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Drug Abuse

NEWS
September 7, 2012 | By Barbara Boyer, Inquirer Staff Writer
Statistics tracked by the New Jersey Attorney General's Office suggest that use of the designer drugs known as bath salts and synthetic marijuana has significantly declined since the state recently banned them. Reports of bath salts to New Jersey's poison hotline have declined by 66 percent and synthetic marijuana by 33 percent, according to the Attorney General's Office. Exposure to bath salts was first reported to the state's poison control center in January 2011, with incidents increasing through the following April, when the state cracked down on the drug.
NEWS
August 30, 2012
Some urgency must be added to the investigation of the horrifying death of a Camden child who was decapitated by his mother before she took her own life. There should be no delay in implementing whatever additional steps the New Jersey Department of Children and Families could take to help it recognize when a parent who seems to be competent to care for a child isn't. Just as likely, of course, the investigation may find that no agency could have saved 2-year-old Zahree from his mother, Chevonne Thomas, who had a history of mental illness and drug abuse.
NEWS
August 26, 2012 | By Barbara Boyer, Inquirer Staff Writer
Child protection workers were preparing to close their case on a Camden mother reunited with her son when, on Wednesday, the woman decapitated the boy and then committed suicide, according to a state news release issued Friday. The New Jersey Department of Children and Families provided more information about Chevonne Thomas, 34, including details about her Nov. 28, 2010, arrest on a child endangerment charge when she first lost custody of son Zahree, who was 2 when he died. The release noted at least one drug relapse that caused the department to take the boy from Thomas a second time.
NEWS
August 25, 2012 | By Barbara Boyer, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Child protection workers were preparing to close their case on a Camden mother reunited with her son when, on Wednesday, the woman decapitated the boy and then committed suicide, according to a state news release issued Friday. The New Jersey Department of Children and Families provided more information about Chevonne Thomas, 34, including details about her Nov. 28, 2010, arrest on a child endangerment charge when she first lost custody of son Zahree, who was 2 when he died. The release noted at least one drug relapse that caused the department to take the boy from Thomas a second time.
NEWS
August 25, 2012 | By Barbara Boyer, Inquirer Staff Writer
An advocate for children said her organization would petition state records to review how child protection workers monitored a Camden mother who decapitated her son Wednesday before committing suicide. Nancy Parello, a spokeswoman for the nonprofit Advocates for Children of New Jersey, said serious questions emerged Wednesday from the state's initial response after Chevonne Thomas, 34, killed her 2-year-old, Zahree, less than three months after regaining custody. "When was the last time a caseworker saw the family?"
NEWS
August 24, 2012 | By Barbara Boyer, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
An advocate for children said her organization would petition state records to review how child protection workers monitored a Camden mother who decapitated her son Wednesday before committing suicide. Nancy Parello, a spokeswoman for the nonprofit Advocates for Children of New Jersey, said serious questions emerged Wednesday from the state's initial response after Chevonne Thomas, 34, killed her 2-year-old, Zahree, less than three months after regaining custody. "When was the last time a caseworker saw the family?"
NEWS
August 2, 2012 | By Greg Katz, Associated Press
LONDON - For more than two months, Hans Kristian Rausing, a son of a billionaire, acted as if everything was fine, even though the corpse of his wife, Eva, was decomposing in their luxury home in central London. He went about his routines as normal, and when friends or family asked about Eva he would give vague replies, never suggesting anything was awry. But the macabre pretense was dropped July 9 when London police stopped him for driving erratically and, after finding drugs, searched his home.
NEWS
July 5, 2012 | By Mike Stobbe, Associated Press
ATLANTA - Overdose deaths from powerful painkillers have been surging at an alarming rate in the United States, but here's a sliver of good news: The number blamed on methadone appears to have peaked. Still, methadone accounts for nearly one-third of prescription-painkiller deaths, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday. Methadone, known mainly for treating heroin addiction, is also prescribed for pain. Health officials say most of the overdose deaths are people who take it for pain - not heroin or drug addicts.
NEWS
June 6, 2012 | By Mari A. Schaefer and INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A typical drug deal for a college student looking to score illegally obtained prescription narcotics doesn't happen in a dark alley with sketchy characters. More likely, it is their roommate who offers up a couple pills from their own legally obtained medications. On Monday, administrators from area colleges met at Villanova University to discuss what they see as the fastest growing drug problem on campus, share information and develop strategies to educate students and parents.
NEWS
March 25, 2012 | By John P. Martin, Inquirer Staff Writer
The neighborhood that rings St. Jerome's Church in Northeast Philadelphia is flush with cops and firefighters, reliable Catholics in brick homes with tidy lawns, backyard slides, and a few front-door crucifixes. That was the backdrop last year for one of the more sordid clergy sex-abuse allegations to emerge in years. A grand jury report described a 10-year-old altar boy being confronted in St. Jerome's sacristy after Mass, ordered to strip, and engage in sex. Not once, but three times - by two different priests - over a year in the late 1990s.
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