Drugs a hot item in warm weather

By Danza Johnson/NEMS Daily Journal

TUPELO – Drug offenses in the area are up over the past couple of months and authorities say the warm weather is a factor.
Capt. Marvis Bostick, commander of the Northeast Mississippi Narcotics Unit, said his agents have seen a spike in recreational drug cases in the task force’s areas recently. Even though the types of drugs used stay virtually the same, the areas and situations they are used have changed.
Bostick said outside recreational and social activities allow more opportunities for drug problems. “We generally see an increase in drug activity during the summer months,” said Bostick.
“People are more active and social in warm weather months because of the longer days, vacation time from work, etc.”
Bostick says alcohol remains the No. 1 substance abused but drugs like marijuana and cocaine, considered party drugs, are also heavily abused.
Felony drug arrests increase during this time period, said Bostick.
Lee County Sheriff Jim Johnson said his department also sees more problems out of marijuana and cocaine but it’s the increase in alcohol-related problems that he worries about the most.
“The alcohol is legal so you have more people using it than other drugs,” said Johnson. “But that makes it more easily abused. So the more alcohol people are consuming we see more domestic violence, DUI and more disturbances because of it. And especially this time of year.”
In Oxford the situation is just the opposite because in the summer months most of the college students are gone and drug cases tend to slow down.
“In the summer about 10,000 students are gone,” said Oxford Police Chief Mark Martin. “So we don’t see any increases.” As for the problems in other parts of Northeast Mississippi, “Drug abusers should understand law enforcement expects this increase in activity at this time each year,” Martin said. “And proactive measures to intercept and arrest those who are involved in illegal drug activity are stepped up accordingly.”

Contact Danza Johnson at (662) 678- 1583 or danza.johnson@journalinc.com.

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