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Drug-Involved Offenders: Crime-Prison-Treatment

Drug-Involved Offenders: Crime-Prison-Treatment


DRUG-INVOLVED OFFENDERS: CRIME-PRISON-TREATMENT JAMES A. INCIARDI University of Delaware During the closing years of the 1970s, just prior to the beginning of the Reagan presidency, a new epidemic of drug use was noticed in the United States. Rather than the psychedelics of the 1960s or the heroin and Quaaludes of the early 1970s the problem was a derivative on the rather innocuous Peruvian shrub Erythroxylum coca Lam.-cocaine (Inciardi, 1992, pp. 81-98). Cocaine was nothing new to the United Sates, having first appeared a century earlier. However, by the late 1970s, the drug was being smuggled into the United States from South America in record quantities. Moreover, the use of cocaine appeared to be escalating, particularly in America's inner cities. And a concomitant of the increased presence of cocaine on the streets of the United States was rising rates of crime-particularly violent crime. The 1980s witnessed the rediscovery of crack cocaine. The American crack experience is fairly well-known, having been reported (and perhaps overreported) in the media since early in 1986. There were the highs, binges, and crashes that induced addicts to sell their belongings and their bodies in pursuit of more crack; the high addiction liability of the
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