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Brock: Police need our help

The first time I really heard about methamphetamine was when I was working in South Dakota.

There was a story in the newspaper of a single mother in Iowa who was a meth addict. Her small children literally starved to death after she left them for more than a week when she was high on meth. The old cliché that there is nothing stronger than a mother’s love didn’t apply to the woman addicted to meth.

Meth is the worst drug possible for the user as it destroys the user like none other, and meth addiction is so powerful that addicts like the mother from Iowa will do anything possible to get high.

A quick Google search about meth addiction will show you graphic before-and-after photos of meth addicts. Not only do they hurt themselves but they will rob and steal from anyone, including their own families, or turn to prostitution. Many start dealing themselves to support their habit. Some cook their own meth, which is a very dangerous process for the user and anyone who comes in contact with the labs — including law enforcement. Once addicted, it is nearly impossible to stop using and most either end up dead or in jail.

That makes this week’s news of the drug bust of 22, including 15 from Dickinson, for

distribution of meth particularly alarming.

The defendants face charges in U.S. District Court for the District of North Dakota, and in Stark County court. The bust was a joint effort led by the FBI and the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation, in collaboration with Purdon’s office, the North Dakota Attorney General’s office and Stark County.

Our community owes a great debt to the members of Operation Pipe Cleaner that led to the arrests Wednesday.

But as North Dakota U.S. Attorney Tim Purdon said, defendants are increasing faster than cases in western North Dakota as organized drug trafficking follows the money to the Bakken. Those arrested are innocent until proven guilty, but the size of the bust should serve as a wake-up call to the size of the problem.

North Dakota law enforcement needs more resources to conduct even more operations to keep meth use from getting worse.

We, as a community, must educate ourselves of the horrific dangers of meth and do everything possible to assist law enforcement in arresting those using and dealing.

Brock is the publisher of The Dickinson Press. Email him at hbrock@thedickinsonpress.com.

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