Substance abuse and crime are inexorably linked to one another, the latter being the cause and result of the former. Increasing number of people apprehended for crimes have confessed to drug misuse at some point in their lives. Moreover, addiction to illicit drug use, in the long run, has, in turn, added to increasing crime rates. The kind of offenses that people commit under the influence of drugs includes acts of domestic violence, drunk driving, physical attacks, prostitution and rape.
Prior studies have indicated a strong association between severe drug abuse and prevalence of criminal behavior. The researchers attribute the same to a possible reduction of social support as well as limited social network. other conditions are also responsible for people resorting to drug use or illegal activities such as long-term unemployment, poor living conditions, broken marriages, unconcerned families and poor psychological health.
Relationship between drug use and crime is complicated
The relationship between drug use and crime is a complex one. Illegal drug use has raised the risk of crime rates in the United States that pushed the agencies at the federal level to take necessary measures in bringing the condition under control. This is evident from the rise in number of drug-related arrests that form a significant chunk of the total number of arrests that have taken place in the country. The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) clearly pinpoints how alcohol and drug use are involved in roughly 80 percent of cases resulting in imprisonment in America.
More Americans incarcerated during the past few years on charges of crime were tested positive for use of illicit drugs during their arrest. The association between drugs and crimes gets more complex as researchers and law enforcement agencies have not able to identify if drug use forced people to commit crimes or if drug users were already predisposed to be engaged in criminal activity of any nature.
Classifying crimes linked to drug misuse
The types of crimes related to drug abuse are mainly these:
- Consumption–related criminal activities: These include crimes that involve those who consume drugs and commit an offense owing to its impact on their thought processes and behavior.
- Money–related criminal activities: These involve offensive activities wherein drug users commit crime to pay for their addictive habits. Such activities may include robbery, larceny and prostitution.
- Drug system–related crime: There are some crimes that may be attributed to the drug system. These may include production, manufacture, transportation and sale of drugs apart from the violence linked to either production or sale of illegal drugs.
Investing in treatment and recovery is beneficial
Addiction has gripped the nation in the cruelest forms. This is evident from figures shared by federal agencies indicating that roughly half of prisoners arrested at the state and federal level meet the criteria for drug abuse. The most unfortunate fact about the prevailing addiction problem is that less than 20 percent of the prisoners receive the treatment that they need.
There is an increased risk of crime if dependent criminals get bailed or discharged without the necessary treatment for addiction. The uncontrolled desire to have drugs coerces them to commit further crimes that may at times be more heinous than before. Preventing future crimes proves arduous for the criminal justice system as more people are let off without being completely treated. According to the NCADD, approximately 95 percent of the inmates resort to substance abuse after being released from imprisonment, while nearly 60-80 percent of drug abusers are responsible for new drug-related crimes.
If you or your loved one is suffering due to addiction to drugs, the Florida Drug Addiction Helpline can assist with the best facilities in addiction treatment in Florida. The drug addiction treatment centers in Florida offer comprehensive treatments and help gain sobriety. You can also call our 24/7 helpline number at 855-982-2401 or chat online with our experts for further help.