ABC 22 News Team
- Alexandra Lewis
- Amber Watson
- Elyse Coulter
- Hilary Zalla
- Kelly May
- Kristine Frazao
- Nicole Grigg
- Rhonda Moore
- Wale Aliyu
- Ann Reynolds
Low: 66 Winds: E 2-4 mph
Tomorrow: More Sun - Hot & Humid with Heat Index Values in the Mid & Upper 90s.
High: 90 Winds: SSW 5-10 Light
Wednesday: Showers & Storms ...
SPECIAL REPORT: Heroin Epidemic Hits Neighborhood Playground
SPECIAL REPORT -- As Miami Valley's Heroin addiction problem continues to grow worse, so do the concerns of discarded needles. In a controlled experiment we did with Wendy Doolittle, who has been working with heroin addicts at McKinley Hall for more than two decades, we tested to see how children react to fake drug needles on the playground. With parents present and with their permission, Doolittle helped us demonstrate how needles can be a risk for innocent children playing on the playground. That's because, unfortunately, sometimes kids will find the real thing.
"Clients talk about getting high in their cars, getting high in parks and when you do that you want to get rid of the needle when you are done because that is drug paraphernalia and if you get caught then there are charges," said Doolittle. "So I can easily see how people shoot up and just discard the needle wherever."
"It was between me and my neighbor's window and I had her come grab it with a trash bag," said parent Lori Taylor. "Then I found one going down to check my mail."
Newly released numbers from the Department of Health says 680 people died of heroin overdoses in 2012, up from 426 deaths in 2011, a 37 percent increase. Clark County Sheriff's deputies tell us they will probably make more heroin arrest this year than any other, and more heroin users means more heroin needles.
The fake needle we used for the experiment was not dangerous. In fact it was only a syringe with no actual needle. Plus Doolittle super-glued a cap on the syringe so the kids will not be harmed by it.
"I'm a little curious as to how they're going to react," said parent Steve Cornelli.
Consenting parents watched on to see what their child would do.
Most of the kids we experimented with did not even notice the needle.
"I don't think she even noticed it, she just stepped on it," said Cornelli.
Some saw it and completely shied away.
"I'm glad once she saw that she stayed away from it and didn't pick it up," said one Centerville mom, who asked to remain anonymous. "Makes me feel better."
"He's got it in his hand, he's playing with it," said grandmother Kim Honeyman.
"I found this," said her 4-year-old grandson.
What is it?" Honeyman asked.
"I don't know what it is," the grandson said.
After playing with it and trying to pull it apart, the 4 year old eventually brought it over to grandma.
Thankfully, there is no actual needle inside, but Doolittle says when the real thing is found, the needle will be exposed without a cap.
"Kids look at things and they take them apart and he could've easily been stuck with a needle," said Doolittle.
25 percent of the patients Doolittle works with are hepatitis-C positive.
"Then they've got to go through a series of test: Hep-C, HIV, you get tested for all of that because you don't know. We are talking about a needle could've been used by more than one person because there is a lot of sharing," said Doolittle.
Our last and maybe scariest test was with 7-year-old Eli Shaeffer.
"What the heck?," he says as he picked it up. "Hey mom do you feel like having a shot?"
"He thought it was fun. He thought it was possibly a toy," his mom Elizabeth said. "He had no idea the dangers of a dirty needle."
"It's safe to play with because it had nothing in it," said Eli as he pulled the cap off.
"That could have germs, that could have diseases on it," said Elizabeth. "You don't know where that came from so why did you pick it up?"
"I don't know. I just found it," Eli said. "Looks cool."
"There is some dialogue that certainly should take place with youth about addiction and what it looks like," said Doolittle. "I mean it is on TV enough that you can generate those conversations in your household with your children and talk about the dangers of drug addiction, drug use and talk about the paraphernalia that folks use."
If you happen to stumble across a needle, please discard of it properly before a child is able to pick it up.
Connect with ABC 22/FOX 45 Reporter Wale Aliyu on Facebook and Twitter.
Chefs CornerWe often invite local chefs into our studio kitchen to demonstrate their cooking techniques and recipes. Watch those video segments on this page.
Pay It ForwardRiver Valley Credit Union, FOX45, and ABC22 recognize the good deeds of people and organizations who make the Miami Valley a better place.
Health Care ReformThe Supreme Court ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act sparked a new battle. Check here daily for the latest developments, locally and across the country.
Secrets Of A ThiefWe expose the "Secrets Of A Thief". Sponsored by Shiver Security.
Cool SchoolsOur children are the way of the future and it all starts with our schools. Join us as our Hilary Zalla goes inside schools around the Miami Valley to find out what cool things students and teachers are ...
Town HallJoin in as our expert panel discusses jobs in Ohio
No Text ZoneTexting While Driving Kills Thousands of People Each Year. Many More are Seriously Injured. You Can Help Make Our Roads a NO TEXT ZONE.
Washington TimesPolitics, Breaking News, US and World News.
On Time TrafficGet the latest traffic information and updates here!
School ClosingsGet the list of all closings and delays for schools and businesses within the area, and sign up for text alerts!
Save Local TVFind out how you can save local TV right here!
Raw NewsWatch raw, unedited and uncensored news stories right here!
Pump PatrolFind the lowest gas prices, check out local and national price trends, report low prices and get fuel saving tips!
Political PulseArmstrong Williams is a pugnacious, provocative and principled voice for conservatives and Christian values in America's public debates.
News LinksThese links were chosen by the newsroom for their newsworthy content. These sites enhance the news stories that aired on the newscast on the dates cited.
Menard's Around the HouseMenards Around the House how-to videos give you tips for those much needed home improvements!
On the MoveGet the latest news and more on your mobile phone!
Good MorningIt's Fun, it's fresh, the way mornings should be!
Top StoriesGet up to the minute information from across Ohio in our Top Stories section!
Your Voice. Your Future.As the country faces challenges from federal budget issues to jobs and national debt, your voice is critical to the future.
Waste WatchHow are your tax dollars being spent? Waste Watch tracks whether local, state and federal governments or any groups are using your money wisely...or wasting it.
Six Flags 2Q profit rises 40 percent
GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas (AP) -- Six Flags Entertainment Corp. reports earnings that climbed by 40 percent in its second quarter. The results matched analysts' expectations.
WEST PALM BEACH, FL -- (Marketwired) -- 03/21/14 --
Companies that pride themselves on being eco-friendly may have conflicted
ideas between marketing with ad specialties and maintaining their green
"APES" CONTINUE TO DOMINATE BOX OFFICE
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- You can't shake the apes from the top of the box office tree.
FARGO, N.D. (AP) -- How's this for a summer job -- beer consultant.
IN THE NEWS: AMAZON'S NEW SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE
NEW YORK (AP) -- It's Amazon's latest effort to become a big part of your world -- if it isn't already.
Tonight on ABC 22
6:30 pm ..... ABC World News
7:00 pm ..... Family Feud
7:30 pm ..... Family Feud
8:00 pm ..... The Bachelorette: The Men Tell All
10:00 pm ... Mistresses
11:00 pm ... ABC 22 News at Eleven
11:30 pm ... Jimmy Kimmel Live
12:30 am ... Nightline