It is no secret that drug addiction leads the user to criminal behaviors such as violence or theft. Psychology Today reports on a study that demonstrates a link between drug and alcohol abuse and violence.

Science is still trying to understand addiction. More people are accepting addiction as a disease that requires treatment and rehabilitation. Unfortunately, most states cannot force someone to receive treatment if they are an adult and are unwilling to admit themselves. Kentucky, however, is one of the few states that can force an adult into treatment if there is probable cause to order it.

What is Casey’s Law?

According to the Kentucky Government website, Casey’s Law is the result of a young man who overdosed and died as a result of his drug addiction at the age of 23. Although his parents tried to get him help for his addiction, there was no law at the time that could force someone over 18 into treatment. After his death, his parents fought to introduce a law that could force individuals into treatment at the request of their friends, parents or spouses. Casey’s Law recognizes that substance abuse leads to denial or distorted thinking that prevents addicts from seeking treatment.

What happens after someone files the petition for treatment?

After the petition is complete and filed, the court will review the petition. They will interview the petitioner under oath. If the court finds that there is probable cause to order treatment, they will order an evaluation of the individual in question. The evaluation required the input of two health professionals, one of which must be a medical physician. If the judge determines that treatment is necessary, he or she may order a treatment program anywhere from 60 to 360 days.