Chillicothe officials treat 11 people for overdoses within 9 hours


CHILLICOTHE - The number of drug overdoses continues to rise across central Ohio, as Ross County agencies warned the community to a potentially fatal form of heroin being used.

The Chillicothe Police Department sent a warning on Friday night after it reported seeing an increase in the number of suspected drug overdoses.

Investigators in Ross County believe some of the heroin could be coming from Columbus, where authorities this week saw 48 overdoses in 48 hours.

In started on Friday and continued in Chillicothe for the next 9 hours.

"Our first overdose call came in at approximately 11:43 a.m., several of them were actually just minutes apart,” Sergeant Lucas Hansen said.

Chillicothe Police said nearly a dozen suspected heroin overdose calls went out to first responders, just days after an overdose outbreak an hour north of the city. Officers say an elderly man died.

"Typically the city of Chillicothe will see about one-and-a half per day and as I said earlier, we had 11 overdoses within a short amount of time,” Sergeant Hansen said.

Sgt. Hansen responded to one of the calls for help on Friday. He said he had to administer Narcan to someone found unresponsive, suffering from an apparent drug overdose.

Chillicothe Police had to bring in extra patrols to help with the overdose outbreak, who responded to eight calls in a five hour-period. Investigators believe the heroin being used in Ross County could be mixed with Fentanyl, but they are waiting on toxicology results for confirmation.

"All indications on our fatal overdose point to those signs, however as I said earlier we are awaiting the toxicology reports to confirm that,” Sergeant Hansen said.

Police aren’t sure how large the drug supply is, but they do believe some of the heroin came from Columbus where first responders saw 48 overdoses in 48 hours this week.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine spoke out about the heroin epidemic this week at Franklin Heights High School.

"What's happened in Columbus in Franklin County the last few days, It's not just the cities. It's the suburbs. it's the rural areas, no place is immune from this horrible, horrible epidemic,” DeWine said.

The warning from Ross County agencies is alerting communities of a potentially fatal form of heroin that has made its way south.

At least two more overdoses were reported in Ross County Saturday, but none in the city of Chillicothe.

The Chillicothe Police Department is working with the Ross County Sheriff's Office and the Ohio State Patrol.