Association of Prosecuting AttorneysMay 01, 2012
Ohio County Using Funds Seized from Drug Dealers to Support Teen Drug Prevention Program
NEW CARLISLE - Cash seized from drug dealers is funding a program aimed at teen drug abuse prevention. The Clark County Prosecutor's Office and Cole's Warriors, a local drug prevention and education group, have teamed up to offer teens and their parents the chance to sign up for a free, voluntary random drug testing program. "I just think it's just a great tool that allows parents to be a little more aware of what's going on in their kid's life and also to communicate about an issue that sometimes is hard to talk about," said Andy Wilson, Clark County prosecutor. The program has cost about $2,000 so far, all funded from a law enforcement trust account that is made up of funds seized from drug dealers, said Wilson. With next year's enrollment push, prizes like flat screen TVs - also seized from drug dealers - will be raffled to students who sign up. "What I love is we fund the program using money taken from drug dealers," he said. This school year, Tecumseh High School became the first school to sign on for the program. That allows students who have enrolled to be randomly selected to be tested at the school during the day. The results are sent directly to the student's parents and are never seen by educators or law enforcement officials. "What I really liked about this was that the school was not involved at all, so there was no punitive connotation," said Danielle Smoot, director of Cole's Warriors. "We're not looking to prosecute kids, we're not looking to get them in trouble or kick them off the football team."