ACLU lawsuit demands Maine man get addiction treatment in jail
A man from Caribou is suing for the right to continue taking his addiction treatment medication when he serves an upcoming sentence, in a case that could change the way Maine jails and prisons handle inmates with substance use disorders.
Zachary Smith, 30, filed a civil rights lawsuit in federal court Thursday against the Aroostook County Sheriff’s Office and Maine Department of Corrections, challenging their policy of not allowing inmates to continue their prescribed medications, such as buprenorphine or methadone, while incarcerated.
Smith became addicted to opioid painkillers as a teenager. He sought a doctor five years ago who prescribed buprenorphine and ushered him into recovery, Smith said. In 2016 his sister, Karli Adams, died of a heroin overdose, devastating his family.