One of the reasons many addicts end up in legal trouble is because they become willing to commit crimes to support their addiction. Don't make the mistake of giving your addict money thinking it will stop him or her from committing crimes. It doesn't work that way. There are addicts with considerable access to money who will still break the law. For many addicts, their sense of right and wrong is altered by drugs. For others, the thrill of getting away with it is almost a high in itself. Common crimes committed by addicts include:
Shoplifting: There are three kinds of shoplifting to support addiction. (1) The addict steals merchandise and returns it for a gift card then uses the gift card to buy drugs from a drug dealer. (Dealers often accept gift cards from local stores). (2) Stealing merchandise to sell on the street. (3) Finding out what the drug dealer wants or needs and stealing it in return for drugs.
Burglary: Breaking into houses and cars to steal things that can be sold is a very common addiction crime. Sometimes, the addict burglarizes a stranger's home, other times it may be the home or car of a family member. Anything that can be sold will be taken during a burglary.
Prostitution: Addicts of both genders, but more often females, turn to prostitution to support a drug habit. It quickly becomes a vicious cycle where the addict needs to be high to handle selling his or her body and ends up selling his or her body to get more money to get high. It also isn't about the money in some cases. The whole drug-subculture is often part of the addiction and it drives people to accept things as normal that they would have found abnormal in their pre-drug days.
Drug dealing: An addict will buy 10 pills, keep two for himself or herself and then charge a little extra for each of the remaining eight to get the money back. Unfortunately, most addicts need more drugs for the same high as time goes on and have to buy larger quantities to make it work. At some point, they end up getting arrested for drug sales or possession with intent to sell.
These common addiction crimes underscore the importance of getting the addict into treatment. Having a record creates life obstacles that are better avoided whenever possible.