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356518 tn?1322267242

Narcotic presciption law... PLEASE READ!

This is outragous!
I thought it would be crucial information for us to know though.
It is really terrible what happened to this person. I do not want this to happen to any of you here so please keep this in mind.


There needs to be a law requiring labeling stating that all prescribed narcotic prescriptions must be kept in their original prescribed bottles at all times!

I currently always keep a day or two's worth of all my medication (non-narcotic & narcotic) mixed together in one pill bottle and keep it on me in my purse.  To me it is easier, than keeping two or three large bottles of narcotic medications in my purse, which could easily be lost or stolen.  At home, I keep a weeks worth in those daily medication carriers, because I lock the rest of my narcotics up in a fire proof safe.  This also keeps unknown people in my house from getting to them along with my 5 yr old daughter.

Recently, I went on a trip for a week to visit my father out of state where he was working.  I had my mixed medication bottle in my purse, and a weeks worth of medication in their bottles packed in my suit cases, which were in the back of my car that I was driving.  I left the rest home, since I just got a month's supply and I didn't want to take a chance of them being lost or stolen. Also a friend told me he was arrested while going away for a week and he had his full months prescription on him, so they got him on intent to sell or distribute dangerous controlled substances, because the cop said he did not need a full month's worth of medication for a week's trip! (What happened to keeping the medication together in their prescribed bottle?)  So anyway, I was pulled over for speeding during my drive up to where I was going.  The cop didn't search my car, but went through my purse and saw the medication bottle, which he opened.  He asked me what all the pills were, and I was completely honest with him.  I also told him the prescription bottles were packed away in my suit cases. I stated that I kept a few out of each, because I did not know how long that I would be on the road traveling.  Now I have been on these medications for more than 5 years, so there was no driving while intoxicated because they did not work like that on me.  The cop arrested me for being in possession of dangerous controlled substances!  Now, until this, I did not know it was illegal to carry narcotics that you have prescriptions for in other means.  I mean why do they make pill cases without warning labels on them?  These ended up being Felony charges against me!  I couldn't get the DA to drop the case even though I had valid prescriptions for them.  Plus they were confiscated and I ran short at the end of the month, so I went through withdrawl a few days.

I called the DEA, no one could find this law!  I looked under the Uniform Controlled Substance Act, and it is not there!  So I firmly believe if this is supposed to be a federal law that you can go to jail for, then it should be easy to find and it is not!  

THEREFORE, I BELIEVE THAT THIS LAW SHOULD BE MADE MORE PUBLICALLY KNOWN TO ALL THOSE ON PAIN MEDS AND IT SHOULD BE LABELED ON THE BOTTLE, LIKE THE OTHER LABELS, STATING " PRESCRIPTION MEDICATION MUST BE KEPT WITH ORIGINAL CONTAINER AT ALL TIMES."

I have talked to many and  many people who have run into this situation that was clueless like myself.  I think this law change and labeling addition would say alot of police officer's and courts time & money!

  
54 Responses
356518 tn?1322267242
http://www.youchoose.net/campaign/narcotic_prescription_law_labling_needed#campaignnodetab

