A wealthy donor to the Democratic Party is facing a federal charge relating fatal drug overdoses in his house. Stunning new allegations reveal that he paid men not less than 10 to use illicit drugs for his pleasure. Protesters have been calling for his incarceration since 2017 when a young man was found dead in his house. Cause of death? A drug overdose.
The 65-year-old is a well-known activist in California politics. He donated to former US president Barack Obama. He also made donations to former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s campaigns. Now, if convicted, he faces a potential maximum sentence of five years and eight months in state prison.
How did such a prominent man end up facing drug-related charges? What is the drug he is accused of luring people to overdose on? What is its abuse and addiction situation in America? What hope do people with addiction problems have? The following is an exploration of the facts that can best answer these questions.
Despite two men having died in his house, Buck continued preying on homeless men. He, among other things, assaulted them sexually and injected them with lethal drug doses. The latest case involves a man who overdosed but escaped Buck’s house to seek help.
The earliest possible case of misconduct can be traced back to 2017. Due to insufficient evidence, authorities could not charge Buck with a connection to Gemmel Moore’s death. 26-year-old Moore was found dead due to a drug overdose in Buck’s Laurel Avenue apartment.
Protesters accused Buck of Moore’s death due to, among other things, a journal that Moore had left behind. In the journal, he blamed Buck for his drug addiction. “Ed Buck is the one to thank, he gave me my first injection of Crystal meth”, he wrote.
Furthermore, Buck’s apartment was littered with drug paraphernalia when Moore’s dead body was discovered. The notable things included 24 hypothermic needles, glass pipes and sex toys. Paramedics found Moore lying naked on a mattress in the living room according to the coroner’s report.
Moore’s mother filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Buck. As the LA County District Attorney failed to prosecute the prominent man, she had to press. She alleged that he injected her son with a lethal dose of crystal meth. Following Buck’s arrest, she has now thanked her son’s supporters for keeping up with justice protests. In a twitter video, she said, “I am so happy. I knew this day was going to come.”
She had earlier questioned the authorities’ dedication to convicting Buck. She cited his race and political affluence as the challenges she thought hindered her case against him. Other than being a longtime political donor, the 65-year-old white male had a stint in politics. He once sought a West Hollywood City Council seat and is well known in LGBTQ political circles.
Numerous people who have been holding various justice protests against Buck are also now contented. Some of them, however, feel like it has taken a long period while he was left to hurt people. Jasmyne Cannick, one of the protests’ leaders could not hide her dissatisfaction. “We have brought them plenty of witnesses over the years,” she said. She also revealed how the witnesses feared being exposed.
The majority of people who suffered under the hands of Buck were seemingly helpless. A 22-page federal criminal complaint unsealed on Thursday revealed such details. According to the complaint, homeless men, who were his most victims, called him Dr. Kevorkian. He accessed them from West Hollywood’s Plummer Park, which is just less than a mile from his home.
He used shelter, money, and drugs to lure homeless men into his residence, as prosecutors revealed. In his home, at a position of power, he manipulates his victims to participate in his sexual fetishes. The fetishes include offering and injecting dangerously lethal doses of narcotics to his victims.
Ten men told investigators that he had paid them to dress in skimpy underwear and use drugs for his amusement. Several of them revealed how they had lost consciousness after taking a drink that he had offered. On waking up, they would find him injecting drugs in their arms without their will. Perhaps that is the fate which befell the two individuals who died of drug overdoses in his residence.
Buck’s latest victim was lucky to survive a possible overdose and even sought medical assistance. The man, identified as Joe Doe, had gone to Buck’s house on September 4 as prosecutors reveal. Buck then ‘personally and intentionally’ administered a large dose of methamphetamine. Prosecutors further reveal that the man left to seek medical assistance fearing an overdose.
On September 11, he returned and Buck injected him with ‘two precariously large’ doses of methamphetamine. Prosecutors says Buck stopped the man from seeking help on that day. Eventually, Joe escaped Buck’s apartment and called 911 from a nearby gas station. He was taken to hospital and survived after swift medical attention.
