Shocking images from the scene of an overdose in northeast Ohio show just how devastating the opioid epidemic has been for some parts of the state.
In Lorain, Ohio, where communities are struggling with an abandoned-houses crisis, police responded to a home Wednesday where two men had overdosed on opioids and been dead for hours.
Inside the home, authorities discovered hundreds, possibly thousands, of hypodermic needles littered throughout the house.
— fox8news (@fox8news) April 6, 2019
According to the police report, a girlfriend of one of the men went to the home after he didn’t answer a phone call, and assumed she could find him there because it was “one of his favorite places to visit,” News 5 Cleveland reports.
She found her boyfriend and his acquaintance dead in the abandoned home, which was in horrendous condition. The police report claimed the house had likely been set on fire because it smelled like smoke, the upstairs carpet was drenched in moisture, and the bathroom was covered with feces because there was no running water.
The condition of the home poses a risk for police who may have to respond to additional calls, and especially to children who live in the area.
Lorain PD find two men dead of apparent drug overdoses and hundreds if not thousands of hypodermic needles at an abandoned home at 114 W. 26. Police say drug users used that home. @CityofLorain_OH officials and police working to tear down abandoned buildings. @cleveland19news pic.twitter.com/2gaIE6Lb6m
— Julia Tullos (@JTullosCBS19) April 5, 2019
“They’ll dump extra trash, break into the house, and then you have kids that walk to and from school that play in the area that can go through that backyard,” Captain Michael Failing told News 5 Cleveland. “And that’s going to end up getting a child hurt, having houses in that kind of condition.”
The head of the city’s Building, Housing, and Planning Department said the current homeowner is in a nursing home, and the house will go to housing court if repairs aren’t made. In the city’s eyes, however, it’s not technically an abandoned house, meaning it’s not going to be demolished anytime soon.
Cleveland 19 spoke with the man who lives next door to the home, and he said conditions have been worsening lately, though he’s “been living like this for a long, long time.” The neighbor, Raul Agosto, said he’s been calling city officials for years, but nobody would listen to him.
“I hope they tear this house down,” he said, noting that he’s “got some protection inside.”
— Sia Nyorkor (@TVNewsLady) April 6, 2019
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