HAMILTON COUNTY, Ind. - One central Indiana community was taking the steps to make residents aware of the growing drug and alcohol problem in the area.
Hamilton County officials hosted a forum on heroin, illegal drugs and underage drinking Thursday night.
Dozens of people attended and several parents who lost their children to drugs or alcohol shared their stories.
Sheriff Mark Bowen said he wanted to put the event together because his department has been seeing issues they have not come across before.
"Underage drinking is obviously a very big issue and something that we focus on, but also the synthetic drug issue with some of these drugs we’re seeing that we’ve never seen before. Synthetic drugs, spice, bath salts, NBOMe -- heroin is making a comeback which is a drug we haven’t seen in a number of decades. So those are the types of issues we are starting to see and we want parents to be aware of that, know what to look for and know how to get help," Bowen said.
Over the last year, Hamilton County has seen an increase in the amount of drug overdoses and possession arrests.
The county is also on track for 2014 to surpass the record for minor consumption of alcohol cases.