FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 07, 2010


More than 300 pharmacies connected to new database to help Missouri law enforcement fight meth

Training sessions across state for law enforcement and pharmacists on use of new high-tech tool will begin Nov. 1

The Missouri Department of Public Safety today announced that 343 Missouri pharmacies are connected to a new database that will help law enforcement stop methamphetamine dealers by cutting them off from pseudoephedrine, the cold medicine that is also a key ingredient in meth.

"This new tracking system will help law enforcement curb the purchase of the necessary precursor and assist in tracking people who are cooking this illegal and very dangerous drug," said Colonel Ron Replogle, Superintendent of the Missouri State Highway Patrol. "The Patrol is committed to eradicating methamphetamine laboratories from Missouri, and we will work quickly and seamlessly with other law-enforcement agencies to implement this system."

The database will allow pharmacists and law enforcement to determine at the point of sale whether a buyer has gone from store to store buying large amounts of pseudoephedrine as a way to circumvent legal limits. The system also would send an alert to law enforcement about an attempted illegal purchase.

The system would allow people who legitimately need the cold medicine to purchase it, but will block sales to people trying to build an inventory to make methamphetamine.

In November, regional training classes will be held at eight sites around the state for law enforcement officers and pharmacy personnel to instruct them on how the system works. The first session will take place Nov. 1, and the final session will be on Nov. 12.  Trainings will take place in Springfield, West Plains, Cape Girardeau, St. Charles, Jefferson City, Kirksville, St. Joseph and Independence.  Web-based training also will be available.

Colonel Replogle said the Highway Patrol's Division of Drug and Crime Control field officers, including all officers assigned to regional drug task forces across Missouri, will receive training on the new database.



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