War on Drugs

Drug abuse at center of Ottawa County judicial election
Alex Green
Jul 2, 2014

 

green@oc-register.com

Drug abuse and treatment options have been at the top of Lorrain Croy's political opponent's priority list.

The topic appears to be high on her list as well.

Both Croy, candidate for Ottawa County Common Pleas Court judge, and incumbent Judge Bruce Winters attended a judicial symposium Monday with state leaders in Columbus to discuss drug abuse and addiction throughout the state.

It was another obvious indication of the prevalence of opiates in Ohio, Croy said.

"(Drug abuse and addiction) not only affects Ottawa County, it affects all (88) counties" in the state,  Croy said. "Everybody has a problem."

Experts with the Mental Health and Recovery Board of Erie and Ottawa Counties recently determined opiates, particularly heroin, were among some of the cheapest and easiest illegal drugs to find in the state.

Ottawa County will start administering vivitrol to eligible parolees and inmates who suffer from drug and alcohol addiction in an attempt to fight against the seeming epidemic.

Vivtrol, a non-opiate, can block the urges to use drugs or drink alcohol, Winters said.

Croy said there are indeed drugs recommended by medical professionals to fight addiction, which could be beneficial.

But the problems of a suffering drug addict are much larger in scope, she said.

"They need housing options, they need jobs," Croy said. "These drugs often need to be taken for at least two years."

Croy has been a proponent of specialized court dockets in which a criminal offender, who may sometimes be a drug addict, goes through a stage of "intense probation."

The person charged would meet with the judge once a week where rewards and sanctions would likely be discussed.

"I believe my skills can administer the docket and make discretionary decisions on specialized dockets," Croy said.

She has experience with such programs during her time as a Sandusky County assistant prosecutor, she noted.

Croy said she will look to continue the specialized dockets already used in Ottawa County and perhaps expand the methodology if possible.

Both Croy and Winters have ideas for combating drug addiction in Ottawa County, as the November election may go a long way in deciding what methodologies are used.

Winters has begun implementing a drug court in which certain criminal offenders and parolees are forced to submit weekly drug tests, among other stringent conditions.

Croy said she would be open to continuing this program if she were elected, but perhaps tweaking and increasing the program's eligibility.

Winters has also been trying for years to garner support for a sober living house that would require residents to stay clean, above all else.

But potential tenants also would work while practicing basic societal functions, such as how to maintain a bank account and how to cook healthy food.

Their ideas for fighting drug abuse differ also, but the subject is clearly at the forefront of both their campaigns.

Winters fired Croy in 2012 when she worked under him as a court magistrate. Neither have been able to shed much light on the firing.

They seem to have dissenting opinions on the matter, since Croy said she still does not fully understand why she was fired.

Comments

grumpy

When will the judge meet with the addicts/ recovering addicts? Most jobs, don't take kindly to employees lleaving once a week to go to any meeting. Most judges wouldn't meet with folks after 6 or 7 pm. That part of her plan doesn't seem to be well thought out, if work is one of the things that she emphasizes. Weekly meeting with the judge might sound good... but in practice? As stated I just doubt many employers would happily have an employee leave for a time ( an hour maybe with travel time included) every week. Most jobs can't work around such a requirement.

indolent indiff...

she looses her job with the prosecutor for incompetence and then looses her magistrate job for lying. not what you would think of as a judge

Babo

I was wondering how she has the time to attend these seminars when she is supposed to be working. She is assigned the triple murder case in Sandusky County and she already let a key witness who had violated his probation avoid assisting the police and testifying by failing to ensure he was detained.

Also, she is "endorsed" by the same drug task officers who were found to have lied under oath (perjury a felony of the third degree) in order to obtain access to a suspect's home and seize pot. These same officers had a problem with drugs disappearing from evidence and incomplete drug inventories when she was an assistant prosecutor in Ottawa county and she had no problem with it.

