Police Hosting Anonymous Pill Disposal

Residents can safely dispose of unwanted and expired prescription drugs on Saturday at the Newport Coast Community Center.

Patch file photo
Patch file photo
Police are urging residents to drop off unwanted pills at a collection site on Saturday in order to prevent drug theft and abuse.

From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday at the Newport Coast Community Center, the Newport Beach Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration will give residents the chance to get rid of expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs from their homes. The collection is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

According to police, the medication collection addresses a vital public safety and public health issue because "medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse and abuse."

Flushing medicines down the toilet or throwing them in the trash both pose potential safety and health hazards, police reported.

More than 7 million people aged 12 and older abused prescription drugs in 2010, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Nearly one in five teens has taken a prescription medication to get high, without having his or her own prescription, reports DrugFree.org.

In its six previous collection events, DEA and its partners took in over 2.8 million pounds—nearly 1,400 tons—of pills.

The Newport Coast Community Center, 6401 San Joaquin Hills Road, Newport Coast.

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