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How common is theft?

Discussion in 'Heroin' started by ejclarke, May 23, 2015.

  1. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    When someone is in the throes of addiction, they'll do whatever they have to in order to get their next high. The old saying that an addict will steal your wallet and help you look for it is so true. My son was addicted to heroin and stole from me and my wife...even his little brother. They don't do it because they want to. They do it because they need to. Addiction makes people do horrible things that they wouldn't normally do.
  2. Damien Lee

    Damien Lee Community Champion

    I think that theft is very common among all types of substance abusers. I fell victim to an alcohol abuser who I was helping out financially a few years ago. He was involved in the theft of one of my motor vehicles even though I did so much for him. Let's just say that our relationship did not end well from that day on. However, I still believe we should help those suffering from substance abuse but we also need to be cautious with them.
  3. stridee

    stridee Active Contributor

    Drugs definitely do not make a good person bad, but it can if that person does not control himself. Theft I think is actually pretty common because a lot of people do not have the money or income to sustain their addiction. Without stealing from others, it is hard to get the required materials in order to get the drugs they so desire. It is important that we help these people as much as we can. By doing so, we help the addicted person as well as the person who would have gotten mugged.
  4. kylerlittle

    kylerlittle Community Champion

    It's quite common, everywhere. Some areas it's less than others but mostly it is everywhere due to the bad nature of human beings, hence, police exists.
  5. smartmom

    smartmom Senior Contributor

    What some don't know is that stealing is just as much of an addiction as substance abuse. For some, this is a way of life. This is all they know. Watching people work hard for what they have just to steal it away from them. Some steal and sell items for little or nothing just to buy drugs or what ever.
  6. harold

    harold Community Champion

    I believe that it is very easy for addiction to go along with theft. Drugs are expensive and theft can facilitate the acquisition of drugs for an addict. However, I do not believe that they often go together. There are thieves out there who have never been addicted to any substance. At the same time, there are addicts out there who have never stolen anything from anyone. The two habits mostly go together, but it is not a rule. Stealing is a problem that controls people in the same way drugs does. Thieves can either stop stealing if they are helped by a God fearing person to believe in God, or if they fear the law. Some people do not steal because they fear the law.
  7. Whiskers

    Whiskers Active Contributor

    Have you thought that your friend might have been stealing because he needed the cash for his habit? This is the most likely answer as he was aware of the expectations society had of him having been to rehab. Perhaps he is not so clean after all thus the need to steal. This is common and should not throw you off at all.
  8. Matthodge1

    Matthodge1 Community Champion

    People will do whatever it takes to get their fix. I have seen plenty of people steal whenever drugs were the motive. I knew a guy who stole from churches, and if that's not the lowest thing you can do, then I don't know what really is, to be honest.
  9. Matthodge1

    Matthodge1 Community Champion

    Fool you three times!....then you're an imbecile.
  10. LindaSuzanne

    LindaSuzanne Active Contributor

    When I went to my son's court sentencing many years back I couldn't believe how many stealing offences he had committed. He was charged with 11 offences and asked for another 36 to be taken into consideration! How could I not have known this was going on? Afterwards he told me he had to steal at least 3 wallets a day to support his habit. This included a magistrates wallet at a court hearing and ripping the payphone off the wall at the court.

    Now here comes the strange part. He stole from around the age of 10 on and off, long before he took drugs, so never really had a problem with it. I have no idea why he was like this as the rest of us are very honest. He just seems to be wired differently.
  11. greybird29

    greybird29 Active Contributor

    Through many experiences I must say yes drugs can encourage theft. My nephew started experimenting with alcohol and drugs in his early teen years by the time he was seventeen he had became a fully fledged heroin addict. He would do anything for the next fix. He stole from strangers, his friends, his parents, lost his job for stealing and then over $4000 worth of jewelry from his own Uncle and Aunt. He took it to the local pawn shop for the money. Charges were pressed which caused massive family turmoil. He was arrested and spent some weekends in county jail. This did not detour him, he stole prescription pads from two different dentist offices, again charges were pressed; this time it was a felony. He was awaiting sentencing for prison time. He came to my home for a family gathering as soon as they left we realized my sons tablet was missing. I immediately called my brother who stopped and searched the car found the tablet and brought it right back; no punishment. Late that night he went to my other Brother’s house and stole a bunch of tools, once again taking them to the local pawn shop. My brother did not press charges but the pawn shop did so another felony. He spent over a year in prison “boot camp” and is now out on parole and subjected to alcohol and drug test twice a week. Since his release he got a job, got his license and a vehicle and seems to be doing better; there have been no reports of theft.
  12. JayLyn

