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Officers: Opioids slow to supplant meth as source of drug crime

11.27.2017 – Rudi Keller, Columbia Daily Tribune

While opioid addiction has grabbed headlines in recent years, for some law enforcement and treatment officials in Central Missouri, methamphetamine use remains a major problem.

And in some counties, it is the biggest problem.

“I could count on one hand the heroin arrests the last 10 years,” said Richard Miller, chief deputy for Saline County. “Methamphetamine is the worst drug issue. Meth drives most of the crime in Saline County.”

In 2016, there were 207 methamphetamine lab seizures in Missouri, according to figures from the Missouri State Highway Patrol. That is down from a peak of 2,114 lab seizures in 2011, when Missouri had the most labs seized nationally. In Central Missouri, six meth labs were seized in Boone County in 2016, two in Randolph County and one in Cooper County.

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