Pearl River Co. teens march against drugs - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Pearl River Co. teens march against drugs

PICAYUNE, MS (WLOX) -

Drug dealers in Pearl River County be warned. More than a thousand people took to the streets to show their commitment to fighting drug abuse in their community during the March Against Drugs. They said that includes helping to put people who sell illegal drugs in jail.

Pearl River County teenagers said it's easier to take a stand against drugs when other young people are standing with them.

Paige Easley, a teenager, said, "Peer pressure is very strong in high school. If you see your friends doing it then obviously you're going to think 'It's okay. I can try it.' but if you see that your friends don't think it's cool then you're not going to try it.

"I'm never going to take drugs which is probably a good thing because I heard they can destroy your brain cells and such," said Blaze Beach. " Not a good thing because I've heard people die taking drugs."

Micah Eastridge said, "I've seen it tear families and homes apart and it's really heartbreaking."

A coalition called Pearl River County United says the county's 17 overdose deaths this year have been heartbreaking. The theme of the two mile March Against Drugs is "Prevention Before Intervention" which includes educating people about the dangers of drug use. and the importance of putting drug dealers behind bars.

"If we're really going to affect any meaningful change we have to have a community solution,"said Mark Stockstill. "That's where people come together just to make a statement. Put drug dealers on alert that you know what we're watching you. We're tired of what's happening in our community and our children and we're going to do something about it."

Donnie Saucier of the Pearl River County Sheriff's Department said all law enforcement in the county is working together to follow up on citizen tips of drug dealing.  He said if people give officers information "I promise you we will catch them. It might not be today. It might not be a month from now but we will catch them, we will have them prosecuted and they will go to prison. We cannot tolerate it any more."

Former New Orleans Saint Michael Lewis told the young people if they get in trouble for making bad decisions, they won't be the only ones to suffer.

"You're not just embarrassing yourself. You're embarrassing your family. You're embarrassing the community. So that's why you try to stay away from those types of things," said Lewis.

Law enforcement officers say since last year's drug march the amount of information they receive from young people about drug crime has increased tremendously

Law enforcement officers said since last year's drug march the amount of information they receive from young people about drug crime has increased tremendously.

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