Surinder Singh of Clapton put a Stanley knife to his 33-year-old friend’s throat and demanded cash from him. Frightened for his life, his friend handed him £80 and then ran away. Reading his verdict at drug-addicted Singh’s trial, the judge sentenced him to six years in prison, calling his act despicable. Contributing to his stiff sentence is the fact that Singh was a so-called ‘career criminal’ who used extreme violence for a relatively small payoff. The judge believed prison time was the only reasonable solution in this situation.
Are Addicts Violent?
It is not the first time that you hear about violence committed by a drug addict. In fact, it is commonly known that some addicts will resort to violence when desperate enough for a fix or for cash to buy their next batch of drugs. Criminal behaviour is not uncommon among addicts, some of who will also revert to theft and even prostitution in order to feed their habits.
Not all addicts are violent with their criminality, but there is a better than good chance that some of these individuals will get violent in a desperate situation.
What to do When Confronted with a Violent Addict
As with any other criminal, the best approach is that of the least resistance. Addicts are behaviourally unpredictable, and the last thing you want to do is provoke someone with violent tendencies. If possible, comply with their demands. Just like Singh’s victim, you can always notify the police after the fact and have the person arrested for their crimes. Try to extricate yourself from a life-threatening situation as soon as possible. The longer the situation continues, the more likely it is to get out of control and turn deadly.
What Drugs Are Most Likely to Lead to Violence?
Not all drugs cause violent behaviour, but in recent times, the following drugs have gained a reputation for causing violent behaviour:
- crack cocaine
- black mamba
- crystal meth.
This, however, is not an exhaustive list. There are many kinds of drugs on the market, and their effects vary from person to person.
How Accessible Are These Drugs?
Drugs are very commonplace in large cities and relatively easy to come by in certain places such as clubs and other entertainment spots for the youth. Drugs like steroids are often used in sports and other physically competitive activities.
What Are the Common Effects of These Drugs?
Depending on the type of drug, effects could vary and range from euphoria to paranoia and other psychotic symptoms. Very often drug addicts do not realise the consequences of their criminal actions. Their whole reasoning is around getting the next fix or getting the means for obtaining the next fix.
What Do You Do When an Addict You Know Turns to Criminal and Violent Behaviour?
Addiction is one of the most challenging issues to deal with in your family or friendship circles. Addicts need to be confronted with their behaviour, but that is often easier said than done. The best approach is to find professional help BEFORE the addict resorts to criminal and violent behaviour. Nonetheless, sometimes it is inevitable that they will commit some kind of crime to feed his/her addiction.
Middlegate is a professional organisation that can give informed advice on how to deal with a drug addict’s behaviour and how to prevent undesirable behaviour. The addict needs to get help as soon as possible and get into a recovery programme before he or she ends up in jail, or, even worse…
Getting the affected person to admit to having the problem is, however, a significant challenge. Often, some kind of drastic intervention is needed, and the therapists and counsellors at Middlegate are ready, willing, and able to assist concerned family and friends in setting up a suitable intervention. Once the addict gets to a point where he or she consents to treatment, the friendly staff at Middlegate will help make the necessary arrangements to get him/her into rehab.
We also offer outpatient treatment to addicts who want to continue their recovery after their initial stay at the rehab clinic. We provide individual as well as group therapy sessions and have highly skilled and experienced therapists who will help the addict to deal with their daily challenges on their road to sobriety.