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Chief Justice Focuses On Drug Crisis In State Of The Judiciary

By Brandon Smith, IPB News | Published on in Government, Law, Statewide News
Gov. Eric Holcomb (left) and Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch (right) applaud Chief Justice Loretta Rush as she completes her State of the Judiciary address. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)
Gov. Eric Holcomb (left) and Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch (right) applaud Chief Justice Loretta Rush as she completes her State of the Judiciary address. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)

Indiana Chief Justice Loretta Rush told lawmakers Wednesday in her State of the Judiciary address the state’s court system is prepared to meet the challenges it faces – chief among them the ongoing opioid epidemic.

LISTEN to the State of the Judiciary

Rush says she asked legislative leaders for input when preparing her speech. And she says the common theme was the court’s response to the drug crisis.

“This is a situation where well-reasoned, evidence-based judicial interventions can get people to treatment, give consequences, cut the supply, support families, and save lives,” Rush says.

Rush pointed to several recent initiatives she says will help the judicial branch tackle that challenge. Those include a complete restructuring of the state’s court system and continued technology upgrades.

She says improved tech includes a system that blocks the sale of drug ingredients from certain buyers.

“The 42,709 people named thus far in the system will not be able to buy the meth precursors to cook and sell more drugs,” Rush says.

This was Rush’s fourth State of the Judiciary address since she became chief justice.