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Press Release

Justice Department awards nearly $2 million to combat opioids in Northern Ohio

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Ohio

The Justice Department recently awarded nearly $2 million in grants to the Northern District of Ohio to help combat the opioid epidemic.

In 2016, nearly 60,000 Americans lost their lives to drug overdoses, an increase from the 52,000 overdose deaths the year before. The majority of these deaths can be attributed to opioids, including illicit fentanyl and its analogues. The opioid epidemic, a public health crisis, is also a growing public safety crisis. 

“Today, we are facing the deadliest drug crisis in American history,” said Attorney General Jeff Sessions. “These trends are shocking and the numbers tell us a lot– but they aren’t just numbers.  They represent moms and dads, brothers and sisters, neighbors and friends. And make no mistake combatting this poison is a top priority for President Trump and his administration, and you can be sure that we are taking action to address it.  We are announcing that we will be awarding millions in federal grants to help law enforcement and public health agencies address prescription drug and opioid abuse.  This is an urgent problem and we are making it a top priority.”

“These dollars will support efforts to make law enforcement more efficient and precise as we try to stem the tide of death and suffering caused by opioids throughout our country, state and region,” said U.S. Attorney Justin E. Herdman. “These grants will help prosecutors and police work more effectively to prosecute drug dealers who kill people while also supporting drug courts which help people get the treatment they need.”

Awardees in the Northern District of Ohio include:

Case Western Reserve University, $975,401 from the National Institute of Justice to study the Cuyahoga County Heroin Involved Death Investigations protocol. The protocol was developed in 2014 for help medical examiners and law enforcement with the collection and preservation of evidence in opioid-involved death incidents. The purpose is to improve the group’s ability to secure faster indictments and more successful manslaughter or federal “death specification” prosecutions.

Cleveland Municipal Court, $400,000 from the Bureau of Justice Affairs for drug court and/or veteran’s treatment court.

Marion Municipal Court, $338,931 from the Bureau of Justice Affairs for drug court and/or veteran’s treatment court.

City of Youngstown, $240,000 from the Bureau of Justice Affairs for drug court and/or veteran’s treatment court.

Additionally, the Justice Department awarded $1 million to the Supreme Court of Ohio to assist leverage information about prescribing practices to identify potential solutions and $399,918 to the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy to help develop and maintain centralized databases to collect and analyze prescription data.


Mike Tobin

Updated October 3, 2017