Bodega

Croy is endorsed by everybody there is to endorse someone in Ottawa county. Democrats, republicans, the cops on drug task. the local police, the county police, cops in Elmore, cops in Marblehead, people who work with drug addicts, people who work for children's' services. All of them. Ask yourself, why? Not just the "crooked" cops that you refer to Babo... ALL OF THEM. It's because they know that Croy is honest (something our current judge is not) and they know what you apparently do not. I'm sure, Babo, you can find someone to hate on any list of supporters. That doesn't make your ridiculous conspiracy theories true.

Babo

I am referencing specific facts, while you are making broad and unsubstantiated statements that are not true.

It is undisputed that two drug task force officers lied in court and intentionally violated a citizen's rights. Both the trial court and the court of appeals found that the officers lied under oath. The men are employed by Ottawa County and none of their superiors (who endorse Croy) have seen fit to punish them for lying under oath.

Maybe you like Croy find it acceptable to lie under oath and do not hold law enforcement or government employees to high standards.

Here's an idea, let's drug test all of Croy's and Winter's endorsers and the one with the lower number of drug users gets the job.

Unassumer

loses. not looses. your shoelaces are loose. you lose.

Bodega

Croy was fired because she stood up for the morals and values of the people in Ottawa county. You all here seem to jump on corruption pretty quick, looks like you've missed the boat on this one.

Babo

She is a member of the bar of the State of Ohio and has a duty to file a grievance on Judge Winters if she was indeed fired in retaliation for standing up for integrity in the judiciary. There have been no reports that any grievance was filed on Judge Winters over her firing so one must conclude that her claims are baseless and that her firing was justified.

.

Nemesis

There is NO public official whose job it is to stand up for the morals and values of the people of the County. This is not a theocracy; it's a free country and it's not the job of the government to promote your morals and values. It's their SWORN job to stand up for the Constitution that specifically bars doing so.

Unassumer

I know there are many heroin abusers in Ottawa County (and beyond) but I am wondering how we can afford to institute all these programs for them and eliminate help for people not on drugs? And I have seen many get arrested for drugs only to get off with a slap on the wrist or go back time and time again without much punishment. I don't feel sorry for addicts. They got themselves into that predicament and I don't think taxpayers should help them get out. I know of one family in PC that the majority of the adults have been on heroin and have been in and out of jail for drugs and stealing and yet, they are still walking around, all living in the same house and their kids are not learning the right lessons. The jail time is short and they get out and do it all over again, all while maintaining how 'christian' they are. It's hypocritical at the least and a travesty at most. Actually they should move back to Willard so we don't have to deal with them.

Bodega

The current Ottawa county Judge has a "drug court" that isn't even certified. Probably no one cares about something boring like being certified to operate. But maybe if it was certified, the Judge would know that using taxpayer money to pay for heroin addicts to stay in local hotels where they sell drugs isn't right. There are a few angry hotel owners that had no idea they were being used like that. I'm sure that's great for tourism too.

Babo

All drug courts operate initially without certification as they go through the process. Also, your statements concerning the hotels and heroin addicts taken from Ms. Croy's opinion piece are based on her misrepresentations.

You need to be careful as making false statements about a judge on the internet in Ohio can get you indicted for intimidation.

Babo

The News Herald and News Messenger are reporting that Alexander Reitzel will avoid prison in the case involving Croy's political Svengali Chris Redfern's home. The newspapers servers are not responding or the link would be provided.

Bodega

News Herald said the kid pled guilty. Shocking.

Babo

Yes to what? He was overcharged initially because Redfern was the "victim". People will plead to lesser crimes even if they didn't do it to avoid prison and a court system where it's acceptable for government officials to lie under oath.

holysee

People should not fight wars while high on drugs or else you get the current situation of increasing the drug flow 40x of heroin because of fighting a war while high on drugs and high and mighty and high on fatasy war victories and homeland security terrorist hunting.
You start with drug number one which is alcohol. Who drives down the wrong side of the road besides drunks and the confused elderly?