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Colorado trial attorneys

Colorado sees increase in overdose deaths

On behalf of Dolan + Zimmerman LLP April 30, 2019

With drug addiction comes the possibility of overdose. Looking at the numbers, there are many people in Colorado who are struggling – either themselves or by watching a loved one – and many more are losing the battle.

The Colorado Health Institute released preliminary numbers, showing an increase in the number of people who died from an overdose, both intentionally and unintentionally. The number is on the rise from previous years. While less than 400 people died in 2000, in 2017 the tally is currently at 959. This is up from 912 in 2016.

Why are more people overdosing?

Why are more people dying from drug overdoses and what can be done to reverse this trend?

It is impossible to isolate just one cause. Rather, there are a number of contributing factors.

For many opioid users, it all starts with a legal prescription by a doctor. As hospitals are starting to take notice and cut down on prescribing potentially addictive pain medications, people who are already addicted are now turning to street drugs to feed their addictions.

Combine this with the fact that drug treatment options are lacking in some areas, while in other areas it’s just impossible to keep up with the sheer number of people who need treatment.

This is not just an issue in Colorado. The heroin and opioid epidemic is one spreading across the country. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported drug overdose death increases in 36 states and the District of Columbia. It’s a problem everywhere.

Does a drug arrest help or hurt?

With drug use comes the threat of drug arrests. Not only is using drugs illegal, but addiction can lead people to make choices they otherwise would not make. A person who once had their life together may resort to selling drugs in order to support their own addiction. It can become a tragic cycle that is difficult to escape.

Getting arrested does not make things easier. It can be an eye-opening experience, but it can also make it harder for someone to get their life back on track.

Many Colorado prosecutors are increasingly sympathetic to the problems caused by addiction. Some prosecutors are resistant to up-to-date information about the impact of addiction. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you understand the legal issues and options that exist in your case. The right attorney can also help you develop mitigation, and can present it to the prosecutor in the most effective possible way. If those strategies fail, an attorney can take your case to trial. A drug arrest should not be faced alone.