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Indiana Drug Threat Assessment Update
May 2002


Cocaine, both powdered and crack, is the primary drug threat to Indiana. The level of cocaine abuse in the state is relatively high. According to the Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS), the number of powdered and crack cocaine-related treatment admissions to publicly funded facilities in Indiana increased from 3,072 in 1998 to 5,924 in 1999, then decreased to 3,474 in 2000. (See Table 1.) Additionally, 31 percent of adult male arrestees in Indianapolis tested positive for cocaine abuse in 2000, according to the Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring Program (ADAM).

Table 1. Primary Drug Treatment Admissions, Indiana, 1998-2000

  Cocaine Methamphetamine Marijuana Heroin
1998 3,072 265 3,217 1,020
1999 5,924 694 7,006 2,137
2000 3,474 No data submitted 4,345 1,151

Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Treatment Episode Data Set.

Powdered cocaine is readily available in Indiana; crack cocaine is primarily available in the urban areas of the state, particularly in Bloomington, Gary, Fort Wayne, Indianapolis, and Terre Haute. Prices for powdered and crack cocaine are stable. According to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Indianapolis District Office, powdered cocaine sold for $24,000 to $26,000 per kilogram, $900 to $1,000 per ounce, and $85 to $100 per gram in Indianapolis in the first quarter of fiscal year (FY) 2002. Crack cocaine sold for $700 to $900 per ounce and $10 to $20 per rock. The DEA Merrillville Resident Office reported that powdered cocaine sold for $18,000 to $24,000 per kilogram, $750 to $1,000 per ounce, and $70 to $100 per gram in northwestern Indiana in the first quarter of FY2002. Crack cocaine sold for $800 to $1,000 per ounce and $10 to $20 per rock.

Mexican criminal groups, street gangs, and local independent dealers are the primary transporters of powdered cocaine into Indiana. Mexican criminal groups transport multikilogram quantities of powdered cocaine from Mexico through southwestern states using commercial and private vehicles. Street gangs and independent dealers typically transport smaller quantities of powdered cocaine into Indiana from neighboring cities such as Chicago and Detroit via private and rental vehicles. Federal and state law enforcement officials report that local independent dealers are beginning to smuggle cocaine into Indiana from California. Crack cocaine typically is not transported into the state but is converted from powder at or near the point of sale.

Mexican criminal groups are the primary wholesale distributors of powdered cocaine in the state. Street gangs and local independent dealers also distribute powdered cocaine at the wholesale level, but to a lesser extent. African American and Caucasian street gangs and independent dealers are the primary retail distributors of powdered and crack cocaine, which they sell at open-air drug markets, public housing projects, private residences, and in gang-controlled communities.

Cocaine, particularly crack, is the drug most often associated with violent crime in Indiana. Law enforcement officials across the state report that retail distributors frequently carry firearms and have committed drive-by shootings, assaults, and murders.


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