This is the adress to the original site.
Avatar universal
IN THE STATE OF OHIO........... NARCOTICS ARE TO BE IN THE ORIGINAL BOTTLES AND THE LITTLE BOTTLES THAT YOU CAN BUY IN THE STORES TO CARRY PILLS IS REALLY MADE FOR PILLS LIKE NITRO-GLYCERIN OR SOMETHING IN THAT NATURE.  I WAS PULLED OVER ONCE AND I HAD SEVERAL NARCOTICS IN A LITTLE BOTTLE AND MY PURSE WAS OPENED AND I JUST WENT AHEAD AND TOLD THE STATE PATROL THAT I DID HAVE NARCOTICS ON ME AND THE ORIGINAL BOTTLES WERE AT HOME.  HE DID TELL ME THAT HE COULD ARREST ME FOR HAVING THEM IN A UNLABLED BOTTLE AND TAKE ME TO JAIL TILL I PROVED IN COURT THAT I HAD A SCRIPT FOR THEM.  BUT HE WAS REALLY NICE AND TOLD ME THAT IT WAS OK ... HE SAID HE HAD NO SUSPICIOIN OF ME SELLING OR WHATEVER... SO HE LET ME GO AND JUST TOLD ME TO CARRY THE BOTTLES WITH ME FROM NOW ON... BUT I STILL DONT AND I KNOW I SHOULD BUT I DONT.  AND IF THE DEA COULDNT FIND THE LAW THEN WHY ISNT THE CHARGES DROPPED?  AND IT DOESNT MAKE SENSE THAT THEY ARRESTED A PERSON WHEN  THEY HAD THE ORIGINAL BOTTLES PACKED AWAY... WHAT WOULD MAKE THE DIFFERENCE IF YOU HAD THE ORIGINAL BOTTLES??  SOUNDS KIND OF WEIRD TO ME.  I MEAN THAT WAS SHOWING PROOF THAT U HAD A SCRIPT FOR THEM.  IN A WAY THAT WOULD BE THE SAME DIFFERENCE IF I WENT TO THE PHARMACY AND PICKED MY NARCOTICS UP AND GOT PULLED OVER AND THEY WOULDNT KNOW IF I JUST CAME FROM THE PHARMACY OR NOT.  I DONT KNOW... JUST SEEMS LIKE THEY DO WHATEVER THEY WANT TO DO ANYMORE.  I GUESS I SHOULD CONSIDER MYSELF LUCKY.. THE STATE PATROL THAT PULLED ME OVER WAS REALLY NICE.  BUT I DID KNOW THAT YOU WERE TO CARRY THEM IN THE ORIGINAL BOTTTLES.  I THOUGHT MAYBE IT WAS BECAUSE OF BEING IN A DIFFERENT STATE BUT THATS FEDERAL.... I THINK ALL DRUG LAWS ARE FEDERAL ANYWAY.
WELL THE DEA IS FEDERAL SO I GUESS THEY WOULD BE.  I KNOW THAT WOULD BE SCARY THOUGH ... BUT SINCE YOU (SANDEE) HAD THE BOTTLES WITH YOU I WOULD THINK THAT THEY WOULDNT BE ABLE TO DO  ANYTHING TO YOU.  BUT I GUESS THEY DO WHAT THEY WANT...HUH???
WELL GOOD LUCK AND KEEP US ALL POSTED !!  
                                          TAKE CARE.......................CATWOMAN
Avatar universal
This is what made me nervous about the Fentanyl patches too. If a cop saw it on you and you weren't carrying the container, would they do something similar?

Never mix pills in another bottle, because they'll take issue with it. I've never had a problem with my prescriptions and frankly wouldn't tell the cop a damn thing until I talked to my lawyer.

