and Household Hazardous Waste center, all in Wichita, as well as the Goddard City Hall and the fire station in Cheney.

Tex Texin / flickr Creative Commons

More than 40 people have been arrested in western Kansas on various drug and weapons charges, the Kansas Bureau of Investigation announced Wednesday.

This week's arrests come in the wake of a two-month long investigation by the KBI and various law enforcement agencies in western Kansas and eastern Colorado.

At least 41 people have been taken into custody for the distribution of marijuana and methamphetamine, and for various weapons violations.

frankieleon / flickr Creative Commons

Kansans safely disposed of more than eight tons of unused medicines during last week’s National Drug Take-Back Day, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt said today.

Kansas law enforcement officers collected 16,314 pounds of medicines at more than 100 locations throughout the state during last Saturday’s event, according to a report from the federal Drug Enforcement Administration. This was the largest single-day of collection since the semi-annual program began in 2010, far surpassing the 13,894 pounds collected in April 2016.

Law enforcement officers in Kansas and across the country will be collecting unused, expired and leftover medications on Saturday.

It’s an initiative called the National Drug Take-Back Day.

The drug collection events are a way to safely dispose of leftover and expired medications to prevent accidental or intentional misuse.

Studies show a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.

respectable_photography / flickr Creative Commons

The Kansas House has given first-round approval to a bill lowering penalties for possession of drug paraphernalia.

Republican Rep. Blaine Finch says lawmakers lowered penalties for first-time marijuana possession last year, but didn’t lower penalties for paraphernalia. That means people could face harsher sentences for possession of a pipe than for possession of marijuana.

“It does keep it at a crime. There is a potential jail sentence," he says. "It just makes it proportional with the possession of the underlying drug."

Nadya Faulx / KMUW

A recent increase in heroin-related deaths prompted Sedgwick County officials on Thursday to warn residents about the dangers of some of the drugs they’re starting to see in the community.

Sedgwick County District Attorney Marc Bennett said he hasn’t seen a major increase in the number of heroin possession or distribution cases in recent years.

“You don’t really see a huge spike in the past few years, but the toxicity, I don't know if I'm using the right word here, but lethality of the stuff that is on the streets is concerning," he said.

Oliver Morrison / The Wichita Eagle

On his last full day in office, President Barack Obama granted clemency to 330 drug offenders. That brings the total number of prisoners whose sentences were commuted under Obama to nearly 1700 -- more than the 11 previous presidents combined.

Richard Reser is one of those 1700. He returned to Topeka in December and recently spoke to Wichita Eagle reporter Oliver Morrison about how he's adjusting to life after prison.

Abigail Beckman / KMUW

A local non-profit coalition hoping to curtail prescription and illicit drug and alcohol abuse came together Tuesday to spread the word about prevention and renew their efforts.

Luke Runyon / Harvest Public Media

A doctor handed Melissa Morris her first opioid prescription when she was 20 years old.

She had a cesarean section to deliver her daughter, and to relieve post-surgical pain her doctor sent her home with Percocet. On an empty stomach, she took one pill and laid down on her bed.

“I remember thinking to myself, ‘Oh my god. Is this legal? How can this feel so good?’” Morris recalls.

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