The possession of methamphetamine, also known as meth or crystal meth, is illegal in Kentucky, as are its manufacture and sale.
Despite the fact that some meth-related crimes carry with them stiff criminal penalties, meth use continues to grow in the state. If you use, make or sell meth, you are in a serious situation and should contact a criminal defense attorney.
Meth is a stimulant usually used as a white powder or a pill, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Crystal meth looks like glass fragments or shiny, bluish-white rocks. It’s chemically similar to amphetamine, a drug used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and narcolepsy.
Effects of Kentucky Meth Use
The high from meth starts and fades quickly, so it’s often used in repeated doses in a “binge and crash” pattern. Some binge on a “run,” giving up food and sleep while taking meth every few hours for up to several days.
Meth increases the natural chemical dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is involved in body movement, motivation, pleasure and reward (like you get from natural behaviors such as eating). Because meth creates high levels of dopamine quickly, the brain produces the “rush” (euphoria) or “flash” that users experience.
Using small amounts of meth could cause similar health effects as other stimulants, such as cocaine or amphetamines. These include:
- Being awake more
- Increased physical activity
- Less appetite
- Faster breathing
- Rapid and/or irregular heartbeat
- Higher blood pressure and body temperature.
Harm Done by Kentucky Meth Use
Long term effects of meth can seriously injure and disable users.
- Those who inject it have an increased risk of getting infectious, blood-related diseases, such as HIV and hepatitis B and C.
- Meth use could alter judgment and decision-making, resulting in risky behaviors such as unprotected sex, which increases the risk for contracting an infection.
- Meth use may worsen the progression of HIV/AIDS and its side effects.
Long-term meth use can cause . . .
- Extreme weight loss
- Extensive dental problems
- Intense itching, leading to skin sores because of compulsive scratching
- Sleeping problems
- Violent behavior
- Reduced physical coordination
- Impaired verbal learning
- Emotional problems
- Problems with memory.
Some changes in the brain caused by meth use may reverse after cessation of use for a year or more, but other harm may not be irreversible.
The most effective treatments for meth addiction are behavioral therapies:
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy, where patients learn to recognize, avoid and cope with the situations in which they are most likely to use drugs
- Motivational incentives, such as vouchers or small cash rewards for patients who remain drug free.
Possible Charges and Criminal Sentences for Kentucky Meth-related Charges
Local, state and federal law enforcement officials work to track down meth users, including those who buy meth’s ingredients (or precursors, which include cold remedies containing pseudoephedrine, such as Claritin-D and Sudafed, anhydrous ammonia and/or ammonia nitrate) and then use them in “meth labs” to create meth for their own use or for sale to others.
If you are found to be in possession of a drug product or combination of drug products with the intent to use the drug as a precursor in the manufacture of meth, or if you are found to have unlawfully distributed a meth precursor, you can be charged with a Class D felony (imprisonment for one to five years) for a first time offense and a Class C felony (imprisonment for five to ten years) if this is your second or subsequent offense.
Meth is dangerously addictive, and its manufacture is also a dangerous process, involving highly toxic chemicals. If children are in the area where meth is being manufactured they may be injured or killed because of explosion, fire, inhalation of toxic fumes or accidental consumption of the meth. You could be charged with Class D controlled substance endangerment of a child in the fourth degree if that child happens to be in the area of meth manufacture, even if he or she is not actually injured.
If you are charged with trafficking meth, including distributing, dispensing, selling, transferring or possessing with the intent to distribute, dispense or sell, your charges will depend on the amount of meth you were found to have trafficked and the number of times you have been charged with the offense of trafficking.
You Need Dan Carman
If you are charged with a meth-related crime, you will need the services of a defense attorney who is familiar with Kentucky’s laws on meth possession, manufacture and sale. Dan Carman has practiced law in Kentucky for years, and also served as in-house counsel for an infantry battalion when he was deployed to Iraq as a U.S. Marine. Dan has defended many Kentucky clients against drug charges, and he is ready to defend you.
If you have been charged with any offense related to methamphetamine, a phone call to Dan Carman should be your next step. He takes meth charges seriously, knows what it means for you and your family and he will fight for you and your future by crafting a strong defense. Contact him today.