Kasich sends Trumbull County help for heroin epidemic

Ohio State Highway Patrol Superintendent Paul Pride will help Trumbull County combat its heroin epidemic

WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) – Last week, officials in Trumbull County had a conference call with the state about the heroin epidemic and on Monday, Ohio Gov. John Kasich responded in a big way.

Kasich dispatched the superintendent of the Ohio State Highway patrol to Warren to help local law enforcement combat the heroin epidemic. And although their plans are under wraps, Col. Paul Pride said a big part of the plan is collaboration.

“Pooling all of our resources together is extremely effective and making our community a safer place is everyone’s goal and sometimes that unfortunately means we have to arrest people,” Pride said.

That could be something as simple as a traffic stop, which Pride said can be a gateway into other areas of criminal activity. Similar collaborations have been used across the state to help combat crime in the past. 

Meanwhile, state legislators said every option is on the table.

“Whether we strengthen some penalties or we look at trying to get more funding or more help to these people,” State Rep. Sean O’Brien, D-Bazetta, said.

Trumbull County Sheriff Tom Altiere said he has seen the number of overdose related deaths shrink recently all because of education about the problem.

“Because of the media and because of all the effort that we are putting in this, it is getting the word out,” Altiere said.

It takes about eight weeks before officials will get any kind of results back on whether that heroin was laced with fentanyl, but they are trying to put a rush on it.

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