The woman’s symptoms continued to escalate into severe drug psychosis, paranoia, and she ran onto a busy roadway in the presence of police. Photo: Unsplash

The woman’s symptoms continued to escalate into severe drug psychosis, paranoia, and she ran onto a busy roadway in the presence of police. Photo: Unsplash

Trail RCMP: Drug decriminalization leading to extraordinary calls

Adults 18+ are not subject to criminal charges for possession of up to 2.5 gm of certain drugs

Police are dealing with some extraordinary situations in the new era of drug decriminalization, says Trail RCMP Sgt. Mike Wicentowich.

His comments follow an unusual call to the Trail RCMP detachment Friday night.

Wicentowich says a distressed woman called police, alleging she had been sold “the wrong kind of drug” while visiting Trail.

An officer located the woman, a 36 year-old from Nelson, downtown on Bay Avenue.

“The woman told the officer that she believed she had purchased cocaine; however, she received another kind of drug instead and was not used to its effects,” Wicentowich explains. “The woman’s symptoms continued to escalate into severe drug psychosis, paranoia, and running onto a busy roadway in the presence of the officer.”

The officer took the woman into custody and transported her to Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital for medical treatment.

“Though it may appear obvious to most, drugs purchased from illegitimate sources are dangerous and can lead to death,” adds Wicentowich.

The detachment reports that drug investigations dropped from 22 to nine (-13) in the first quarter of 2023.

Wicentowich attributes this number drop as a reflection of the new drug decriminalization policy enacted in B.C., rather than actual decreased illicit drug use.

As of Jan. 31, adults 18 and older in B.C. are not subject to criminal charges for the possession of a cumulative total of up to 2.5 grams of certain otherwise-illegal drugs for personal use: opioids, including fentanyl and heroin; crack and powder cocaine; methamphetamine; and MDMA (ecstasy).

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