LA County Sherriff arrested Buck following Joe’s encounters with him. However, authorities have been keeping tabs with him since Moore’s case. The death of another man at Buck’s house in January fueled the criminal investigations. The 55-year-old Timothy Dean was also declared dead due to accidental methamphetamine overdose, as was Moore.
After Dean’s death, Buck denied any wrongdoing. His lawyer argued that Dean had consumed the drugs before he got to Buck’s house. He further stated that Dean never consumed drugs at Buck’s residence and as such Buck was innocent.
Prosecutors are currently seeking to get Buck convicted for the two earlier deaths. As they contend, “his behavior has not stopped”. They argue that his behavior is predatory and devoid of regard for human life. It is their basis for seeking his bail to be set at $4 million. They call Buck a dangerous and violent sexual predator who targets the homeless and those battling addiction.
Should Buck be convicted for the charges he faces, he could go to state prison. The charges attract a minimum jail time of five years and eight months. However, the methamphetamine overdoses are just part of numerous other cases that have been evident in the US.There has been a serious drug epidemic in the US which has only worsened in recent years. Methamphetamine makes the list of the top killer drugs. Its overdose deaths have increased 18-fold over the last decade. What is this drug and how has it become a source of sorrow across American families and communities?
Methamphetamine is a powerful and highly addictive stimulant that acts on the central nervous system. It is commonly referred to as meth, ice, blue, and crystal as well as a host of other street names. Its most occurring form is a white, odorless, bitter-tasting crystalline powder which readily dissolves in alcohol and water.Its origins can be traced to the early 20 th century. It was synthesized from its parent drug, amphetamine. Its original uses included within nasal decongestants and bronchial inhalers. Just like amphetamine, it causes reduced appetite, increased talkativeness, and a sense of euphoria. However, contrary to amphetamine, methamphetamine can get into the brain if consumed in larger amounts.Its tendency to get into the brain makes it more potent as a stimulant. Its effects also last longer and are more damaging to the central nervous system. Such are some of the characteristics that have led to its widespread abuse.The US Drug Enforcement Administration classifies methamphetamine as a schedule 2 drug and is a controlled substance. This makes it legally available only through a non-refillable prescription. Medically, it might be used in the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Also, rare and limited prescriptions of methamphetamine might be offered for weight-loss treatment.Meth abuse in the US started in the 1960s when its injectable form was introduced. At the time, it was produced by experimenting and lowly-equipped chemists. Its distribution was done by motorcycle gangs and its abuse dropped significantly after the 1970 controlled substances act. Mexican drug cartels entered the trade in the early 1980s causing a spike in its production and abuse.By the early 1990s, meth use over the West Coast skyrocketed leading to a surge in the number of addictions. This was caused by increased production of purer meth. By 2006, the UN estimated that the US had more than 1.4 million meth users. A 2017 National Survey on Drug Use and Health indicated the scope of the current meth epidemic.The survey indicated that 964,000 individuals aged 12 and above had a meth use disorder that year. That same year, 10,333 individuals died from meth-related overdoses. It is particularly a drug of choice for most people who cannot afford cocaine, heroin, and opioids. Its abuse is also prevalent because it can be smoked, injected or also consumed orally.
Meth is said to trigger dependency faster than a majority of other illicit drugs. It is also one of the most difficult drugs to quit permanently. How does it work on the brain? It triggers the release of ‘happy’ hormones. In addition to dopamine, meth also forces the brain to release norepinephrine, also known as adrenaline. As a result, one experiences a rush, followed by a high.It induces a powerful euphoria that tempts a first user to use it again. It soon starts rewiring the decision-making sections of the brain. While one may consciously decide to use it for the first few times, the decision soon becomes involuntary. This happens after its decisions have moved to the hindbrain, where involuntary actions like blinking are controlled.
