New Patch Tracks Drug Offenders

Probation Officer Terry Easterling
Probation Officer Terry Easterling

She was using methamphetamines on a regular basis and says a New Potter County "Drugs of Abuse Patch" helped her get clean.

Illegal drugs including cocaine, opiates, amphetamines, PCP, and marijuana can all be detected by the patch through sweat.

I spoke with a local woman who shares how the patch successfully deterred her from using illegal drugs while on probation.

When Rosalina Barber got caught in possession of drugs she says she panicked. "I didn't want to go to jail. Nobody wants to go to jail."

She says she used methamphetamines and prescription pain medications for about 2 years.

"I used drugs very heavily. I used it day in day out. For sometime I could not even get a job because I was so bad addicted to this."

The county's goal is to prevent jail over crowding while still keeping an eye on offenders who will hopefully stop using drugs.

Probation Officer Terry Easterling says, "It's obviously alot cheaper than jail. It's alot cheaper than inpatient drug and alcohol treatment but it's just one tool."

For Barber the patch helped her stay clean in the long run. "When the drugs went away I was forced to face life with my hurt and my pain and my wrongs."

The patch is being used as an alterative to jail time costing taxpayers nothing. Compared to 40 dollars each day an offender spends in jail.

Easterling says a dozen Potter County offenders are currently using the patch but up to 14 hundred offenders are eligible.

Because of its success there are plans to expand the program.