This week we completed a case which involved locating a veteran of the U.S. armed forces that was addicted to heroin. (This is actually the 16th of similar cases like this so far in 2016.) The case was successful – meaning we got the person into detox and then into a rehabilitation program. We have found many more, but the lure of the drugs is too powerful for some to stop. They remain on the street chasing powder.
We refer to these cases as “locates“, and they usually begin when the spouse or the parents of the veteran calls one of our our offices for a free consultation. Fairly quickly, we develop a profile of the veteran and zero in on what city and state we can conduct an investigation.
The key question is not if we can find the veteran, but to the parents and spouses: What are we going to do with him/her once we do?
We work these cases in an entirely different manner than most of the private investigative establishment. We have to feel there will be some chance of success, and we only take 1 out of 10 cases presented to us. The key question is not if we can find the veteran, but to the parents and spouses: What are we going to do with him/her once we do?
Most people don’t have a clue. Fortunately, we do.
Once accepted, we receive at flat-rate retainer based on the facts gleaned (either in a personal interview in one of our offices or over the phone with clients throughout the United States). Our efforts are concentrated on finding the veteran quickly and efficiently. We will work the case for 15 calendar days. Given we have 2 or 3 investigators working on the matter simultaneously. If we are not successful, the flat-rate fee translates into working for minimum wage. That is simply not a good business or monetary model, so finding the veteran within a few days is always the goal.
We are fortunate to know where many addicts hang out throughout cities in the United States. We also have informants that we use at bus terminals, flop houses, low end motels, soup kitchens and local pandering spots where addicts go to beg for money.
So how do decorated service veterans end up on the streets with a needle in their arm?
Nearly all the veterans we find suffer from some sort of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression or Substance Use Disorder (SUD). These conditions manifest themselves in memory loss/problems, self-esteem issues, sleep derivation, aggression, flashbacks, relationship issues and trouble focusing on the issues at hand.
The veterans will tell you they are treated with legitimate prescription drugs dolled out by the military… painkillers like OxyContin, Lortab and Vicodin. There are Benzodiazepines like Xanax, Valium and Ativan. There are also sedatives like Ambien and Lunesta. So what happens when the so called “legit” drugs run out? The veteran seeks relief on the street.
Most turn to the cheap drug that is readily available, heroin.
As a former Drug Enforcement Agent, I know the scourge of this drug all too well. I also understand that with a kind, understanding, sympathetic but firm hand, you have a chance to change someone’s life in a dramatic fashion.
It is important to retain someone who is versed in the possible 3-phase process and what facilities to place the veteran. That is the easy part. Getting them to give up the dragon is a herculean effort. That is often only accomplished through the skills of a private investigator experienced in the art of interview and interrogation.
Make sure your private investigator understands there are 3 parts to fixing the problem. First, the veteran must go into detox. This is usually accomplished in ten days or less. Second, there is a rehabilitation program that will be a minimum 30-day stay. Third, this second phase may also be accompanied by a program to address the physical pain from the original injury suffered by an IED or accident in combat.
Determine if your private investigator knows his/her stuff when he comes to these rehabilitation facilities. if they don’t, just call our toll-free number below and we will try to help you as a professional courtesy.