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Can drug addiction lead to criminal behavior?

Many people experiment with drugs one time and never use them again. Others, however, continue to use drugs on a regular basis, hoping that this does not have a negative impact on their life.

Drug addiction has the ability to lead to criminal behavior. Using drugs has been associated with many violent crimes, ranging from burglary to murder to rape.

Furthermore, and just as important, is the fact that sending people to jail for drug crimes does not always lead to a better life in the future. According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc., jail alone has little impact on the reduction of drug addiction.

The Uniform Crime Reporting Program of the FBI found that there were approximately 1.7 million local and state arrests related to drug abuse violations in 2009 alone. This statistic proves that this remains a major problem throughout the United States.

With the possibility of drug addiction leading to criminal behavior, it only makes sense for law enforcement to crack down on people who are partaking in such activity. The problem with this is that police are often times overzealous. This can lead to mistakes that can have an impact on the accused.

Law enforcement officers may not always make the best decisions when it comes to investigating these crimes and arresting people who may be involved. This is why everybody should understand the seriousness of drug addiction and its link to criminal behavior. They should also know their legal rights if they are charged with a drug crime and the potential alternatives to incarceration that can help get at the root of their problem.

Source: National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc., "Drugs and Crime," accessed Sep. 20, 2015

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Robert D. DiDio
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