Press Release​

Sheriff’s Office, Carrboro PD, and Safekids Orange County Host Operation Medicine Drop in Carrboro on October 24


Hillsborough, NC (October 22, 2020) – This Saturday, October 24, the Orange County Sheriff's Office, the Carrboro Police Department, and Safekids Orange County will participate in  Operation Medicine Drop (OMD), a national prescription drug take-back event. Deputies and officers will be in the Harris Teeter parking lot in Carrboro from 10 am to noon hosting a drive by drug drop-off event.


OMD is a FREE drug take-back program that gives people a safe and secure way to dispose of unwanted, over-the counter, and prescription medications. On average, four people per day die from overdose in North Carolina, with 79% of those deaths involving some type of opioid.


Safekids Orange County (NC) is one of more than 400 coalition members of Safekids Worldwide, a non-profit dedicated to keeping kids safe from preventable injuries, the number one killer of children in the United States.  An OMD event provides a free, convenient, no-questions asked way for people to discard expired, unwanted, or excess medication, thus reducing the risk to children and youth.


Young children often consume prescription or over-the-counter medication when they come across it in the trash, on a parent’s night table, in a purse, or on a shelf in the kitchen or bathroom. Addictive prescription drugs, often painkillers, remaining after a person recovers from a surgery or illness, are a particularly dangerous problem. “Unfortunately, this kind of medicine is often stolen from our homes, or it is abused or sold by family members or visitors,” said Orange County Sheriff Blackwood. “We are participating in this collection on Saturday to provide a convenient option for the community to make their homes safer.”


Studies conducted by the DEA found that 9.9 million Americans misused controlled prescription drugs in 2018. Most of the abused medications were obtained by family or friends, and found in a home medicine cabinet. Said Blackwood, “During this time when children are learning at home and participating less in extra-curricular activities, they are at greater risk of finding or experimenting with excess medications long forgotten by parents.”


“Operation Medicine Drop is a perfect pandemic activity,” said Sergeant Daniel Roberson of the Community Services Division at the Orange County Sheriff’s Office. “People are interested in cleaning and decluttering their homes. Taking the medicine to the OMD event provides a safe, appropriate reason to get out of the house, and this is a great opportunity to model a life skill for children. Too many people just hang onto leftover medicine, but it is simply not safe to do so. Once medication is no longer needed, people should safely dispose of it. We are happy to partner with the Carrboro Police and Safekids Orange County to provide such an opportunity.”


If Saturday is not convenient, the Sheriff’s Office and the Carrboro Police Department both have a drug drop box available in their lobbies accessible to the public during business hours Monday-Friday.



Hillsborough, NC (October 21, 2020) –  Attorney General Josh Stein presented Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood with  a Dogwood Award today to recognize the work he has done to combat the opioid epidemic in North Carolina, specifically highlighting Orange County’s Coordinated Opioid Overdose Reduction Effort, a program known as COORE.


“Sheriff Charles Blackwood’s COORE initiative is making a real difference in Orange County’s efforts to confront the opioid epidemic,” said Attorney General Josh Stein. “I am proud to partner with Sheriff Blackwood on this important work to help get people suffering from addiction out of the criminal justice system and into the health care system, where they belong.”


The COORE initiative brings together the Orange County Sheriff’s Office, the Orange County Criminal Justice Resource Department, Orange County Emergency Management Services, Freedom House, and local police departments. Under the program, people can dispose of drugs and drug paraphernalia and be guaranteed amnesty.


“I appreciate this award,” said Sheriff Blackwood, “and I share it with a great team of dedicated professionals who work with COORE to provide program recipients the support they need as they transition back to successful functioning within our community.  We have an excellent partnership.”


Attorney General Stein created the Dogwood Awards in 2017 to honor North Carolinians who are dedicated to keeping people safe, healthy, and happy in their communities.  This is the fourth group of Dogwood Award recipients.

Sheriff Blackwood added, “I encourage people to review the accomplishments of the other members of the 2020 Dogwood group. I am humbled to be in their (virtual) company.”


Look for a complete list of recipients on the North Carolina Department of Justice website.

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