In November of 2014 the Lake County Board of Commissioners, realizing the heroin epidemic we are facing here in Lake County, granted funding for the formation of the Lake County Sheriff's Office Heroin Task Force. (November 2014 Press Release Complete Text)
In Ohio in 2013, nearly six Ohioans died every day from unintentional drug overdose, or one every four hours. There is a disturbing trend that directly links prescription pain medication (opi
oid) abuse to eventual heroin use. All too often, the path that goes from prescription pain killers to heroin use also leads to an unintended destination: death.
The above statement just speaks to the number of deaths related to heroin usage, now let’s examine all of the collateral victims this epidemic impacts. The retail stores who fall victim to shoplifting so the addict can resell the stolen merchandise or trade it for drugs. Your neighbor whose property is stolen by an addict to support his/her habit. Maybe even your own property stolen by a relative to support their habit. Bottom line is that the epidemic touches us all in one way or another.
The Sheriff's Office Task Force is committed to driving heroin out of our community, making resources available for those addicted to heroin and other drugs, and providing education throughout our community on heroin and other illegal substances (see bottom of this page for programs and informational links). Through partnerships with local law enforcement, our Lake County Narcotics Agency and our Crime Lab, the Ohio BCI, the FBI, the DEA and corrections officials, the Sheriff's Office Heroin unit will be able to coordinate efforts on a number of fronts to:
· Identify, investigate and arrest heroin / opiate traffickers either in Lake County, or in neighboring counties that distribute narcotics here.
· Investigate heroin users to identify not only their narcotic dealers, but to identify and track their crimes in order to resolve the burglaries, robberies, and theft associated with their drug addictions that have negatively impacted neighborhoods throughout the county.
· Work closely with the narcotics agents in collaborative efforts to conduct drug stings of dealers and users in the heroin trade that this new unit has identified through its investigative efforts.
· Investigate and pursue both criminal and civil action against covert fencing operations in order to eliminate the flow of cash which enables heroin users to continue to support their drug addiction.
· Once the unit identifies sellers/users, uncovers information concerning burglaries, thefts and robberies in various communities, locates fencing operations, and other information related to criminal activity, it can pass the information onto law enforcement in those jurisdictions involved, and assist if requested in bringing those investigations to a successful conclusion and conviction.
· Create and sustain a media campaign for citizens to identify and turn in users and traffickers in their neighborhoods to eliminate the influx of narcotics that are destroying lives and families in Lake County.
Sixty Minutes Special ... Heroin in the Heartland
Heroin Addiction Symptoms and Effects