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Published April 30, 2011, 05:21 PM

Polk County Helps People Dispose Of Prescription Drugs

A program in Polk County is helping people get rid of their expired and unwated prescription drugs. Law enforcement agencies took part in the "Take Back" program for the first time.

A program in Polk County is helping people get rid of their expired and unwated prescription drugs.

Law enforcement agencies took part in the "Take Back" program for the first time.

It's an effort to "Take Back" unwanted and expired prescription drugs.

"prescription pills, if they're not used, what happens is family members especially teenagers it seems to be a big problem with these days. They get into these pills and then they start using them." EGF patrolman Jason Schnathorst said.

Officers say in the past 5 years they have seen a dramatic increase in prescription drugs like these and they hope to help change that.

" Between heroin, cocaine and meth., prescription drugs combined. So it's really becoming a trend and a bad one at that." Schnathorst said.

The Polk County Sheriff's Office along with the Crookston and East Grand Forks police departments were open for people to dispose of their medications. East Grand Forks alone collected more than 15 pounds in just a couple hours.

"They probably bring in anywhere from 3 to 10 bottles of prescription drugs in at a time so as you can see with the box there have been a lot of people that have been in." EGF patrolman Seth Merkens said.

Officers want people to know it is against the law to give out prescription drugs to others. This event is a good reminder for the public.

"You're not supposed to give out prescription drugs to other family members, to other people. If it's prescribed to you it's prescribed to you." Merkens said.

"By doing this today it's going to save somebody's life, if not several people." Schnathorst said.

Officers plan on making this a yearly event in Polk County.

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