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Meth and Northeast Indiana

Here in Indiana thousands of meth labs are busted every year, and the attorney general has pin-pointed northeast Indiana as an area with a growing meth problem.

Here in Indiana thousands of meth labs are busted every year, and the attorney general has pin-pointed northeast Indiana as an area with a growing meth problem.

 In 2012 Noble County and Kosciusko Counties reported the highest number of meth labs in northeast Indiana

The map shows the 2012 statistics for meth busts for every county across the state, and as you can see there's not one area that's not affected by meth.

WFFT's Charlie De Mar reached out to officials in our northern counties who are fighting meth on a local level and also spoke with Attorney General Greg Zoeller about what he's doing on a state level.

It's cheap to produce and packs a potent punch.  A couple factors that have fueled the popularity of meth in Northeast Indiana.  The state's Attorney General is confronting the problem head on but it's a battle he will never win.

"We know we have a problem, but how are we going to address the problem?"

Meth has the power to blow up homes and disfigure it's users.  Northeast Indiana has declared an all out war on meth.

"It's a huge problem for us", says Noble County Sheriff Doug Harp.  He also says it is plaguing his community and draining resources.  Noble County has busted 55 meth labs this year alone.  That's a high for Northeast Indiana.

"We will never know how much this actually costs the citizens of Noble County or the State of Indiana."

Harp says that the addiction is real and that it's never going to leave the area but he does think requiring a prescription for Sudafed, the main ingredient found in meth, is a positive step in curbing the drug that took the lives of 25 Hoosiers in 2012.  The drug touches thousands more in the form of criminal activity.

"I know it will be a big inconvenience for a lot of people, myself included but the fact of the matter is that it's proven to drastically reduce labs."

The meth stats in the region staggering from just a year ago, Allen County has already seen 49 meth busts compared to 32.  Noble and Elkhart Counties are also on the rise according to Indiana State Police.  Nearly 2,000 meth labs were seized last year.

"You just have to watch TV's Breaking Bad for example, to know that it is a nationwide problem."

Terry Gaff is the Medical Director at Parkview Hospital in Noble County and he says he is constantly treating patients who are addicted to meth. 

"We are going to have to do more that's the bottom line."


         

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