Prescription Drug Thieves Target Open Houses

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Home sellers are sure to lock up their jewelry and other valuables before an open house.

But what about prescription drugs?

As prescription drug abuse rises, people are finding creative ways to get their hands on them. That includes raiding medicine cabinets and nightstands during public open houses.

San Diego County law enforcement, drug treatment centers and real estate agents have launched the Safe Homes Coalition to fight the growing trend.

“Young people in particular are using prescription drugs to get high. Some move on to heroin because it gives a similar high and is a lot cheaper,” District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis said at a news conference Tuesday.

According to Dumanis, cases involving prescription drugs went up 84 percent in the last five years.

The coalition recommends putting prescription drugs inside the trunk of a car during an open house.

The San Diego Association of Realtors will have special bags in all of their offices countywide. The bags include instructions on how to properly store or dispose of prescription drugs.

Anyone with unwanted prescription drugs can drop them off at 24 drop boxes around the county.

March is Prescription Drug Awareness Month in California.

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