“There are people who make a choice to use drugs; then there are those, who choose not to use drugs, but still end up being affected by the drug,” said Chief Deputy Prosecutor, Delaware County, Eric Hoffman, referring to the 26-year-old Diasha Clark. This young mother from Yorktown, Virginia, is facing charges after her 16-month-old baby boy overdosed on heroin.
When the baby was found, he had a small plastic pouch, containing a powdery substance, in his mouth. The substance is alleged to be heroin. The child soon lost consciousness and stopped breathing. He was rushed to the hospital by a cousin, where he was revived using Narcan. Clark was arrested on charges of neglect of a dependent, reckless possession of paraphernalia and possession of a syringe. “It breaks my heart to so see how a mother can even put her child in danger,” said a lady in the neighborhood, where Clark lives.
Addiction to heroin is devastating communities all across America, and particularly, in the state of California. Due to its geographical proximity to the Mexican border, racially diverse demographics, excellent infrastructure and well-developed transportation facilities, California is bearing the brunt of cross-border narcotics trading. The drug is not simply limited to impoverished neighborhoods, and is, in fact, used even in the suburbs and the upscale areas, causing a groundbreaking surge in fatal overdose cases in the recent years.
Experts believe that the government crackdown on opioid manufacturing mills has made it difficult for people addicted to drugs to procure prescription opioids, such as OxyContin, fentanyl and Vicodin, without a genuine prescription. Therefore, the need for a similar-effect drug, with identical chemical structure and euphoria-inducing properties, has been fulfilled by the small-time drug dealers on the streets, by providing heroin, a pocket-friendly and deadly opiate. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), “those addicted to heroin have a history of nonmedical use of prescription opioid painkillers” and “Americans using heroin are likely to be using other drugs.”
Riverside County is California’s largest drug pipeline
The fact that Riverside County is the largest drug-trafficking hub in the United States, remained unknown for a long time. It was only uncovered when an unexpected pipe bomb, around a foot long and an inch-and-a-half wide, located below the overpass on the Interstate 10 – one of the busiest highways in the country – attracted the attention of a bomb disposal squad, which attempted to deactivate it.
When a bomb disposal robot fired copper and tin flakes to perforate the pipe, fine white powder came rushing out of the tiny holes. The mystery was unraveled when investigating officers found that the powder was methamphetamine (meth). It was assumed that the pipe must have slipped off a truck carrying contraband drugs headed for the east. This was accidental, yet one of the most startling discoveries, where a clandestine cross-country drug pipeline to transport heroin, meth and possibly other illicit substances, was laid bare to the outside world.
According to the Riverside Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) office, which also covers San Bernardino County, between the years 2012 and 2014, seizures amounting to 770 pounds of heroin and 6,500 pounds of meth were made. The total amount equals to approximately one-tenth of the heroin and one-fourth of the meth seized by the DEA nationwide.
Moreover, DEA officials believe that Mexico’s Sinaloa Cartel transports drugs through the stash houses across Riverside County, where they are stored before being distributed across markets in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and Canada. The outcome of such a practice is an intricate and invisible multimillion-dollar-network crisscrossing the county and concealed within the same shipping and trucking lanes that carry the drugs from Mexico. Furthermore, the recent years have seen an unprecedented surge in overdose deaths caused by heroin laced with fentanyl. In fact, nationwide, the death toll resulting from fatal heroin overdoses rivals the number of young Americans who died during the peak of the Vietnam War.
Heroin addiction can be treated
Research suggests that millions of Americans fall prey to an addiction faster than they might ever realize. The only way to break free from the clutches of the drug is to seek a customized heroin addiction treatment program at a reputed heroin addiction rehab to combat the devastating effects of the drug.
Sovereign Health understands the misery of someone who is unable to put an end to the use of deadly drugs despite the damaging consequences on his or her life. Our customized heroin addiction recovery plans at Sovereign Health of San Clemente are designed to treat the person holistically.
If you or your loved one is battling addiction to heroin, call our 24/7 helpline or chat online to know more about our state-of-the-art heroin treatment centers spread across California and other states of the U.S.