Don’t run, Call 911


don’t run, call 911

It’s now the law in Illinois. It’s crucial to understand.

You can SAVE A LIFE without risking prosecution for possession.

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What is the Good Samaritan Law?

You cannot be charged with possession of small amounts of illegal drugs for calling 911 or taking someone to an emergency room that has possession of drugs.

What is considered a small amount of drugs?

Up to 3 grams or less heroin & cocaine

Less than 1 gram of methamphetamine would be immune from prosecution.

Are there any drugs that are not covered under this law?

Marijuana is not covered under this law.

If you are in possession of cannabis, this law will not protect you from prosecution.

Who gets the protection from prosecution?

Only the caller and the overdosing person receive protection.

The law does NOT provide immunity to other individuals at the scene or those who sold or delivered the drugs.

Does the law’s immunity apply to an alcohol overdose that involves a minor?

No. Alcohol is not on the list of these substances. However:

Community ordinances may be in place for underage drinkers and universities may have an amnesty program.

Does the law apply if the person dies from the overdose? YES.

If the person was alive when the caller sought medical attention – the caller will still receive immunity from possession charges.

If the caller gave or sold the victim the drugs that led to the overdose, the caller could be charged with Drug-Induced Homicide.

Trying to get medical help may be used in court to shorten a sentence.

Does the immunity apply if I take the overdose victim to an emergency room?

The immunity applies to any “good faith effort” to seek emergency medical help, whether that is calling 911 or taking the overdose victim to an emergency room.

The best way to save a life is to call your fastest, nearest emergency service.

Does the law prevent police officers from arresting a person under investigation on a separate drug charge?


The law does not provide immunity if the individual is already a part of an ongoing investigation, even if they are the one to call 911.

Does the law prevent prosecutors from charging a person with drug-induced homicide?


This law only covers individuals who possess small amounts of drugs. People who deliver, sell or traffic drugs to someone who dies of a drug overdose are not covered under this legislation.

What happens if I call 911 and someone is having an overdose? How do I make sure I don’t get charged?

Know your rights.

It is important to talk to the EMTs about the person’s condition to save their life. Should the police come, it’s important to know your rights.

What if I lie and say that someone is overdosing in order to stop the police from charging me with possession. Would this work?


A person who claims that they are seeking emergency help for a life threatening overdose who lies might be subject to additional penalties besides the possession charges.

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