Anyone who takes these, never tell them stuff...it'll hurt you more than help you.
Avatar universal
I KNOW WHEN I WAS ON THE PATCHES AND THEY WERE MAKING ME SLEEPY THE DOCTOR TOLD ME NOT TO DRIVE AND IF SHE FOUND OUT THAT I WAS DRIVING THAT SHE WAS GOING TO CALL THE STATE PATROL OFFICE AND HAVE MY LISCENSE TAKEN AWAY FROM ME... BUT I PROMISED HER THAT I WOULDNT DRIVE AND SHE TOOK MY WORD FOR IT.  BUT I DID DRIVE IF I REALLY HAD TO BUT I WOULDNT IF I WAS REAL SLEEPY FROM THE FENTYL PATCH.  IT WOULD BE AWFUL IF THEY WAS ABLE TO ARREST YOU OVER HAVING A PATCH ON... SOME OF THESE LAWS JUST DONT MAKE SENSE!!  ITS HARD TO TELL WHAT THEY CAN ALL DO LIKE I SAID I THINK THEY DO WHAT EVER THEY WANT TO DO!!
MY OPINION.   BUT I DONT THINK ITS FAIR IN HOW THEY ARE  TREATING SOME PEOPLE AND THEN OTHERS GET BY WITH IT.                       CATWOMAN  :)
775302 tn?1253104105
I'm in shock, I can't beleive that even after the cops found out that you had valid prescriptions for the pills and that you were totally up front with them and they still wouldn't drop the charges!! That is insane! I never never never carry a full months worth of pills when I go away for the weekend. We go away almost every weekend and I take only enough to make it that time I'm gone. I would hate to forget them somewhere or have them stolen or whatever I just thought it was safer to keep the bulk of them at home. Now I'm going to have to re-think that. Even when I go to the ER and I show the admitting - triage nurse what I'm taking I always have the original bottles but not all the actual meds in them. I tell them I don't like walking around with that much narcotic meds on me and after if  I'm admitted they don't want me to have my own meds because they don't want me taking too much. the nurses always tell me  that I'm doing the right thing. But if a cop was there he could arrest me??? This is scary as all get out!
356518 tn?1322267242
I am soooo sorry, I should have been more clear. THIS DID NOT HAPPEN TO ME. I found this while searching laws we have aginst the pharmacist who treat us so badly.
Sorry!
Avatar universal
nevermind,
it confused me at 1st, quotation marks would have helped.
however the message is pretty much the same.
it seems that whatever we do it can be twisted into something bad by law enforcement.
so what do we do then?
carry all our meds with us all the time? but then they can charge us with being under the influence.
does the law or legal fraternity have a view as to how we should carry our meds when out of the house?
1 Comments
Why not hold onto an extra bottle, the prior prescriptions, and the new one... I use an old bottle for carrying my med, and keep the extras at home in the newest bottle... The older bottle states to use the meds by a year in advance.. An official wouldn't be able to tell which bottle the med belong to, as the bottle states 8mg of hydromorphone on both, thus you wouldn't be breaking any laws.  
535089 tn?1400677119
Nick:

I think you will have to check the laws in your Country. I'm not so sure that they are the same. And maybe they are!!

