COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – The amount of heroin found in a person’s possession that would trigger maximum punishment under state law would be decreased under a bill in the Ohio Legislature.
The proposal decreases the amount from 250 grams to 100 grams, which includes a maximum prison sentence of up to 11 years if convicted and having the defendant classified as a major drug offender.
Supporters say the bill is needed to address the state’s growing heroin epidemic.
The Ohio House approved the measure last year. It’s got a hearing in the Senate Criminal Justice Committee Wednesday.
The most recent state data say a record 1,177 people died of heroin-related overdoses in 2014.
The State Public Defender’s Office, which opposes the bill, said lawmakers should focus instead on improving treatment and addiction services.
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