Grant Co. using Crime Stoppers to end heroin epidemic

MARION, Ind. (WISH) – Grant County is asking its community to help get heroin off the streets.

Last week alone Grant County had 12 heroin overdoses. Four of the them resulted in death.

To prevent future overdoses Crime Stoppers is now offering cash rewards.

“If you don’t protect your streets, who’s going to? Be a voice in your community,” said Det. Kyle Beal, the coordinator for Grant County Crime Stoppers.  “It effects everybody.”

The city of Marion and Grant County, as a whole, are dealing with a heroin epidemic.

“Most people are kind of afraid to call and report on their friends and their family members. So, this is the best way to do it. It’s all anonymous, 100 percent anonymous. I have no way to track who called me,” said Det. Beal.

They’re offering up to $1,000 to whomever gives information that leads to an arrest or indictment of drug dealers.

“When we do have an epidemic we speak about it. We’re not scared to tell everyone about it, because I think that’s how we come together with solutions,” said Ann Vermillion of Marion General Hospital.

Grant County was also highlighted last year during 2- Hour News 8’s Heroin At Home, Heartache and Hope special. At that time, residents were dying from heroin laced with fentanyl.

“It’s a nationwide epidemic,” said Grant County Coroner, Chris Butche at the time, “It’s not being put out there, so to speak, that people are dying from this.”

While those 12 people were overdosing, Marion General Hospital posted a message to Facebook directing people to the Indiana Addiction Hotline so they can get help. The number to the hotline is 1-800-662-HELP.

“We wanted to be sure that the public had the resources on how to get them help when that addict is really on their knees and saying, ‘I’m done,’” said Vermillion.

“We’re doing the best we can as far as law enforcement side, but you have to take a stand in your neighborhood and take back your streets,” said Det. Beal.

The number to Grant County’s Crime Stoppers is 765-662-T.I.P.S.