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Press Release

Ohioans turned in 50,000 pounds of prescription medication as part of DEA National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

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

With enthusiastic participation nationwide, DEA and its law enforcement partners have now collected nearly 12 million pounds of unused or expired prescription medications over the course of 17 successful DEA National Prescription Drug Take Back events. During the 17th semiannual event on April 27, the Take Back initiative saw new records for the numbers of law enforcement partners, collection sites. Together with these local, state, tribal and federal partners – more than 5,000 total – at nearly 6,400 collection sites, DEA collected and destroyed close to 469 tons of potentially dangerous unwanted drugs.

This brings the total amount of drugs collected by DEA since the fall of 2010 to 11,816,393 pounds, or 5,908 tons.

The Detroit Field Division, servicing Michigan and Ohio collected a total of 75,514 pounds of unused, unwanted or expired prescription drugs. The state of Michigan collected 23,692 pounds and the state of Ohio 50,821 pounds.

“We know of many cases where leftover pain pills have led to an opioid addiction,” U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio Justin Herdman said. “Properly disposing of these pills is one important step anyone can take to get involved in turning the tide on the opioid epidemic that has caused so much pain here in Ohio.”

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day events have been extremely successful not only in getting unused drugs out of the house, but also in raising awareness of their link to addiction and overdose deaths. The public has embraced the opportunity these events provide to remove medicines languishing in the home that are highly susceptible to misuse, abuse and theft. Public demand for safe and secure drug disposal has also resulted in a significant increase in year-round drug drop boxes at law enforcement facilities, pharmacies, and elsewhere, making drug disposal even more convenient.

Complete results for DEA’s spring Take Back Day are available at Video of DEA’s Take Back Day collections being weighed and destroyed is available at

DEA’s next National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is October 26, 2019.


Mike Tobin

Updated May 8, 2019

Prescription Drugs