Should Opioids Be Banned in Court Over Fears of Exposure?
BOSTON (AP) - The potency of the synthetic opioids propelling the nation's drug crisis has Massachusetts' judiciary considering whether to ban the substances from being brought into courtrooms as evidence.
The chief justice of the Massachusetts Trial Court recently told prosecutors she fears allowing fentanyl and carfentanil into courtrooms puts people at risk even when the drugs are properly packaged.
But some medical experts say the proposal appears to be driven by a misunderstanding of the real dangers of the substances.
While powdered opioids are dangerous if they get into the bloodstream, experts say they aren't easily absorbed into the skin, so just accidently touching the drugs shouldn't make someone sick.
David Labahn is president of the Association of Prosecuting Attorneys. He says he is not aware of any other states that have imposed similar bans.