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The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Heroin Town Hall Meeting

MONTGOMERY COUNTY -- Heroin use and deaths are now shooting up in Montgomery County. New proof that we have an epidemic came out Wednesday night at a town hall with police and community leaders.

According to the U.S. Dept. of Justice, heroin is the greatest drug threat in this area. The Montgomery County Sheriff says heroin related crime and overdose deaths are up. He's sick of it and he says you should be too.

We've shown you proof of the epidemic first-hand of heroin sweeping the streets of Montgomery County, practically affecting every neighborhood maybe even yours.

"It's not just your typical unemployed person in the gutter who uses needles. It could be one of your neighbors with the change in potentency of the drug might die," said Kettering Medical Center's Dr. James Brown.

Emergency room doctors say they see at least one heroin overdose everyday. And this year the number of heroin overdose deaths is set to surpass any other year in Montgomery County.

"This epidemic is real, it is real," said Shallon Coleman, a recovering heroin addict. She was addicted to heroin for more than 20 years.

She shared her story at the first ever Drug-Free Coalition Town Hall.

"My reprieve, my reprieve, and this may sound insane because I was insane at the time. My reprieve was going to prison," she said.

The coalition says the meeting was the first step in reducing the heroin problem in the area by making the community aware of the issues and explaining what's being done to fix it. Law enforcement plans to work with the prosecutor's office and judges to stregthen penalities on dealers.

"If you give someone heroin and it kills them, we need to hold them accountable for their death. You essentially killed them. We need to hold drug dealers accountable," said Montgomery Co. Sheriff Phil Plummer.

They also talked a lot about getting help for addicts. The drug-free coalition hopes to bring more treatment options to the area.



 
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