Terrible story anyway.
356518 tn?1322267242
The laws vary state by state. The federal law though is valid in each and every state in America.
The laws of course change with different contries and in my personal opinion they are worse than those in America so be very careful and learn the laws that affect you.
We are branded drug abusers when we go to the doctor concerning our pain and then again when we go to have the medications filled and then we could be branded as drug dealers when we have said medications on us. It seems we lose every way we turn. But there are those out there who do realize chronic pain is a disease and needs to be treated such as doctors and pharmacist and policman who perhaps have a loved one who suffers and needs theses kinds of medications. So it is important not to bunch them all together as bad people as we know there are those who do understand what we go through and how we live day to day.
Avatar universal
   I can totally relate to what you guys are all talking about.  And believe it or not it gets worse.  I was giving a friend of my sisters a ride to a local store.  When we stopped for gas a cop started harassing my sister's friend and somehow that turned into finding out that she was on probation.  I was in paying for the gas and using the potty then came out to find her with the cops at my car.  He was just starting to search MY CAR when I came out.  I asked what the problem was and he said that he had seen my friend in the parking lot and DIDN'T LIKE THE LOOKS OF HER and low and behold he said that his instincts were good, because after all she is on probation.  He then searched my car, and then asked for my purse.  I asked why, and was told that because I was with her that made me searchable as well.  When going through my purse he found my meds. in their prescribed bottles.  He wasn't familiar with the names and asked me what they were.  I was honest and told him exactly what they were and what they were for.  I had a bottle of Avinza (morphine er), a bottle of Oxycodoone, a bottle of dilaudid, and a bottle of Ambien.  I was charged with four felony counts of possession of a C2 controlled substance.  I went to jail for 5 days.  I was arrested on a fri. night  and did not get in front of a judge until the following wednesday.  At that time they OR'd me, but that didnt give me back my 5 days.
    I went to court over this 6 or 7 times, the arraigment, assigning an attorney,  (they only make on tiny little decisions each time and then it is come back in another month.  In the middle of all this I was very ill and didn't realize it, I ended up in the hospital, my case, (which I had already provided documentation to the court re: the prescriptions), and my attorney had said that they would probably drop the charges on our next visit as soon as they  verified the validity of the documents.  But being in the hospital I missed the next court date.  When I contacted the public defenders office I found that my case had been transferred to a different court, a different DA and my public defender had retired.  The new attorney did not seem to think I was really that bad off and kept setting new court dates 3 weeks away.  Even though I told her that I had no idea when I was due to be released, that they were talking about taking my leg off and that I was due to be in the hospital for quite awhile.  She set 6 different court appearances, I was in the hospital for all of them.  When I was released I found that those missed appearances really ++=# off my judge so he issued a warrant for my arrest for $30,000.00 When I begged my PD to get it back on the calendar I was told that the only way to do that was to turn myself into the jail and wait until they could get me in front of a judge.  Having just had my leg cut off I couldn't really think Of anything I wanted to do less than go to jail with one leg.  So I waited.. trying to figure out what to do.
  Flash forward 6 months...BAM BAM BAM  at the door. The police were there to arrest me.. my sisters kids were taken by cps.  (They've lived with me almost their whole lives),  I bailed out in 2 hours.  They would not return the kids.  They declared me an unsuitable caregiver, and put my babies in foster care.  Where they still are today.  Yes the charges did get taken care of.  It took my hiring my own attorney but they did finally drop the charges at the beginning of May.  I go to court next week, and the attorney for the girls, and the attorney for my sister are all endorsing them being allowed to come home.  I have no idea if that is going to happen or not.  I pray that it does.  I am really afraid that it won't because it seems like the personnel at the  foster care agency have an agenda of their own, and it seems to involve the money they get to keep the kids more than what is best for them.  They have been placed in 4 homes in 4 months.

Is there a moral to the story...The only one I can think of is don't take your drugs with you...it can ruin your life..and the lives of ones you love.  This story is sad but true.  I wish it weren't.

Vickey
710547 tn?1295449630
Well, I've heard it all now.  I have someone in my home that used to (too recently ago) steal my drugs and take them himself.  I had to take all mine with me at times.  I also put some of each of my drugs into a single bottle.  I take a great many meds and I can't take them all or I'd have to go to church, the store, etc. with a suitcase!  This is absurd!  Sometimes, when I know I'm innocent, or in the right, I tend to behave naively.  I guess I need to figure something out.  I thought the only time you could get into trouble was if you crossed country borders or something.  If they have to be in their original bottles, yet you can't have a months worth - what is the answer?  Put most in an old bottle, also marked by the correct label, and take just the right amount in the current bottle?  What if you're held over and you run out?  Oh my, I'm not sure how to handle this.  Maybe it's a good thing that I'm now too sick to leave home much.  The only places I go are the doctor and hospital, but being stopped speeding etc. still would be a problem.  I'm stumped.

Jan
Avatar universal
I have to say Vickey, that's horrible. However for most, I don't think that would happen.

1. If you take the medication legally, you have backup. Cops can't charge you with possession of something you're meant to have unless they're complete psychos.

2. I can't imagine they'd get angry at having 60 pills in a bottle that says you have 60 pills. It would seem far more suspicious to have 20 in a bottle meant for 60.

