Washington Evening Journal

Fairfield Ledger   Mt. Pleasant News
Neighbors Growing Together | Jul 20, 2018

Sherrif’s Department safely disposes of drugs

Sep 15, 2017

By Xiomara Levsen, The JOURNAL


Since the prescription drop-off box was installed in February at the Washington County Jail, almost 50 pounds of prescriptions have been taken in.

“We picked that site just because it has easy access and there’s a camera on it 24 hours a day,” Washington County Sheriff Jared Schneider said. “We didn’t put it in the interior lobby because you have to buzz in there, whereas people can just go in there and drop it in the door.”

They also didn’t want jail staff have to buzz people in every time they wanted to drop off old prescriptions, he said.

“We take any kind of prescription meds,” Washington County chief deputy Shawn Ellingson said. “I don’t even mind if you have expired over-the-counter stuff.”

Bottles of medication can be put in the drop box or emptied into baggies, which the sheriff’s department prefers.

“The bottles aren’t horrible, but we really like them [the pills in baggies] like this,” Ellingson said. “Otherwise, we have to empty the pill bottles out.”

The prescriptions are held onto until National Drug Take Back days, which are held in April and October of every year.

“We have to hold onto it until that point and then we can get rid of it,” Schneider said.

By disposing of old prescriptions, this keeps drugs from getting onto the streets and from getting into the water system after being flushed down the toilet, Schneider added.

However, this drop-off box isn’t for used needles. Last week someone dumped needles into the box and the jail staff had to deal with it.

“They didn’t even drop them all the way in there,” Schneider said. “They were wedged into the top, so it left our staff trying to force them down in there.”

The sheriff’s department received a grant from the governor’s office of Drug Control Policy for the drop-off box, which was installed at the Washington County Jail in February, as reported earlier in The Journal.


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