DE Tracks Sale Of Drug Used In Methamphetamine - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

DE Tracks Sale Of Drug Used In Methamphetamine

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DOVER, Del. - The numbers are staggering. Meth-related arrests in the state of Delaware skyrocketed by nearly 75 percent from 2011 to 2012. But Tuesday, two laws signed by Governor Jack Markell are cracking down on home-meth labs and helping police track criminals.

"It's really scary to see more meth labs popping up. Recognizing how dangerous they can be and how dangerous the drug is, these two bills will provide more tools to law enforcement to try to get control of this problem," Governor Jack Markell said.

In 2011, police uncovered only one meth lab. In 2012, that number jumped to fifteen. In 2013, police have discovered 11 meth labs so far.

"It's very scary. I've got twin boys that are 17 years old. The fact that knowing that people can make that in their homes and put it on the streets, it's pretty scary as a parent," Edward Gotch of Dover said.

House Bill 28 makes it a class C felony to operate secret labs, and those convicted will have to pay for clean-up at the site.

"They've been known to have explosions in these labs because it's not controlled and it's a home-grown type of thing," District 9 Representative Rebecca Walker said.

State and federal laws already limit the amount of non-prescription pseudoephedrines or "PSE" consumers can buy - a key component in making meth. House Bill 130 makes it easier for police to curb "smurfing," where purchases are made at multiple stores to acquire illegal quantities.

Starting January 1, when you buy an over-the-counter drug with pseudoephedrine, you'll have to provide a government issued ID with your name, address and date of birth. Then the pharmacists and retailers will put that information into a national database that tracks PSE sales.

"It takes that from a written process to an electronic process," Delaware State Police Superintendent Colonel Nathaniel McQueen Jr. said.

This will give police the tools they need to curb production.

Information from the database will be given to state police on a weekly basis.

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