The recent news that dozens of medical professionals across the U.S. had been charged for allegedly participating in a scheme to illegally prescribe millions of pain medications rocked the medical world. Among those facing federal charges are doctors, nurses and pharmacists, news reports stated.
Chattanooga’s Lipsey Trucking is not a household name, but along with Lipsey Logistics (its sister company), it owns dozens of 18-wheelers and employs 200 people. Owner Joseph Lipsey III was recently arrested on drug-related charges in Colorado.
If you drive about 200 miles northwest of Chattanooga, you will arrive in Only, Tennessee. There are not a lot of fancy restaurants or clubs in the town of just over 2,000 residents, but they do have the Turney Center Industrial Complex, a medium level security prison.
In last year’s Democratic primary for the Tennessee House District 28 seat, Brandon Woodruff came in a respectable third with about 16 percent of the vote. The former candidate did not fare nearly as well in a recent encounter with the Chattanooga Police Department.
The opioid crisis has hit Tennessee particularly hard. In 2016, our state saw nearly 1,200 deaths caused by opioid overdoses. Our overdose rate is a staggering 18 deaths per 100,000 people—much higher than the national average of 13 deaths per 100,000 people.
Tennessee law enforcement agencies are determined to crack down on drug trafficking and sales in the state. As a result, people from all walks of life are getting arrested and charged with serious drug crimes.
Authorities in Tennessee announced that they took three people into custody after an incident at the Fairfield Inn on November 12. On that date at about 10 a.m., police searched a room in which the three defendants were staying. The search revealed about a kilo of methamphetamine in addition to Xanax and marijuana. Authorities also said that there was about $30,000 in cash that was believed to be the result of other drug transactions.
A Tennessee man is facing a raft of felony charges after allegedly attacking a woman on the night of Nov. 11. The 23-year-old Bristol resident is accused of strangling the woman and holding a loaded handgun to her head. Reports indicate that he is being detained at the Sullivan County Jail on a bond of $250,000 and has been charged with attempted murder, methamphetamine possession with the intent to distribute, using a firearm in the commission of a felony, domestic vandalism, reckless endangerment and aggravated kidnapping.
Earlier this year, the Drug Enforcement Administration tipped off law enforcement in Nashville about a suspicious shipment arriving on a passenger flight. A scan of a 22-year-old woman's luggage at her point of departure in October revealed what appeared to be packages of marijuana.
There were 659,700 people taken into custody for marijuana offenses in the United States in 2017. Of those, 599,282 were taken into custody for being in possession of the substance. This was an increase from 587,516 in 2016, and there are calls to reduce the amount of time and energy spent by law enforcement focusing on those who use the drug in Tennessee and other states where it has not been legalized.