The Butler County, Ohio sheriff is standing by his decision not to let deputies carry Narcan, a drug used to revive opioid users who overdose.
“I don’t do Narcan,” Butler County Sheriff Richard K. Jones told The Cincinnati Inquirer on Thursday.
“They never carried it,” he said of his deputies. “Nor will they. That’s my stance.”
Amid a nationwide opioid crisis, Ohio’s Butler County in particular has suffered substantially. Butler witnessed a record 192 drug overdose deaths in 2016 and is currently on pace to shatter that statistic in 2017. Its coroner’s office saw 96 fatal overdoses during the first three months of the year, including 80 involving opiates, officials announced recently.
Yet while deputies in surrounding Clermont, Hamilton and Warren counties all carry Narcan, Butler’s top cop said he’s opposed to following suit.
“There’s no law that say [sic] police officers have to carry Narcan,” he told NBC News on Friday. “Until there is, we’re not going to use it.”
Using Narcan, according to the sheriff, is neither an effective nor affordable way for Butler to counter the opioid crisis.