In York, Maine the Police Department’s drug recognition expert (DRE), a professional is called in when alcohol has been ruled out as the cause of a driver’s operating under the influence charge is seeing less drunk driving and more drug driving. While Breathalyzer’s are a great tool to test blood alcohol levels over the legal limit of .08, it cannot test for other substances. That is why Officer Christopher Gosselin gets called in when they eliminate that is isn’t alcohol causing the drivers inability to operate a vehicle. Prescription pain medications such as Percocet and Oxycontin can impair driving, and the abuse of these drugs has become widespread. The only way to check if there are drugs in the individuals system is through a urine sample that is sent to the Department of Health and Human Services lab, and the results can take days to come back.
Since September Officer Gosselin has been the designated drug recognition expert at the station. He gets called in only when the suspect’s blood alcohol limit is less than .08, but the suspect has been charged with an OUI by the arresting officer who determined probable cause through a field test and statements taken at the scene. The drug recognition expert (DRE) program is not new, Gosselin said, having gotten its start in the late 1970’s. In York, Maine they are thankful for this program, it is getting individuals off the road before they hurt themselves or innocent people.
Many families and people with addiction suffer on an everyday basis, they battle the constant urge to use the substance they have become dependent on, and for many families, they are often struggling with a way to understand and help their loved family member. That is why Seabrook offers the Family Matrix Program. It is a 3 day family experience that allows families to begin to heal and strengthen the family bonds strained by addiction.