In early September, Hurricane Dorian churned through the Atlantic along the East Coast of the United States, bringing some unexpected results along with it. In Cocoa Beach, Florida, beachgoers at Paradise Beach Park in Melbourne found a total of 15 kilos of cocaine that had washed up on the shore. Officials warned that the $300,000 worth of cocaine on the beach was unsafe and should not be handled. Police made it clear that the cocaine was taken by federal agents and would be destroyed.
Cocaine Addiction in Central Florida
According to the Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association, adolescent cocaine use in Florida only declined by 0.4% between 2016 and 2017. The number of deaths from cocaine use increased from 1,337 in 2013 to 3,129 in 2017. Service providers in Central Florida reported the highest rates of cocaine deaths statewide. Many people in Florida who are addicted to cocaine are addicted to two more drugs.
Florida cocaine laws categorize the sale, purchase, delivery, import, manufacturing or possession of 28 grams or more of cocaine as a first-degree felony. The penalty is three years in prison and a fine of $50,000. Increased quantities result in increased penalties. The Drug Enforcement Administration’s 2018 Drug Threat Assessment explains that a significant portion of cocaine in the United States comes from Columbia and is increasingly laced with fentanyl and other opioids.
When cocaine is laced with fentanyl, it can become even more addictive and deadly. This represents a public health crisis, as the source, quantity and actual contents of these drugs are frequently unknown and can have unexpected health consequences. Any kind of drug that contributes to the opioid crisis catches the attention of lawmakers nationwide. Cocaine addiction has, unfortunately, not diminished significantly and continues to be a challenge for many people throughout the state.
Treating Cocaine Addiction in Central Florida
Drug treatment programs in Florida are available for people who struggle with cocaine addiction. Drug rehab centers in Central Florida like Orlando Recovery Center can provide a continuum of care that includes medical and mental health support for addiction recovery. Detox, drug replacement therapies, counseling and group sessions are all part of a cohesive recovery program. If you or someone you know is addicted to cocaine or any other drug, it is important to get help before it is too late. Reach out Orlando Recovery Center to learn more about comprehensive programs and services.
Florida Alcohol and Drug Abuse Association. “Patterns and Trends of Substance Use Within and Across the Regions of Florida.” April 2019. Accessed September 19, 2019.
Gallop, J.D. “Hurricane Dorian: 15 kilos of cocaine wash ashore; police tell beachcombers to be alert.” USA Today, September 3, 2019. Accessed September 19, 2019.
Online Sunshine. “The 2019 Florida Statutes Drug Abuse Prevention and Control 893.135.” 2019. Accessed September 19, 2019.
Quesada, Michelle. “Cocaine making a deadly comeback in Florida, according to drug officials.” WPTV, January 1, 2019. Accessed September 19, 2019.
U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration. “2018 National Drug Threat Assessment.” October 2018. Accessed September 19, 2019.