Gilbertson highlights impacts of drug addiction during State of the Judiciary address


PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – The South Dakota Supreme Court’s chief justice says an explosion of meth and prescription drugs is a “new wave of evil” that has descended upon state residents.

Chief Justice David Gilbertson said Wednesday in his State of the Judiciary message that addiction to meth and prescription drugs continues despite efforts by law enforcement and the court system.

But he says the statewide network of drug and alcohol courts is working. Gilbertson says the courts served 462 participants in budget year 2017, up from 314 in budget year 2015.

He says an inpatient component should be incorporated into the state’s drug court program.

Gilbertson was appointed to the high court in 1995 and has served as chief justice since 2001. He was re-elected in 2016 to a fifth term as chief justice by the court’s justices.