Butler County Sheriff: My deputies won't use Narcan

Updated: Jul. 7, 2017 at 7:13 AM EDT
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HAMILTON, OH (FOX19) - Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones said his deputies don't use Narcan now and never will under his watch, despite its effectiveness in reversing the effects of heroin overdoses.

He is the only southwestern Ohio sheriff whose department doesn't use it.

Deputies in Hamilton, Clermont and Warren counties all carry Narcan.

Drug overdoses continue to be the leading cause of death in Butler County, according to the coroner, and the county is on track to break last year's record for the highest number of overdose deaths.

"The disturbing trend of overdose deaths involving fentanyl in Butler County continues at an alarming rate," said Butler County Coroner Lisa Mannix in a recent press conference to discuss the epidemic.

But Jones said when people who overdose are revived, they're often violent and not too thrilled to wake up and see deputies.

"'I've seen reports to where people have been Narcaned 20 times," Jones tells FOX19 NOW.

"Not 20 at one setting, but 20 separate times where the life squads and fire trucks and the police have to go out. But in Butler County, not so."

Only emergency medical technicians on ambulances will carry and use Narcan, according to the sheriff.

His remarks Thursday come after a Middletown city councilman recently brought national attention to that Butler County city by suggesting letting addicts die instead of repeatedly reviving them with Narcan.

The controversy prompted Middletown's city manager to issue a statement that first responders would continue going to all emergencies and rending aid.

"We are responding to every call and rendering aid as needed. We give Narcan where it is appropriate.  Period," City Manager Douglas Adkins wrote on the city's website.

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