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DuPage County Sheriff

James Mendrick

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Programs and Services


First Step

I found some pills and white powder in a baggy hidden in my son's bedroom. He hasn't been himself lately and is hanging around with kids I don't know. His grades are slipping and I'm really worried he may be using drugs. How can I find out what this stuff is?

First Step can help families take the first step in preventing and addressing drug use with their children by providing them with an opportunity to verify if a suspicious substance is actually a drug without the fear of legal action, anonymously, and free of charge.

Parents who find what they believe to be drugs in their home can call the Sheriff's Office Crime Laboratory at 630.407.2100 and tell them they are interested in the First Step program. Parents are not required to provide their name, phone number, or any identification.

The caller will be told how to properly package and deliver the substance to the laboratory. In most cases the caller will be asked to affix an identification number to the packaging. This number serves as a safeguard in the event the parent is stopped by police while en route to the Sheriff's Office. Using the number, the laboratory can verify that the parent possesses the substance because he or she is participating in the First Step program.

Upon arrival at the crime laboratory, a drug chemist will be assigned to screen the questioned substance for the presence of cannabis or a controlled substance. In most cases this is done while the parent waits for the results.

If drugs are found in the submitted sample, parents will be encouraged to contact one of the drug rehabilitation and referral services provided to them by the Department of Human Services. No legal action will be taken.

The crime laboratory accepts submissions to the First Step program during regular business hours, 8:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.