Ohio Sheriff Rick Jones: My deputies won't use Narcan

BUTLER COUNTY, OHIO. - Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones says his deputies won't carry Narcan, despite its effectiveness reversing the effects opioid and heroin overdoses.

He's the only sheriff in Southwest Ohio whose department doesn't use it.

I asked Jones about Narcan after the controversial comments made by a Middletown city councilman about refusing to respond to overdose runs. Jones told me residents, even social workers, frequently ask him why law enforcement continue to revive people who overdose multiple times.

The sheriff said his deputies don't.

"I don't do Narcan," Jones told me.

He blew past that comment and talked about babies he has seen born addicted to heroin in his jail and mothers who teach their teenage children how to use heroin so they can shoot the mom up.

This went on for a while before his statement hit me.

"Wait," I asked, "so your deputies don't carry Narcan?"

"They never carried it," he said. "Nor will they. That's my stance."

The sheriff explained that safety is his concern. When people who overdose are revived, they are often violent and are almost never happy to see the police.

Still, sheriff's deputies in surrounding Warren, Clermont and Hamilton counties carry the opioid overdose reversal drug.

"We're not winning," Jones said, discussing the heroin epidemic.

On that, we can all agree. 

This weekly column is a look around Butler and Warren counties from Enquirer Reporter Keith BieryGolick.

© Gannett Co., Inc. 2017. All Rights Reserved


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