Employees at Palmetto Health Richland hospital in Columbia, S.C., thought there was something suspicious going on in a patient room recently. The Columbia Police Department confirmed that they were right: A 44-year-old man who was a patient at the hospital was charged with possession with intent to distribute heroin after officers found 21 packets of heroin in his room, worth about $420, according to a police news release. A Palmetto spokeswoman declined to comment.
Outliers: Another twist to the drug war
The story reminds Outliers of another patient who's active in the drug trade, although he's farther up the pyramid than a dealer. Walter White Sr. of Albuquerque, N.M., is a former high school chemistry teacher who has turned to cooking crystal methamphetamine to pay for his cancer treatment and provide a stash of cash for his family after he's gone. He's also a fictional character, the star of TV's “Breaking Bad,” which began its fourth season last month.
Moral questions aside, Walt at least has this going for him: His cancer is in remission. And he's never been arrested.
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