The Iowa County Attorneys Association is asking the Iowa Legislature to toughen penalties for those who assemble the ingredients and make meth in front of kids. Lucas County Attorney Paul Goldsmith, the president of the Iowa County Attorneys Association, says under present law, those who expose kids to methamphetmine can be charged with child endangerment, but it’s only an aggravated misdemeanor. Goldsmith says because of the seriousness of the crime and the danger posed to children by the chemicals even before the meth is cooked, it should be hiked to a Class D felony. Goldsmith says local prosecutors also want legislators to rewrite Iowa law to ensure those who possess the makings for meth can be charged with a crime. An Iowa court earlier this year threw out a case against someone who had the ingredients for meth, but was planning to give the ingredients to someone else who planned to “cook” the illegal drug. Goldsmith says methamphetamine abuse is one of the most significant public safety and health concerns in Iowa. Goldsmith says Iowa’s 99 county attorneys believe more money should be spent on substance abuse treatment and education programs to hopefully stem the growing problem of drug abuse. The state’s county attorneys are renewing their call for a 25-per-pack increase in the state tax on cigarettes as a means of financing substance abuse and education programs. Goldsmith and other members of the Iowa County Attorneys Association are meeting in Cedar Rapids at their annual fall training conference.
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