3. Also, don't tell cops anything if you can help it until you speak to a lawyer. It can end up hurting you more than helping.
775302 tn?1253104105
My husband is  a Police Officer in Philadelphia for over 10 years now and he tells me all the time, NEVER OFFER INFORMATION. Even if  you know you are  totally innocent and  think that you should just tell the cops what is going on it is ALWAYS best to shut your mouth and wait for a lawyer. It is a shame that we are all guilty until proven innocent but that is the case and beleive me, being married to one I can tell you. cops can be real jerks! My heart goes out to those of us that have been accused unfairly of being a drug addict/seeker.

xo
Babs
765775 tn?1366028291
Well.......I got onto this one a bit late but as I am a police officer let me try to clear up some things.

In my 23 years in law enforcement I know of NO law that states you can not travel with prescription pain medication on your person that IS prescribed to you. There are ordinances that vary from state to state on quantity that you may have that is not in the labeled bottle so it is best to just have it in the bottle as I myself carry them. The Federal Goverment and the DEA actually encourage those that have to travel with these types of medications to have them in a carry on bag and not in a checked bag because of the level of abuse of these narcotics and the risk of theft.

You CAN be arrested and charged with DUI in all 50 States if you are caught driving while taking these medications, prescribed or not. I am assuming that is why the woman's husband who is a Philadelphia Police Officer said not to say anything. All of us that take these medications know that it is almost impossible to not be able to drive if we have to take these medications everyday. It is just another problem we all deal with everyday. None the less it is against the law.

In regards to Vickey's story the way she explains it, that was an illegal search in any state. The police officer could not search your vehicle or your purse without probable cause or your permission. This would be the same for the person mentioned in the story that Sandee posted. The officer can ask you to put your purse outside the vehicle for his/her own protection in case there may be a weapon in there. If he or she feels that there may be a weapon or contraband in the purse they still must ask permission or get a warrant as once it is not within your reach it no longer poses a threat. You don't forfeit any of your rights because you are in the company of someone that is on probation. I don't know what happened as I wasn't there and I am very sorry to hear that you had to lose your leg and then suffer through this experience as well.

If you were unable to travel anywhere with these medications, how would you get them home from the pharmacy? That is why Vickey's story has me a bit confused as she said her medications were prescribed and in the labeled bottles. Even if prescription fraud were suspected an investigation should have to be conducted prior to charges be filed.

It took me a very long time to type this because of my conditions, but I seems that some are getting confused with the law here and I wouldn't want anyone to go without their prescribed medications because they thought they couldn't leave their home with them without the fear of being arrested.

356518 tn?1322267242
Oh Vicky I am soo sorry for what you have been through! I do hope you consult an attorney as red said they had to probable reason to search you and if you did not give them permission they were out of line! Also you had legitimate prescriptions for your pain medications so I would definitely look into putting a case against them to show them they were wrong and the horrible time they put you through not to mention your sisters kids! Oh that is awful they had to endure the pain they must have gone through for nothing! Talk to a attorney please!


Red,
Thank you so much for chiming in on this topic. We can always count on you to advise us when it comes to matters like this, we are really lucky to have you here as part of our community! Thanks again:)
Avatar universal
Good post Red, and no offense Vickey but I think something is missing from your story as Red pointed out.

Red, also...you can be charged for DUI that is true, however it almost never ends in a conviction because proving you were under the influence can be hard. If you take an ER medication at 6am and it lasts 8 hours and you get pulled over at 5pm, the medication will be in your system on a test, however you're not being affected by it. They have to bring in specialists to prove it and it takes a lot of effort and it would be nearly impossible to prove.

Furthermore, unless you actively tell them, or look intoxicated from it chances are they won't notice. I was arrested last year, and had the opiate in my system and was never questioned except about alcohol. So while it is a possibility, it's not very likely. Telling a cop "YEAH I TOOK 2 MORPHINE!" if he asks is the worst thing to do. Don't tell them a thing and if they notice intoxication, speak with a lawyer before saying anything.

Offering up information to a police officer can be your undoing if you're suspected of anything. There was a seminar on google video by a prosecutor and police officer about this, showing all the ways it can backfire.
765775 tn?1366028291
I wanted everyone to be aware of the DUI because it is not just about being pulled over. What if, God Forbid you get into an accident and you are injured or you injure soemone else. In this case you are going to the hospital regardless and blood will be drawn and you WILL be arrested. I have been there and have seen it for myself too many times.

