CINCINNATI (AP) — A county judge is granting immunity from prosecution to anyone who turns in heroin or other potentially deadly drugs after a stunning surge in overdoses in the Cincinnati area.
Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters (DEE’-turz) went to court Wednesday seeking the unusual blanket immunity. Judge Robert Ruehlman agreed, applying it to anyone who turns over any substance or combination of substances that the person believes can cause overdoses. They can take them to any law enforcement agency in the county.
Deters was accompanied in court by the county sheriff, coroner and other officials.
Authorities have said nearly 300 overdoses have been reported in the Cincinnati area since Aug. 19. The coroner’s office has confirmed the powerful animal tranquilizer carfentanil (CAHR’-fin-tin-al) was mixed with heroin used by some recent overdose casualties.