Criminal Justice Update
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Criminal Justice Update

A letter from the Attorney General:

The opioid epidemic is a human tragedy of epic proportion. The foster care system is bursting at the seams, jails are serving as detox centers, employers can’t find qualified applicants who can pass a drug test, and tragically, at least 15 Ohioans are dying from overdoses every day.
My office’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) continues to see more fentanyl, fentanyl-related compounds, and carfentanil. As of December, there had been a 380 percent increase in submissions of carfentanil to the lab compared with all of 2016! Additionally, in 2017, there was a 46 percent increase in fentanyl and fentanyl-related compounds submitted by law enforcement.
Opioid addiction is a complex problem that requires attention and action. My office is working hard to come up with solutions. We kicked off the new year with “Ideas for Advocacy: Working Together for Addiction Recovery in Ohio,” which focused on social services.  This edition of Criminal Justice Update offers several stories about a few of my office’s additional efforts to make a difference in the fight. The main story on the cover is about my “Recovery Ohio” plan, a set of 12 initiatives to combat the opioid crisis.
Also, my office’s Heroin Unit is working on new installments in the “Ideas” series against drug abuse. This issue of the CJU features a story about our “Ideas” conference that addressed the opioid epidemic with medical professionals. This program -- “Ideas in Practice: A Closer Look at the Continuum of Addiction Treatment” -- drew about 700 people to locations throughout the state to take part in sessions on evidenced-based practices for helping opioid-addicted patients. Medical professionals on the panels discussed the latest in treatment and the need for collaboration.
At the Attorney General’s Office, we will continue our lawsuit against the opioid manufacturers and our work with communities and law enforcement to face this crisis.  If you have any questions, please contact us at  We can provide assistance in a number of ways, including community engagement, task force development, and investigative strategies. 
Ohioans are not afraid to face challenges and won’t back down from this fight. The time has come to hold the drug companies accountable and take back our communities from the grip of addiction. Together, we can do this.
Very respectfully yours,
Mike DeWine
Ohio Attorney General