The Richmond Register

Crime

October 26, 2013

Coroner: Heroin is an epidemic in Madison County

EKU student died from overdose last month

RICHMOND — “Our children are dying, it’s as simple as that.”

Coroner and EMS director Jimmy Cornelison knows first-hand what kills people in his community, and Madison County has not been left out of the heroin epidemic sweeping the state.

A heroin overdose caused the death of an Eastern Kentucky College student last month, Cornelison told the crowd at the “Heroin in the Headlines” workshop Thursday in Richmond.

He handled another overdose death of a woman two weeks ago.

The conference, at which several local, state and federal officials and experts spoke, was sponsored by the Madison County Agency for Substance Abuse Policy.

“Heroin has no boundaries,” Cornelison said, adding that unlike some of the past outbreaks of increased heroin use, people of all backgrounds are using the drug.

Cornelison, along with law enforcement officials at the workshop, directly linked the crackdown on “pill mills” and pain pill dealers in Kentucky to the upswing in heroin use.

Heroin is cheaper than buying opiate pills on the street, officials said.

Another difference with the latest heroin epidemic is the drug is being sold in a more pure form, which is leading to people injecting higher doses as their tolerance quickly builds.

Cornelison said addicts often will be incarcerated for a short time, and dry out from the drug. However, when they get out of jail, usually on bond while awaiting trial, they will immediately go back to the same heroin dosage they took before they were jailed. That often leads to accidental overdoses.

As EMS director, Cornelison is focused on saving lives, and one thing that can mean the difference between life or death during an overdose is a drug called naloxone (marketed as Narcan).

“We have a lot of success with it,” Cornelison said.

One injection can immediately counteract the life-threatening depression of the central nervous system and respiratory system caused by opiate overdose.

Cornelison said police officers may start carrying the drug to more quickly render aid in heroin overdose calls.

The Kentucky General Assembly also passed a law last year that allows doctors to prescribe naloxone to a third-party person who can administer it to an overdose victim. Some pharmacies have begun selling naloxone rescue kits that people can keep in their homes.

Cornelison said keeping an adequate supply of the drug for the Madison County EMS is becoming difficult because heroin overdoses are becoming more common.

“It is an epidemic,” he said.

Sarah Hogsed can be reached at shogsed@richmondregister.com or 624-6694.

1
Text Only
Crime
  • 7-30 Samantha Frederick.jpg RPD: Heroin sales lead to trafficking indictment

    Executing a warrant issued after Samantha Frederick, 29, Northgate Drive, was indicted July 16 by a Madison County grand jury, Richmond Police arrested her Monday on drug trafficking charges.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-29 Robert Abney.jpg RPD: Bottle bomb injures man, damages neighbor’s home

    Richmond Police on Friday charged Robert Abney, 30, of Moberly Avenue, in connection with a May 30 explosion that injured Abney and damaged a neighbor’s home.
    Officers were dispatched May 30 to a residence in the 500 block of Moberly Avenue to investigate the report of an explosion.
    They found the remains of a plastic bottle bomb near a residence adjoining Moberly’s, according to an RPD news release. A wall of the occupied home was smoldering and grass was burned in the area, it added.

    July 28, 2014 4 Photos

  • Jailed woman charged with heroin trafficking

    A Richmond woman already jailed on another charge was served with a drug trafficking warrant Thursday.

    July 26, 2014

  • 7-25 William Gilbert.jpg Four arrested on meth charges at Berea motel

    Berea Police arrested four people Wednesday at the Knights Inn on Chestnut Street, including a man they said tried to conceal a meth lab on his person.

    July 24, 2014 5 Photos

  • 7-24 Justin Smith.jpg One arrested, one sought in Sunday home invasion

    Two men in search of another man broke into a Keystone Drive home Sunday and harassed residents in another nearby home Monday, according to a Richmond Police report.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • RPD: Man falls through ceiling attempting to elude police

    When Richmond Police went to Cody Shelton’s Kristin Drive apartment at 9:44 p.m. Wednesday to arrest him on a parole-violation charge, they said he attempted to elude them by hiding in the attic crawl space.

    July 18, 2014

  • Man indicted in Manhattan Club shooting

    A man charged in a May 20 shooting at the Manhattan Club in which a man was wounded was indicted Wednesday by a Madison County grand jury.

    July 17, 2014

  • 7-18 Aaron Tate.jpg Local burglary suspect found in Texas border town

    A man wanted in Madison County on burglary and criminal mischief charges since March was arrested July 11 by the U.S. Marshal Service in Brownsville, Texas, on the Mexican board.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mother pleads guilty to allowing child rape

    Deanna Lawson, charged with 20 counts of complicity in the rape and sodomy of a minor, pleaded guilty in Madison Circuit Court on Wednesday.
    Between October 2011 and September 2012, Eric Kelley had sexual relations with Lawson’s two daughters, according to court documents.
    She was charged with complicity after police said they learned Lawson knew of the crimes but didn’t try to stop them or alert authorities.

    July 12, 2014

  • No extra jail time for parents on prostitution charge

    Anthony and Kathy Hart, two Madison County residents who pleaded guilty May 21 to prostituting their daughters, won’t be seeing any extra time in jail.
    Both parents, who served time in jail while their charges were pending, were sentenced to probation Thursday in Madison Circuit Court.

    July 11, 2014

AP Video
Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Should Madison County’s three local governing bodies ban smoking in indoor public places?

Yes
No
     View Results