Potter County Has The Most Meth Users In Texas - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Potter County Has The Most Meth Users In Texas

Charlene Cheek of Meth Free Texas says jail time does not offer rehabilitative solutions to meth abusers. Charlene Cheek of Meth Free Texas says jail time does not offer rehabilitative solutions to meth abusers.

Methamphetimine abuse is worse in Potter County than in any other county in the state. That's according to a report by the Gulf Coast Addiction Technology Center, and it's spurring local groups to combat the rapidly growing problem.

Dr. Keith Price a local Criminologist says one of the reason Potter County is seeing such high numbers is because methamphetimine is so easy to make and use.

"You go buy the materials yourself from a local source. You mix it up in your sink. You immediately got a market. When someone uses meth their high is immediate, so you've got a customer that's coming back."

One program proposes to help the problem by eliminating jail time for non-violent methamphetimine abusers. Charlene Cheek of Meth Free Texas says jail time does not offer rehabilitative solutions to meth abusers. So she's starting this day reporting program to get inmates the treatment they need. So Cheek proposes to combat that by spear heading patties project. It's a day reporting program that would offer non-violent inmates who abuse meth an alternative to jail or prison.

"Work with the probation department, so we would eliminate the jail all together and they would do that as a condition of probation to go to a day reporting center," said Cheek

The project is modeled after a similar program in Tyler, Texas. One that claims it made the community safer, rehabilitated inmates, and saved the city more than a million dollars. A model Cheek wants Amarillo to follow.

"Tons of money savings for number 1, number 2 it would be a much healthier community. We have to start treating the poeple rather than just locking them up. It's a family issue."

Cheek says she plans to propose the idea to the Amarillo City Commission within 90 days.

 

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