L-R: Portage Co. Sheriff Mike Lukas, Sharalee Simkins, a records specialist for the Plover Police Department, and Stevens Point Police Lt. Dana Williams, during the 2020 Drug Tack Back event. (Metro Wire photo)

Drug take-back event up from 2019

By Brandi Makuski

The county’s three law enforcement departments shipped out 1,800 pounds of leftover and outdated drugs on Monday. 

It’s an uptick from recent years, when the Portage Co. Sheriff’s Office, and police departments in Stevens Point and Plover, previously collected about 1,500 pounds in 2018 and 2019.

Collection boxes at the three departments are always available to the public to discard unwanted and leftover prescription and over-the-counter pills, creams, ointments, and other medicines.

All three departments typically hold a special Drug Take-Back day each spring and fall, encouraging residents to drop off old prescription and OTC medicines before they can be abused or improperly discarded in the water supply.

Due to COVID most of the events were canceled this year, but the Stevens Point Police Department did hold a take-back event at the Lincoln Center on Saturday. 

In 2019, Wisconsin ranked second in the nation for over-the-counter and prescription drug collection, according to State Attorney General Josh Kaul.

The drugs were boxed up and transported to an out-of-state facility for incineration, according to Sheriff Mike Lukas.