Police see increase in heroin use by Indiana youth
There is yet another sign that heroin is on the upswing in central Indiana.
Officers assigned to cutting crime in our neighborhoods say they took down some heroin dealers selling it out of the back of their van.
"It's really powerful. It's really addicting," said a 17-year-old recovering heroin addict, "Neal."
While "Neal" is not his real name, the teen says the problem is all too real. He says more and more teens are choosing heroin to get high and the drug is becoming too common on central Indiana streets.
"It's spreading around Indianapolis and spreading in every direction. A lot of small towns, it's big there, even," Neal said.
Neal is back in school at Hope Academy, a school for students in treatment. Each school year here the number of heroin-addicted teens enrolled in classes has gone up.
Neal's principal has her suspicions why we are seeing an increase in young heroin users.
"They are like, 'Why not?' The fear has gone down is what is alarming to me. They are just not as afraid to try it," said Principal Gale Stone.
Just this week at Boulevard Place and Congress Avenue, Crime Reduction Team officers nabbed three men in a drug sting. Police found thousands of dollars in cash, cocaine and heroin.
Neighborhood Resource Officers like Daniel Brezik helped with the investigation.
"Most of the complaints we get are cocaine-related, but heroin has seen an upturn as of late," said Brezik.
Police say the key to stopping the increase of drugs in your neighborhood, especially heroin, is reporting drug activity, like residents did on Congress Avenue.
As Neal gets his life back on track, he hopes others heed the warning to stay far away from heroin.
"There is a life in recovery, something better than all that," he said.