Unprecedented overdose spike slows in Cincinnati

CINCINNATI (AP) — Authorities in the Cincinnati area say an unprecedented spike of overdoses seems to be leveling off after a stunning wave that exhausted first responders.

Newtown Police Chief Thomas Synan, who heads the Hamilton County Drug Coalition task force, says drug overdoses dropped to 10 to 15 a day over the weekend. Emergency rooms Friday reported 174 overdose cases in less than week, although Synan says some of those likely were from causes other than heroin.

He says authorities have seized samples of the heroin being sold for testing, as they try to determine the source. They suspect it was mixed with another drug such as a powerful painkiller or animal tranquilizer.

Communities in the neighboring states of Indiana, Kentucky and West Virginia also saw overdose spikes last week.