Pubdate: Sun, 10 Feb 2002
Source: New Haven Register (CT)
Copyright: 2002, New Haven Register
Contact:  http://www.zwire.com/site/news.cfm?brd=1281
Details: http://www.mapinc.org/media/292
Author: Associated Press

BUSH NIECE POSTPONES TRIAL, ENTERS DRUG REHAB PROGRAM

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Noelle Bush, the governor's daughter who was accused of 
prescription drug fraud, has been admitted to a drug treatment program, her 
lawyer said.

Bush, 24, a daughter of Gov. Jeb Bush and niece of President Bush, will 
spend whatever time is needed in the treatment program before returning to 
Tallahassee to face the charge, attorney Peter Antonacci said Friday.

She waived her right to a speedy trial and probably will be sent to drug 
court after her release from treatment, said Leon County State Attorney 
Willie Meggs.

Antonacci would not disclose the location of the treatment center.

Bush was arrested at a pharmacy drive-through window Jan. 29 on charges of 
trying to buy Xanax with a fraudulent prescription. Authorities said she 
posed as a doctor and called in the phony prescription after suffering a 
panic attack.

Drug prescription fraud is a felony that carries a maximum penalty of five 
years in prison and a $5,000 fine on conviction.

First-time offenders often are sent to drug court, and must attend meetings 
and pass periodic tests. If a person successfully graduates from drug 
court, criminal charges are dismissed and the defendant is left without a 
record.

Xanax is a sedative commonly prescribed for anxiety.

It is "fairly easy" to become physically or psychologically addicted to 
Xanax, said Gail Dixon, a director of the Drug Information Service Center 
Village, a nonprofit substance abuse treatment center in Tallahassee.

She said Xanax, one of the top prescription drugs diverted for illicit use, 
can make significant changes in a person's physiological and psychological 
functioning.
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