San Diego: Still Addicted to Meth, Part 2
“We are not going to be able to tackle this problem through law enforcement efforts alone. This is a community problem. This is a health epidemic problem that we all need to come together and put resources toward.”
~ Laura Duffy, San Diego’s U.S. Attorney
Approximately 30 years ago, San Diego was known as the “meth capital of the world”. Today, a little more than a generation later, it is once again “Ground Zero” for a resurgent meth threat of historic proportions. Vast amounts of cheap, powerful methamphetamine are flooding into the region after being mass-produced in superlabs owned by Mexican drug cartels.
San Diego is particularly at-risk because of its unique geography. Most meth smuggled in from Mexico comes through the San Ysidro Port of Entry, the busiest land border crossing in the entire Western Hemisphere.
In other words, after the problem of local meth production was addressed by new laws, it evolved, and became the even bigger problem of meth smuggling.
How Much Meth is Reaching the San Diego Area?
“Man arrested after Border Patrol finds 144 pounds of methamphetamine in his pickup truck near Temecula” (September 10, 2019)
“Border agents discover meth hidden in battery chargers” (September 9)
“Border agents find meth in gas tank” (September 5)
To get a feel for just how bad the meth smuggling problem in the San Diego area really is, all you have to do is look at the local headlines. Almost every day, there is a new story about another drug bust. In 2013, local law enforcement agencies confiscated over 13,000pounds of meth. But by 2018, meth seizures grew to more than 45,000 pounds.
Take one 24-hour period earlier this year, for example. From April 17 to April 18, 348 pounds of meth were confiscated at various checkpoints around San Diego County.
Other relevant statistics:
- 1997: The San Diego County Medical Examiner’s office listed meth as a contributing or primary factor in 60
- 2018: That number of meth-related deaths had ballooned to 318.
- That is a 470%
- 1997-2018” Over half of deaths involving methamphetamine also tested positive for another substance, such as alcohol, heroin, or fentanyl.
- Every 23 hours, a San Diego resident dies of meth-related causes.
- La Mesa, El Cajon, Escondido, and Oceanside have the highest rates of per-capita meth-related deaths.
- The age range for fatal meth overdose victims ranges from 14 to 78, with an average of 46 years old,
- 2018: 1001 people in San Diego County faced federal charges related to the possession of methamphetamine.
- 1 out of every 3 people in publicly-funded treatment programs is there because of meth
- The average age of a meth user is 25 years old.
What Does This Mean to YOU?
As bad as the previous meth problem of the 1980s and 1990s was, this time, it’s even worse. The glut of cheap-yet-powerful meth makes it easier for users to get hooked. Even so-called casual users can quickly get trapped in a downward spiral of dependence, addiction, overdose, and other negative consequences that can be life-altering or even life-threatening.
If you live in Southern California and are struggling with an addiction to methamphetamine or other drugs, you can get the specialized individual treatment you need at Lasting Recovery, the top outpatient drug rehab in San Diego.
To safely and successfully regain your sobriety, contact Lasting Recovery TODAY.