LMPD :: Louisville Metro Police Department

Heroin epidemic worsening in Louisville


It's a problem in Louisville that isn't going away -- in fact, it's getting worse. Ninety-six percent of the detox beds at a local drug recovery center are filled with heroin addicts.

Dig through a week's worth of arrest citations and you will find the same drug cited over and over again. Police arrested William Dodson this week for breaking into more than 100 homes and vehicles in Louisville's east end.

"This individual admitted that he was a heroin addict and they were looking for anything they could get their hands on in order to make money," said LMPD Det. Don Wright said.

Mike Hall, who's now in recovery, can relate.

"Taking items to the pawn shop anything I could do to get my next high," said Hall.

Hall is a typical patient at the addiction recovery center, The Healing Place. The 26-year-old became addicted to pain pills after a sports injury. Once pills became harder to get, he started using Heroin, also conveniently cheaper

"An 80 milligram Oxycontin I would pay $80 and then for a half a gram of Heroin $50," said Hall.

Healing Place President Karyn Hascal explained, "Today we've had this explosion of people using heroin."

She says heroin is simply the drug of the moment. Three years ago it was meth, two years ago it was prescription drugs.

"The reality is the problem is addiction and until we learn to address addiction as the medical, physical illness that it is and make treatment and recovery options available for folks we're going to keep spinning around in a squirrel cage," said Hascal.

Most clients seeking treatment for a heroin addiction are ages 18 to 25. The fastest growing population is coming from eastern Jefferson County, Oldham and Shelby Counties.