February 3, 2014 |
The death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman is bringing attention to the growing use of heroin in the U.S. as well as an alarming rise in drug-overdose deaths. The cause of death for Hoffman, found in his apartment Sunday, isn't official, but police say officers found packets of heroin near his body and a hypodermic needle in his arm. Hundreds of thousands in the U.S. are turning to the drug in increasing numbers. It's at "epidemic proportions," a Drug Enforcement Administration spokesman told the L.A. Times. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports a 102% increase in fatal overdoses from 1999 to 2010. Check out our graphic below, which shows how the availability of the drug has increased in the United States over the last several years. Follow me at @AmyTheHub
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 15, 2013 |
Federal prosecutors unveiled indictments Thursday against 57 members of an alleged drug trafficking ring that authorities said smuggled cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine from Mexico to Los Angeles, using concealed compartments and PVC piping. Drug Enforcement Administration agents arrested 18 of the alleged traffickers, whose drug distribution network stretched from the Mexican border to truck yards in Wilmington and South Gate and suburban homes in Sun Valley and Sylmar. During the course of an investigation that started in early 2011, authorities seized more than 2,400 pounds of methamphetamine, 30 kilograms of cocaine, 16 kilos of white heroin, 20 kilos of brown heroin and more than $1.2 million in cash from suspected narcotics transactions.
July 16, 2013 |
"Glee" star Cory Monteith died of a "mixed drug toxicity" involving heroin and alcohol, according to results released Tuesday by the British Columbia Coroner's Service in Canada. The investigation is continuing, according to the release , but it went on to say the 31-year-old actor's death appears to be accidental. "It should be noted that at this point there is no evidence to suggest Mr. Monteith's death was anything other than a most-tragic accident," the service, which performed the autopsy and toxicology test on Monday, noted in a statement.
April 16, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. has been crusading for more lenient treatment for nonviolent drug offenders, making it a top priority before he is expected to leave office this year. Recently, however, he has been forced to confront an epidemic of deaths from heroin and prescription drug abuse, one that his opponents have cited as a reason for not loosening drug sentences. In prepared remarks for a speech Wednesday, Holder cited the "stunning rise in heroin and prescription opiate overdose deaths" and vowed the Justice Department was committed to "rigorous enforcement" of the drug laws and "robust treatment" of drug addicts.
August 22, 1986 |
Felix Mitchell, a convicted California drug ring leader serving a life term at the federal prison here, died early today after being stabbed, prison officials said. Mitchell, 32, was found wounded in his cell by prison staff members about 3 p.m. Thursday and was taken to a local hospital. The Oakland man was convicted last year on charges of conspiracy to sell heroin and operating a continuing criminal enterprise.
April 16, 1987 |
A Nigeria Airways captain, his pockets and luggage bulging with an estimated $8-million worth of heroin, was arrested Wednesday by federal agents who impounded the jumbo jet he was trying to board, authorities said. Federal prosecutors said the captain, John Billy-Eko, 47, was not piloting the plane but arranged to be aboard as a crew member so he could pass more easily through customs. Assistant U.S. Atty.
December 13, 2004 |
New Jersey's heroin was found to be the purest in the nation for the second year in a row, a dubious distinction that has sparked concern in the medical and law enforcement communities. U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration tests of heroin samples obtained from New Jersey streets showed 71.4% purity in 2002, nearly twice the national average. In the 2003 report, due out soon, the state again will hold the top spot, DEA spokesman Rusty Payne told the Star-Ledger of Newark.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 26, 2012 |
The young woman sat by herself in a hallway of the bustling courthouse, nervously clasping a brown paper bag. Inside was a warm bean and cheese burrito stuffed with 24 grams of black tar heroin. Henry Marin, a Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy, peeked out from a courtroom and waved her over. Lunchtime was approaching - lawyers in suits clutched their briefcases and witnesses waited to testify. As the handoff was made, no one appeared to be paying attention - until a voice commanded: "Deputy Marin, you need to stop.
January 25, 1990
Eight people were arrested Wednesday on drug charges at a house that was allegedly used as a heroin distribution center. Inocente Rivera, 44, Sergio Sanchez, 21, and Jose Beltran, 22, all of La Habra, were arrested on suspicion of possession of narcotics with intent to sell after police searched a house in the 100 block of North Marian Street, La Habra Police Lt. Terry Ramell said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 19, 1985 |
A dose of heroin triggered comedian John Belushi's death in the midmorning hours of March 5, 1982, a pathologist testified Wednesday. Dr. Michael Baden, a deputy medical examiner for New York City, was called as a prosecution witness in the fourth day of a preliminary hearing for Cathy Evelyn Smith. Smith, 38, is charged with second-degree murder and 13 counts of drug furnishing in connection with the comedian's death at Chateau Marmont Hotel in Hollywood. Deputy Dist. Attys. Michael J.