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Alarming heroin overdoses plague one central Indiana community

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By Marisela Burgos

CONNERSVILLE, Ind. (Oct. 7, 2014)-- The Connersville Police Chief is requesting help with a growing heroin problem after 20 people overdosed in the last 21 days.

Connersville Police Chief David Counceller said most of the drug problem is happening in Connersville. He noticed that some of the recent cases were in the county. Chief Counceller said part of the problem can be attributed to out-of-town/out-of-state dealers passing through the area.

“People don’t realize the police department can only do so much and we need the public’s help. This is kind of an outcry –a plea,” Chief Counceller said.

Of the 20 people who overdosed, five of them died.

Kelly Robinson said her nephew, Andrew Hilsky, overdosed on heroin on September 25. Robinson said Hilsky, 24, was found behind a home. He was staying with a friend. Robinson said Hilsky had recently completed rehab. She said her nephew struggled with drugs, since he was 19. She said her family tried to help him. She believes he had recently started experimenting with heroin.

“I was very angry and it’s so easy to be mad at the addict and the system and everything else, but then I wanted a change. I wanted his name to mean something,” Robinson said.

Because of what happened to her nephew, Robinson organized a meeting that will take place on Thursday. The public is invited and the police department will attend. The meeting will be held at the White Water River Campgrounds at 1 p.m.

“I know there (are) so many people in this town that are struggling and there (are) so many people that are willing to lend a hand,” Robinson said.

Chief Counceller said he is searching for solutions to slow down the growing heroin problem. He said he does not want anyone else to die because of it.

“This is about the worst I’ve seen in my career and I’ve been here (more than) 34 years,” Chief Counceller said.

Robinson said she is planning a rally too, in order to stand up against heroin. She said she wants people to remember her nephew for who he was and for how he died.

“I want people to remember ..(to) look at him and say this was a good kid that turned out this way and it could be me,” Robinson said.