Duhaime's Law Dictionary


Crack Definition:

Street name for a form of cocaine base, usually prepared by processing cocaine hydrochloride and sodium bicarbonate, and usually appearing in a lumpy, rocklike form.

Related Terms: Freebase

In Dunaway, Justice Clements dished out a veritable chemistry lesson in defining crack:

"Crack is the street name for a form of cocaine base, usually prepared by processing cocaine hydrochloride and sodium bicarbonate, and usually appearing in a lumpy, rocklike form. 

"The two most common types of cocaine found in the United States are cocaine hydrochloride, which typically takes the form of a white powder and is water soluble, and crack cocaine, a form of cocaine base that typically takes a chunky, rock-like form and is not water soluble. Crack cocaine is typically referred to as crack.

Prevent Drug Abuse stamp"One form of cocaine base is cocaine free base (known as crack). The term freebase means to purify cocaine by dissolving it in a heated solvent and separating and drying the precipitate or to use cocaine purified in this way by burning it and inhaling the fumes.

"Cocaine base is smokable and therefore more potent than ordinary powder cocaine.... 

"While courts have divided over whether all cocaine base is crack, there is universal agreement that all crack is cocaine base.

"In agreement with this universal consensus, a forensic drug chemist testified at trial that powder and crack cocaine are the common use names for cocaine hydrochloride and cocaine base, respectively. He explained that normal or classical cocaine has hydrochloride attached to it and is readily soluble in water. He further explained that, with the hydrochloride removed, what remains is cocaine base, referred to commonly as crack cocaine."

REFERENCES:

  • Dunaway v Commonwealth of Virginia, 663 SE 2d 117 (2008, Court of Appeals of Virginia)
  • Stamp is a courtesy of the Kenneth Plummer Collection, with thanks to his son Brian for the use thereof.

Categories & Topics:


Always looking up definitions? Save time with our search provider (modern browsers only)

If you find an error or omission in Duhaime's Law Dictionary, or if you have suggestion for a legal term, we'd love to hear from you!