OBN discussion

Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics panel speakers answer questions Thursday evening at the High Plains Technology Center following a forum about current drug threats in Oklahoma. Pictured: Craig Williams, Mel Woodrow, and Angie Woodrow. Not pictured: John Scully and Mark Woodward. (Photo by Sarah Nishimuta)

The Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics held a public forum Thursday evening at High Plains Technology Center to discuss current drug threats in Oklahoma and the programs in place to help get drugs off the streets.

A panel of OBN experts took turns discussing the different types of drugs affecting Oklahomans, where they’re coming from, mapping overdoses, and the various programs in place to help combat the problem.

Angie Woodrow, research director, walked the room through the benefits of ODMAP, Overdose Detection Mapping Application Program. This tool has been a fairly recent development, according to Woodrow, and has already seen success in tracking down the source of a cluster of heroin overdoses.

“We got our first real success, but sad success, this past weekend,” Woodrow explained. “We had a spike in overdoses of heroin, we had seven in seven days. So through investigative efforts we were able to track down the individuals… It was the first time that we really saw the ODMAP in action.”

Two of the speakers broke down the many different types of drugs that are active in Oklahoma. The list included prescription drugs but was not limited to opioids. According to Chief Agent Mel Woodrow, methamphetamine is still the worst drug on the street and leading in overdoses.

“Meth is here to stay,” Woodrow said. “It’s our most troublesome drug we out there right now.”

Public Information Office Mark Woodward spoke about the number of programs used to battle the abuse of drugs.

“We’re really proud of a lot of the programs that we have at the Bureau of Narcotics,” Woodward said.

Some of the programs he highlighted included K9 Units and the Drug Take Back program. Old or unused prescriptions can be dropped off at boxes located in the Woodward Sheriff’s Office and the Woodward Police Department.

For more information visit www.ok.gov/obndd/.