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How can Specialty Courts in Nevada help drug addicts?

Nevada, like all other states in our nation, is experiencing an opioid crisis. Opioids are highly addictive drugs. For some people, their addiction to opioids is so severe that it will lead them to obtain opioid pain relievers without a legal prescription or even seek out illegal substances, such as heroin or fentanyl. Unfortunately, possessing drugs through such means is illegal and could lead to criminal charges.

However, is it really best to simply "throw the book" at those convicted of drug possession, locking them away for years in jail? Some people would say that those addicted to drugs need the chance to be rehabilitated, rather than just punished. In fact, Nevada has Specialty Courts that aim to stop the cycle of drug addiction and the crimes associated with drug addiction.

The laws regarding Specialty Courts and drug crimes can be found in Nevada Revised Statutes §176.0613. Under this law, Specialty Courts are programs established to oversee, test and treat those who the court has deemed abuse drugs. They are an alternative to prison for those convicted of non-violent drug abuse crimes. They require regular drug testing and appearances in court, along with programs to treat addiction.

So, if a person is charged with a non-violent drug crime, such as mere possession, they may want to develop a defense strategy that allows them to qualify for Nevada's Specialty Court program if they are convicted or plead guilty, rather than being incarcerated. People addicted to drugs need help overcoming their addiction. The law recognizes this. Through Specialty Courts, it is hoped that the cycle of possessing illegal drugs, getting caught, serving a sentence and then being released only to commit the same crime again will be broken.

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