Lock boxes fine with chief

LISBON – Village Council agreed Tuesday to let the police department become one of the locations in Columbiana County where people can drop off drugs, legal or otherwise.

Council voted to allow the ADAPT Coalition to install a secure “mail box” in the police department lobby, where the public can drop off outdated prescription medication and even illegal drugs.

Police Chief Mike Abraham said the idea of placing these locking mail-boxes in police departments around the county is a joint project undertaken by the county Drug Task Force and ADAPT, which stands for Alcohol, Drug, Abuse, Prevention Team.

The secure metal boxes are 13.5 inches wide by 20 inches high by 18.5 inches deep, and cost $193. Abraham said the purpose is to give the public places where they can dispose of prescription medication every day instead of just during special collection events held around the county.

Village Solicitor Virginia Barborak wondered about illegal drugs, noting she sometimes has situations where people come to her after finding illegal drugs in possession of their children and do not know what to do with the contraband but are reluctant to involve law enforcement. She asked if these people could dispose of the illegal drugs in these lock boxes, “no questions asked,” even though security cameras may be monitoring them.

While the main thrust of the program is to get prescription medication off the streets, Abraham told her no one will be prosecuted for disposing of drugs in these lock boxes because to do otherwise runs contrary to the intent of the program, which is to provide a safe and secure way to dispose of these drugs without fear of reprisal.

“I don’t know why you couldn’t put it in there. It’s pretty much what it’s for,” he said of the program.