Meth addiction can kick in so fast after a very short period. A meth user starts to think that they have to stay on the habit to stay alive. The user might spiral into a binge, where they become intensely hyperactive. In the state, that they use more methamphetamine to trigger and maintain the initial euphoric high. However, this only increases one’s tolerance and makes the high unattainable.Over time, the user will stop feeling high and instead experience ‘tweaking’. The user feels unease and emptiness. Most people testify that this stage causes them to lose their identity. Family, social obligations and professional obligations become less important as the urge to succeed is depleted. One focuses their energy, attention, and time on acquiring meth, which has now taken over their lives.
Some of the short-term effects of methamphetamine addiction include:
Over the long-term methamphetamine addiction can cause:
One of the more popular long term effects of methamphetamine addiction is the “meth mouth”. It is characterized by tooth loss, tooth decay, acid erosion, tooth fracture, and numerous other dental issues.Meth users commonly combine it with other drugs to elicit certain psychological reactions including a severe high. This can be very fatal and caused an increased risk of overdose.
The common drugs combined with meth include:
Some of the most common symptoms of meth addiction include:
The goal of detox is to clear it from the body while managing its withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal causes numerous people to relapse whenever they try quitting the drug. It is important for detoxification to be monitored by experienced rehabilitation professionals. This is to ensure that any challenges are addressed promptly and the transition eased.
Inpatient detoxification is especially important for individuals with severe depression or suicidal thoughts. Meth can lead to more intense and longer depression periods. One may also experience irritability, anxiety, aggressiveness, long periods of sleep and intense cravings.
Due to the tendency for psychosis to develop, medical treatment should also be offered. Psychosis is characterized by intense hallucinations and delusions. Antipsychotic medications are essential for individuals experiencing this condition.
Therapy allows one to overcome the psychological and social aspects associated with addiction. At times, the addiction problem may be coupled with mental health disorders. Such might be hard to treat with medicine alone which raises the need for several therapies. Some of the most common therapies include:
Cognitive behavioral therapy(CBT)
CBT was originally designed for alcohol addiction treatment. However, it evolved to be used for other substance abuse treatments, including meth addiction. A 2014 study revealed the positive outcomes the treatment program had on individuals with meth abuse issues.This program teaches individuals to identify and correct problematic thoughts and behaviors that trigger substance abuse. It also teaches them abstinence strategies and tricks to improve self-control. One of the most common elements of CBT involves an exploration of the effects of meth addiction. The program also involves recognition and avoidance of high-risk situations and cravings monitoring.
This popular meth treatment method involves patients getting rewards for abstinence. The rewards are offered after abstinence confirmation through rug testing. A 2010 study showed that incentives have a way of keeping people within the treatment program. In the study, 55% of the individuals who signed up for an intensive-based program stayed for 12 weeks.In the same study, only 39% of individuals in a traditional treatment program without incentives stayed that long. As such, researchers concluded that contingency management is more effective in meth addiction treatment.
This normally involves a mixture of several evidence-based therapies to improve the chances of a patient’s recovery. Individual, family, and group counseling are some of the most common elements of this model. Family education and relapse prevention are key aspects that aid in full meth addiction recovery.
Ed Buck was recently arrested and accused of running a drug house. Prosecutors want him convicted for the deaths of two men who died of meth overdoses in his house. Although his lawyer insists on his innocence, he has a history of drug and sexual misconduct. He has in the past paid men to have sex and drugs with him. He then injects them with lethal drug doses without their will.Ed Buck’s habits may have contributed to meth overdose deaths of two Black-American men. He may have evaded justice due to his immense political connections. His meth abuse behavior exemplifies the prevalent epidemic in the US. Meth is one of the main killer illicit drugs since the 1960s. Its addiction and overdose rates have significantly spiked in the past decade.Methamphetamine reduces an individual’s ability to manage its consumption. Soon enough dependency kicks in followed by addiction. An addicted individual neglects other life responsibilities and quests to pursue its acquisition and use. Nonetheless, addiction recovery is possible. It starts with detoxification followed by a host of effective therapies. It is a long-term process because meth sticks to and alters the brain structure significantly. Family and friends play a vital role in recovery by offering encouragement and support. Visit Addiction Helpline America today if you or a loved one is struggling with addiction.