Greene County residents are being asked to attend a community forum on drugs next month, an event that comes after three suspected heroin-related deaths over the last two weeks.
The forum, titled Our Community’s Drug Problem, will be held 7 to 8:30 p.m. on Aug. 7 at the Beavercreek Church of the Nazarene, 1850 N. Fairfield Road.
Fairborn Municipal Court Judge Beth Root and other Greene County judges are hosting the event.
Coordinators of the forum did not immediately respond when contacted by the Dayton Daily News on Thursday.
Root was quoted in the June 30th edition of the newspaper as saying that she sees one to three heroin or opiate-related cases each day.
The Beavercreek Police Department is investigating the recent suspected heroin-related deaths.
“We’ve had four (deaths) in the past two weeks. Three of those were within the past week,” said Beavercreek Police Capt. Eric Grile. “Having four in two weeks is very high for us. I would say we would average 10-12 a year normally.”
Police are waiting to get the results of the toxicology reports for all the deaths, from the coroner’s office.
Grile said the police department is fairly confident that three of these four deaths involved heroin, but are waiting for the toxicology reports.
All the deceased are males who either live in Beavercreek or have ties to the city and whose ages are between 18 and 40. Police don’t believe they knew each other and don’t know where they got their drugs.
Three of the males were believed to be white.
“This is an example that this epidemic of drug abuse crosses socio-economic lines,” Grile said. “It’s not just old people, young people, white people, black people, rich people, poor people. Just in our community alone, we’ve crossed socio-economic labels.”
Whitney Cleeton of Fairborn told WHIO-TV that one way to discourage teens from abusing drugs is for parents to get more involved in their lives.
A representative of the Greene County Coroner’s office did not return phone calls placed by the newspaper on Thursday. However, a report that was published by the newspaper on July 12 said there were 13 heroin-related deaths that occurred in Greene County between January of 2013 and May 19 of this year.
Grile said the community drug forum is timely given the situation in Beavercreek.
“It doesn’t matter if you live in inner-city Dayton. You could live in the suburbs of the wealthiest zip codes in the area and still be subject to the epidemic,” Grile said.