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Crack Epidemic

OPINION
August 18, 2006 | Nick Schou, NICK SCHOU is an editor for OC Weekly. His book, "Kill the Messenger: How the CIA's Crack-Cocaine Controversy Destroyed Journalist Gary Webb," will be published in October.
TEN YEARS AGO today, one of the most controversial news articles of the 1990s quietly appeared on the front page of the San Jose Mercury News. Titled "Dark Alliance," the headline ran beneath the provocative image of a man smoking crack -- superimposed on the official seal of the CIA. The three-part series by reporter Gary Webb linked the CIA and Nicaragua's Contras to the crack cocaine epidemic that ripped through South Los Angeles in the 1980s.
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ENTERTAINMENT
March 9, 1990 | KEVIN THOMAS
Laemmle Theaters is currently screening all five Oscar-nominated feature-length documentaries. Four of them are being presented on Saturday and Sunday mornings at the Monica 4-Plex in Santa Monica, while "Common Threads: Stories From the Quilt" continues its long-running Sunday 11 a.m. engagement at the Music Hall in Beverly Hills.
NEWS
August 2, 1989 | From the Washington Post
Spurred by a worldwide "explosion" in opium production, heroin of unprecedented purity has started to show up on the streets of some East Coast cities, prompting growing fears that the nation may be on the verge of a new wave of heroin abuse that could rival the crack epidemic, federal officials said Tuesday. David Westrate, assistant administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration, said a study of street samples in New York, Philadelphia, Boston and Newark, N.J.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 17, 1990 | Compiled from Times wire and staff reports
People who smoke crack cocaine appear to increase their risk of strokes, and doctors should consider drug abuse whenever treating young people with strokes, according to a study published last week in the New England Journal of Medicine. The report found "a strong temporal, if not causal," link between crack and strokes. "We believe that the ongoing crack epidemic will lead to more cocaine-related strokes," said Steven R. Levine and his colleagues at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 24, 2005 | Jean Guccione, Times Staff Writer
A San Diego judge has reduced the prison sentence for "Freeway" Ricky Ross, the notorious South Los Angeles crack kingpin who ruled the trade in the 1990s, from 20 to 16 1/2 years. Ross was convicted in 1996 of conspiring to buy more than 100 kilograms of cocaine from a police informant and, based on two prior drug convictions in Texas and Ohio, sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
NEWS
November 20, 1999 | JESSE KATZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A federal judge on Friday kept open the possibility that jailed drug dealer "Freeway" Ricky Ross could be granted a new trial, saying that a U.S. Justice Department probe into the ex-kingpin's 1996 conviction raised enough questions to merit further review. U.S.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 16, 2005 | Tina Daunt, Times Staff Writer
Gary Webb planned his death with polite precision. He typed out four lengthy suicide notes and put them in the mail to family members. He placed his prearranged cremation certificate and Social Security card on the kitchen counter of his suburban Sacramento home. He put the keys to his cars and motorcycles in an envelope addressed to his oldest son.
NEWS
April 6, 2002 | From Associated Press
The U.S. Sentencing Commission indicated Friday that it will ask Congress to change drug laws to reduce differences in punishments involving crack cocaine and powder cocaine, a change the Justice Department believes is unnecessary. The sentencing commission, in a statement, said it was concerned not only about whether cocaine punishments were fair but also "whether the penalties are perceived as fair."
OPINION
January 1, 1995
The Times deserves credit for focusing attention on the economic and social costs of crack cocaine in the Dec. 22 editorial, "An Addiction That Afflicts Us All." Your call for greater emphasis on programs like DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) which attack this problem from the demand side is especially timely. While the crack epidemic continues to rage in our city, we have seen DARE disappear from middle and high schools in Los Angeles due to staffing cuts. DARE uses specially trained police officers to teach children the practical skills necessary to avoid involvement with tobacco, alcohol, drugs, violence and gangs and make positive life choices.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 17, 1989
When complex social pathology is mistaken for a police problem, the result is the sort of plan that William J. Bennett, the Bush Administration's new drug czar, put forward last week as the Administration's response to Washington, D.C.'s, catastrophic crack cocaine problem. As that hideously addictive substance has spread through the capital's poor, most black inner city over the past few years, the city's murder rate has climbed to seven times the disgraceful national average.
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