Pubdate: Wed, 28 Sep 2005
Source: Keystone, The (PA)
Copyright: 2005 The Keystone
Author: Matthew J. Rhein Assistant News Editor
Bookmark: (Drug Education)
Bookmark: (D.A.R.E.)
Bookmark: (Students - United States)
Bookmark: (Cannabis)
Bookmark: (Cocaine)
Bookmark: (Heroin)
Bookmark: (Methamphetamine)


KUTZTOWN-Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett emphasized his
campaign against drug use Tuesday, Sept. 27 in Boehm 145. About 100
students from Criminal Justice, Psychology and Sociology classes
filled the lecture hall for his 11:00 a.m. speech, sponsored by KU's
Criminal Justice Association.

Corbett elaborated on why he focused on drug use, saying, "[Illegal
drugs] lead to about 60-70 percent of other crime."

Corbett explained the importance of educating students on drug abuse
and punishments for related crimes.

"Most [students] remember having D.A.R.E (Drug Abuse Resistance
Education) in fifth grade. But that was a long time ago. We have to
continue to reinforce drug education," said Corbett. He included his
idea of instituting additional drug education classes in middle and
high schools.

Corbett said that by educating students, the possibility for addiction
decreases. He reinforced the notion that marijuana is a gateway drug
and when "that high doesn't become enough, you turn to
meth[amphetamines] or heroin or cocaine."

Corbett cited an example of a man, Dennis "Dapper Don" Stepney of
Throop, Lackawanna County, who was arrested for possession of over 100
pounds of marijuana.

"He was making millions of dollars selling drugs. He could have been
making millions of dollars in a legitimate business," said Corbett.

Discussing his drug prevention plans seemed his strength, but Corbett
also told students other aspects of his job. According to Corbett, his
office has two main branches-consumer protection and criminal affairs.
The consumer protection branch covers issues such as price gauging;
most recently they're pursuing gas stations. The branch also protects
consumers from dishonest drug and insurance companies who overcharge.

The criminal section requires the most work and, as a result, is where
the majority of agents are employed. According to Corbett, in addition
to the 140 drug enforcement agents, approximately 100 agents deal with
criminal investigations.

Other areas Corbett and criminal investigators target are online
predators, organized crime and environmental issues.

"The number one reason for government is to instill order, to prevent
chaos. My role as Attorney General is to enforce that government and
to ensure public safety," he said. "As the Attorney General you don't
have to look for work, it finds you." 
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