LPD Sergeant Worries A Needle Exchange Is A Bad Idea

Nov 2, 2016

Credit Steve Burns / WTIU

The sergeant who oversees the Lafayette Police Department’s street crimes unit says he’s worried creating a needle exchange program will flood Tippecanoe County with heroin addicts.

“That word gets out and everyone says 'oh we can go to Tippecanoe County and we can get free needles' and then they come here and don’t leave," Adam Mellady says.

Mellady says he also worries adopting the needle exchange program is against at least the spirit of state law.

“I kind of feel if we’re going to allow that needle exchange we’re violating state law because possession of that syringe is a felony,” Mellady says.

Mellady insists the department has had success combating heroin in the area with tips from the department’s hotline, as well as relying on pedestrian and officer observations. 

On Monday, November 21st, the county commissioners will discuss whether to start a so-called “syringe services program” in Tippecanoe County.

The West Lafayette Police Department could not be reached for comment.