Kentucky rates for abuse and dependence on illicit drugs has consistently been above the national rates. In recent years there have been increases in treatment admissions mentioning use of cocaine, marijuana and opiates other than heroin. There has also been increases in admissions mentioning more the use of more than one substance. With the overwhelming availability of illicit drugs in Kentucky it is of no surprise that drug only admissions have tripled since 1997. In addition diverted pharmaceuticals such as Lorcet, Lortab and OxyContin continue to pose a major threat throughout Kentucky, as well as the rapidly increasing number of methamphetamine laboratories.
Cocaine Abuse and Crime Increase in Kentucky
In the central and southeastern areas of Kentucky cocaine continues to be readily available. The majority of the cocaine within the state is transported from the Southwest Border by Mexican drug trafficking organizations. Cocaine accounts for over 40% of Federally sentenced drug offenders in Kentucky.
Heroin is rare in Kentucky, and when encountered tends to be in user quantities. Known sources of Heroin encountered in Kentucky are supplied from Atlanta, Georgia or Illinois. In 2006 heroin accounted for 1.4% of treatment admissions in Kentucky.
Methamphetamine Abuse Remains Widespread Throughout Kentucky
The widespread availability of methamphetamine in central and southeastern Kentucky causes concern throughout the state. The majority of meth in Kentucky is supplied by Mexican drug trafficking organizations, primarily transported from the Southwest Border. During 2007 the DEA, state and local law enforcement of Kentucky reported 261 methamphetamine laboratory incidents. In addition 32 children in Kentucky were affected by meth labs, and there were also 197 methadone related deaths during 2006.
Prescription Drugs are Increasing in Availability
One of the largest drug problems in Kentucky is the abuse of prescription drugs. The availability of these drugs are very high. During the 2005-2006 school year there were 117 violations for the distribution of prescription drugs.
Ecstasy & Other Club Drugs are Popular Among the Youth
Most of the club drugs in Kentucky are found in close proximity colleges and universities. MDMA, Ketamine, GHB and LSD continue to remain readily available, and used by teenagers as well as young adults. The majority of the club drugs are transported through U.S. Mail from known sources of Miami, Cincinnati, Atlanta and Los Angeles.
Kentucky is Known to be one of the Leading States for the Production of Marijuana
Kentucky is a major source of domestically grown marijuana, and in 2007 ranked second for domestic marijuana production. Kentucky had a total of 64,869 marijuana plants eradicated in 2007. Kentucky cultivates much more marijuana than can be consumed within the state, therefore it is generally transported to the Midwest as well as the East Coast.