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Employment question about "drug use" & reporting an accident.


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  • Employment question about "drug use" & reporting an accident.

    Hi there,

    I'm currently going through the application process for multiple agencies. The Colorado State Patrol is my first choice and I just picked up the rather lengthy application and questionaire.

    Sorry this is kind of long, I'm just trying to be detailed. I'm aware the big name of the game here is honesty and I have hold no reservations or secrets about my past, like everyone else I've had my bumps along the way with life.

    Here's the two areas that I have concern over:

    Drug use section

    Under the section dealing with illegal drug use, they ask of course if you have used ever marijuana and yes, I tried it when I was a teenager, about 10 years ago and didn't really care for it.

    I know that the marijuana use as a teenager isn't going to be an issue, infact its probably expected however I'm concerned with the question which follows.

    The career page on the CSP specifies no marijuana use in the past 12 months, 3 years for other drugs.

    The question is: "Have you ever used any controlled substances without a doctor's prescription? Controlled substances include, but are not limited to majiuana, cocaine, hallucinogens, PCP/Angeldust, anabolic steroids, opium, heroin, perscription drugs such as tranquilzers, pain killers and sleeping pills.

    Here's the situation. For the past 2.5 years, I've legally used painkillers as needed for severe foot pain related to gout. The gout is a heriditary condition but I now have it under control by avoiding certain foods that can trigger a flairup, taking a medicine to prevent it (alloperinal) and also losing weight, but when it does flare up it is extremly painful. I've been legally perscribbed Vicodin, Percocet and Tramadol over that time. All three are similar pain killers are varying degree of effectiveness.

    When I have a flaireup that last more then a few days I'll go see my doctor for a perscription of painkillers - vicodin, percocet or tramadol; I generally choose Percocet as it's the most effective. However the doctor will prescribe 20-30 tablets with no refills (because its considered a controlled substance, subsequent refills require a brand new prescription - with the exception of Tramadol).

    Usually the 20-30 pills is sufficent for that flairup and I'll have some extras left over for the next one.

    The (perscribbed) use of percocet/vicodin is not the issue (just some back ground), here's where I'm concerned.

    Last summer my wife had some wisdom teeth removed and the doctor perscribbed her vicodin for the pain. She used them for a couple of days until her pain subsided and the remaining pills sat in the medicine cabnet next to my own pain pills. Over a particular weekend I had a particularlly painful flairup (it can feel like your foot is broken) and I only had a few of my own pills remaining so of course I ran out.

    This happening over a weekend I couldn't see my doctor unless I wanted to goto the ER (which is a not so fun, nore inexpensive experience) so I used some of my wife's vicodin pills until I could get into the doctor to get my own perscription refilled.

    I didn't think it was a big deal at the time since have been perscribbed the exact same thing, my own perscription just hadn't been refilled. However, now I am concerned because of the question on the CSP application because technically I've used a pain killer without a perscription.

    But then again, I may just be worrying over nothing as I'm sure they're referring to buying/using drugs illegal for illicit purposes (ie, to get high) and that's not the case. I used a legal pain killer for it's legitiment purpose of which I have previously and since that time been perscribbed for, but I'm worried this technicallity could cost me now.

    Do you think it will be an issue? Am I worrying over nothing? Should I even disclose it? I'm going to be crushed if I'm disqualified from the CSP for legitmently using a painkiller

    Traffic question

    The other area of concern is regarding traffic tickets/accidents in the past 5 years. In the past 5 years I've had 3 speeding tickets - not a big deal but the application also ask if I've had an accident in the past 5 years and if it was reported, which agency investigated, ect.

    Last summer I low-slid my motorcycle in the mountains coming home from a day ride. This was a single-vehicle accident - I went around a corner, slid on some gravel and the bike went into a guard rail. There were no injuries (besides some minor road rash to my knee), no other vehicles/persons were involved and there was no property damage besides to my bike. This happened in the mountains and I didn't have cell phone coverage. I picked the bike up and rode it home without a problem and called the insurance company to report the accident and start the claim process.

    The insurance company asked if I filled a police report, I told them no but asked if I needed to. After asking the usual questions (any injuries, drug or alcohol involved, any other property damage - my answers all being "no") the insurance rep advised me there was no need or requirement to report the accident to the police and went ahead with submitting my claim. I took the bike to a local shop, everything was repaired and the insurance company paid the claim.

    So the accident was reported to the insurance company but not to the police - will that be a issue? Was I actually supposed to report it afterall?

    Thanks for your advice!


  • #2
    To summarize, the questions were:

    Would the police agency consider using my wife's perscription pain killers in between my own perscriptions to be "drug use"? The concern here is I have my own perscribbed painkillers, however I ran out over a weekend and used her left over vicodin pills as a substitute until I could get my own refilled.

    And second - I had a single-vehicle accident last year (motorcycle low slide). The crash did not involve any other vehicles, no injuries, no property damage (besides my motorcycle). The insurance company did not require a police report for the claim and advised me there wasn't a need to file one. However the CSP application ask if you have had an accident in the past 5 years and if it was reported, which agency investigated, ect.

    Is it going to hurt me now considering the accident wasn't reported?



    • #3
      be 100% completely honest with them

      you reallly havnt done anything CRAZY big here and neither of those i believe would be disqualifiers...even combined i doubt it

      with the perscription drug of your wifes....you werent taking it without her knowledge and you werent constantly using it over and over.

      with the accident. it was on your own motorcycle and it didnt involve anyone else

      just disclose it, better to be honest and get disqualified with a ability to reapplying; than lying and losing all hope of gaining a position with law enforcement forever because of your integrity.


      • #4
        I know in my state if damage is less than $1000 and there are no injuries you are not required to report it. So therefore... it is not an accident.

        I know I had an accident which the damage appeared minor at first, but later came to be over $1,000, and I ended up filling out the form for the state to report it.


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