Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Lawmaker Urging Tougher Law for Heroin Dealing

A northern Kentucky legislator is calling for tougher jail penalties for heroin dealing, but treatment advocates say the harsher criminal punishments don't help with the problem of addiction.

Sen. John Schickel's proposed bill would impose harsher sentences for heroin trafficking. It would also charge any person caught selling heroin of any amount with first-degree trafficking.

Schickel, a Republican from Union, blames the spread of the highly addictive drug on a 2011 reform law that lowered trafficking penalties.

But recovery advocate Charlotte Wethington says Schickel's proposal would make it difficult to distinguish traffickers who sell for profit from those who are supporting an addiction. She says incarceration alone is not the answer to the heroin problem