Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Law & Order

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Law & Order

Article excerpt

Patrol suspends field tests for drugs * The Missouri Highway Patrol has stopped doing field tests for illegal substances during police raids and traffic stops amid concerns about exposing troopers to fentanyl and other dangerous narcotics.

The Hannibal Courier-Post reports the patrol informed prosecutors of the change last year. The policy took effect this month.

Field testing provides immediate evidence that prosecutors can use as probable cause to file charges. Now, material is sent straight to a lab, but those results can take several weeks.

Some prosecutors worry that without immediate testing, they'll have to delay filing charges against drug suspects.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opiate painkiller dangerous to the touch or even if it becomes airborne.


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