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How common are drug crimes?

While you may notice drug crimes referenced often in television and the movies, how common are these in actuality? The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependance has gathered some key statistics that shed light on this, not only in Wisconsin, but across the United States.

First off, the numbers from 2009 show that there were a grand total of 1.7 million arrests made in connection with drugs. This number comes from the data provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Uniform Crime Reporting Program.

Out of all people behind bars, a staggering 80 percent are thought to use drugs or alcohol to an extent that constitutes abuse. It has been said that roughly half of inmates are considered to be addicted to these substances. When looking at all arrests, the data shows that 60 percent of the people who are picked up have some sort of drug in their system at the time.

These numbers are so important because the United States has an incredible amount of people in jail; almost one out of every 100 people is in prison.

Also worthy of note is the fact that the vast majority of people who abuse drugs and then serve time do not stop because of the sentence. About 95 percent of them simply go back to the abuse when they leave.

As you can see, drug-related arrests are incredibly common in American society, which has a very high incarceration rate. When these arrests are made, it is very important for those who have been accused to know what legal options they have as the cases progress.

Source: NCADD, "Drugs and Crime" Nov. 26, 2014

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