Believe me,a police officer gets no pleasure in having to arrest someone who is in bad shape to begin with and adds insult to injury with a new one to deal with or have to carry the burden of hurting someone else.

Listen, I still drive myself when I can while on these medications, but short distances only. That doesn't make it right. I still run the risk of hurting myself or others backing out of my driveway, but we can't have to rely on others all the time to get to doctors appointments, stores, etc. Some of us have nobody to help us, those are the people I really feel sorry for.

The other thing you need to be mindful of is that just because you don't tell the officer that you are taking the medication doesn't mean that you going to get past a field sobriety test. It can be administered at anytime when an officer feels that you MAY be intoxicated. I have seen people fail them simply because of their disabilities and still be charged because the medication was later found in their system.

I will say that, I, personally always have let the person go that was honest with me about it and didn't have far to go. If they did have a distance to travel I would either let another licensed driver in the vehicle drive or let them call someone to come to the location and drive them rather than make an arrest. I was never that desperate to hit the sheet with a cheap arrest. I work in a city where someone gets killed everyday so there are bigger things to worry about. But you are all right that there are cops out there that will, but again the law is the law.

I will tell you this. If you have a Hanicapped Placard or Handicapped Plates, most officers will not arrest you and give you the options that I mentioned above. Police Officers are human beings also and understand these things. I just got one myself in March. After being a cop for 23 years it was a bit humbling for me to do but my doctor insisted as I can't walk more than 100 yards now without having some difficulty. I have to say that I am getting a bit pissed with able bodied people getting these things and taking the parking space that I need but that is another issue.

We all have experienced lightheadedness, dizziness. sleepiness, etc from these medications and know that it can happen at anytime. That is why it is safer to just not drive but it is just another Catch 22 that all of us have to deal with.

It is better to be safe than sorry and we all need to think about the safety of others as well as ourselves. Get a ride whenever possible and if there is another licensed driver in the car toss them the keys. My son just got his license so he is my personal chauffeur these days. I know he just wants to get his hands on my truck but I will take the service while it lasts. LOL
Avatar universal
True Red, but a lot of people on these medications for long periods of time have no issues at all mental or physical impairment. If I was ever field tested, I have two shot knees and cannot balance regardless.

Taking these meds and driving doesn't affect me in the least and never has. For them to actually prosecute you is not easy, they need to hire people that can actually attest that you were intoxicated. You could hire an expert that would say the exact opposite and it would become a long drawn out battle.
765775 tn?1366028291
You are making my point. Why go through all of that if it is not necessary. I have witnessed other officers administer a field sobriety test to a person with bad knees just like you and the officer felt they failed the test.

Blood was then taken and an arrest was made. Police Officers are not doctors and unforunately the arrest is legal. While it may get dismissed in court at a later date, do you think it is worth the risk?

I will tell you that most of the time my medication doesn't affect me either, but right now as I am typing this I feel that I have to take a nap because I am excessively tired. I took my medication 3 1/2 hours ago. This it what can happen with extended released medication especially, but also with any of the others that chronic pain patients are prescribed. One hour ago I would have felt I could drive fine and would have probably made it to my destination but at this present time a would be a danger to myself and others if I were on my way back home from that destination.

While we may not agree with all the laws they are in place for a reason. I don't like paying taxes either but unfortunately that is another one we can't get around without the possibilty of arrest in this country. LOL
1 Comments
Do you take neurontin? Only med that makes me sleepy hours after taking.
765775 tn?1366028291
BTW: I have been on pain meds since 2006 so they are not new to me either. These substances can cause side effects at anytime for various reasons, even if you are tolerant of them.

If you really think about it, I think you will agree with me in the end. As I said earlier, there are times when I drive because I have no choice also, but it doesn't make it right.
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