Dry counties in Kentucky, which are those that currently prohibit the sale of alcohol, may be contributing to the proliferation of methamphetamine labs. A study shows an increase in the production of methamphetamine in dry counties as opposed to counties that do not restrict alcohol sales. This has increased drug arrests and felony drug charges in dry counties.
One theory for the reason behind the increase in drug crimes is that a black market for illegally selling alcohol encourages the sale of other illegal substances. The Kentucky research seems to show that methamphetamine has become the drug that has increased in popularity. At least one expert speculated that facing penalties for drug charges was not a sufficient deterrent in counties where a person would face penalties for illegal activities involving alcohol anyway.
The study concluded that serious charges for the manufacturing, sale and possession of methamphetamine were not the answer to the drug problem in dry counties. One solution it proposed might be changing the laws to allow alcohol to be sold in counties that are now dry. This is in the belief that people would use alcohol instead of methamphetamine, so the demand for drugs would go down.
The message that people should take from this study is that law enforcement agencies are aware of the increase in methamphetamine production and distribution. They are also aware of where to concentrate their investigation and enforcement efforts. If you are arrested in connection with drug crimes in Kentucky, you need the services of a criminal defense attorney because the penalties and consequences of felony drug charges can be severe.
Source: American City & County, “Study: Kentucky counties that ban alcohol have more meth problems,” Stephanie Toone, Sept. 28, 2015