HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - Madison County Jail officials are battling a new war on drugs. Inmates have found a clever new way to sneak contraband into jail.
The problem is all contained in a letter addressed to a loved one. It looks like your average love letter. But if inspected closely, some of these letters contain a prescription drug to treat opioid addicts called Suboxone.
This drug can be helpful in controlled doses but could also be potentially dangerous if taken in the wrong dose.
Jail officials are sending a strong message to put a stop to this. Investigator Brent Patterson warns that .if you get caught you be charged with a felony.
“We’re going to catch you and when we do we’re going to put you in jail,” said Patterson.
Patterson said they look at mail very thoroughly before it comes in and are catching it. He said they’ve arrested and charged two individuals for mailing it into the jail within the past few weeks.
Suboxone strips are orange and about the size of a breath strip.
One person who sent a letter was sneaky, hoping the drug would blend in with the orange envelope, making it hard to detect.
Patterson says he isn’t alone in the war on drugs getting into jails. He said he learned at a conference last week with 200 different jailers that they’re having the same problem.
To learn more about Suboxone, we talked to Clete Wetli at Huntsville Recovery to find out more about the drug. he said if it isn’t used properly it’s dangerous.
“It contains buprenorphine and naloxone and if taken in a large dose it can be abused and risking so many health issues,” said Wetli.
In the meantime, Patterson and jail officials are waging the war on drugs.
“This is the important part. If you get caught and get charged with a felony, at the end of the day we don’t want it here,” Patterson said.
Patterson says there are always new ways addicts will try and get contraband in the jail. This is one he says seems to be trending.
Huntsville Recovery is working with area judges and Gov. Kay Ivey to get medication-assisted treatment into the jails to help combat the problem of inmates sneaking drugs like Suboxone into the jail, which ultimately will do more harm than good.