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Heroin Use On The Rise In Suburban Areas

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by Jericka Duncan

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Heroin use is on the rise among young people living in suburban and rural areas.

That’s according to a recent report from the National Drug Control Strategy.

Experts say some young people are making the switch from prescription drugs to heroin because it’s cheaper and easy to get.

Eyewitness News sat down with a father who lost his daughter to a heroin overdose.

Andy Rumford showed us hundreds of small blue bags that once contained heroin.

He says he found them in his daughter’s make-up bag, days after discovering her body.

“She was on her hands, knees on March 12th about 2:30 p.m., with a needle next to her arm,” said Rumford. “Her lips were blue, I gave her mouth to mouth, CPR.”

23-year-old Kacie Rumford died inside her Kennett Square home, last month, from a heroin overdose.

(Andy Rumford, Credit: CBS)

(Andy Rumford, Credit: CBS)

“Life will never be the same, ever,” said Kacie’s father. “It’s a piece of your heart that’s ripped out. It will never come back.”

Her parents have tied a blue ribbon around a tree in the front yard.  They say it represents a life cut short by what was contained in those blue baggies.

There’s also sign near the mailbox; a reminder to anyone who drives by, that heroin kills, and often times young people in the suburbs are the victims.

“Our biggest problem is Philly,” said Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan.  “They’ve got some of the purest, cheapest heroin in the country.”

Hogan says more than 20 people died from heroin overdoses in Chester County last year.

Earlier this week Hogan announced the arrest of 10 suspected local heroin dealers.

“We need to be more responsive,” said Hogan. “We need to figure out ways to shut down chester county and keep our children safe.”

Kacie’s parents hope to save others by sharing their daughter’s story. They say Kacie was a smart, beautiful, loving young woman who had an addiction she couldn’t beat.

For the warning signs of heroin addiction and for more on Kacie’s story go to kaciescause.com.

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