    JayLyn Active Contributor

    Theft is common among addicts because it is the one of the ways they can get money for what they need, drugs. They are usually unable to work while actively addicted and with men especially (I think) there is more honor in stealing than in selling themselves on the street. There is a different set of values on the street and among street addicts. Stealing is almost something you have to do to fit in. An honest addict is viewed with a lot of suspicion and hostility by the others. It is thought that, that person thinks that they are better than, or if they are not sharing with the others, it is thought that they are rich in their own right and are holding back. So, for a lot of addicts thieving is not only normal, it is desirable. Among the women it is just as bad if not worse. Not only do some prostitute, they often steal from the men that pick them up, often leaving them without any means to get back to where they are from in the case of men who are travelling on business. They take the guys wallet with all his ID, credit cards and cash and then they don't do the date anyway.
    I'm not saying all addicts are like this, they're not. I know because I remained honest in my active addiction but it did not make me popular with other addicts. I did, however, prostitute and I know what its like to go back to old habits after you clean up. Its hard to just turn off everything you know when you are clean. Even though I didn't need the money anymore for drugs, I thought to myself "Think of all of the things you'll be able to buy." And I did. I bought lots of Christmas and birthday presents until I finally realized my kids would be very unhappy if they found out how I'd gotten the money. That snapped me out of it. Likely the person in question feels much like I did. It is an addiction all over again. There is a certain weird thrill in prostitution as there is in theft, and when you first enter recovery, you don't have anything left from you old life,so starting out again can be expensive. This doesn't excuse this kind of behavior but it does help make in more understandable. In recovery we have to learn to change our whole life and lifestyle. That's a big job and I don't think it happens all at once. I myself will probably live a lifetime ridding myself of the negative effects of addiction. You did the right thing not calling the police this time. Give the guy a chance and hopefully he will learn from this mistake. If he does it again, yes have him charged. Don't let him get three strikes on you, that is just enabling him to stay in his comfort zone and not push himself to do better.
  13. JohnBeaulieu

    JohnBeaulieu Community Champion

    Unfortunately theft to support a heroin addiction is all to common. It has nothing to do with whether they were a good or bad person to begin with. They become obsessed with getting money to support the addiction in any way possible.
  14. xTinx

    xTinx Community Champion

    Excessive drug intake initially warped his behavior. However, even though he's now out of rehab and physiologically drug-free, there's no guarantee that his behavior has changed for the better as well. Behavioral tests should be given out prior to releasing rehab patients/members, which would have helped a lot.
  15. JohnBeaulieu

    JohnBeaulieu Community Champion

    @xTinx has a valid point. Hopefully the recovery process would also help with other problems developed out of addiction but that isn't always the case. I don't know about behavioral testing but I do know that other antisocial behaviors beyond the addiction need addressing because they don't just magically evaporate when a person stops using.
  16. Rowe992

    Rowe992 Senior Contributor

    Well if he was still on drugs after rehab then he would be desperate to continue his addiction and therefore stealing to buy drugs will become a natural thing. A lot of addicts will sell everything they own and even steal just to get their hands on more drugs. Some will also sell their bodies.
  17. lilfaerie28

    lilfaerie28 Active Contributor

    Good people do bad things. It happens, and drugs could have been a contributing factor. Lots of addictions can cause people to steal including gambling, drugs, and some people are just addicted to stealing, period. I'm sorry that you had a bad experience like this. I would feel too guilty if I were to steal from someone. I have been stolen from, and it's a terrible feeling.