Source: City of Lyndhurst, Ohio


The police departments of Highland Heights, Lyndhurst, Richmond Heights, Mayfield Heights, and Mayfield Village announce the launch of a "Safe Passages Initiative," a program that encourages opioid addicted persons to seek help and can expedite their placement into treatment.

Starting December 19, 2017, persons in these Hillcrest communities suffering from an opioid-related addiction and want help, may walk into any of these Police Departments, Monday through Friday, 8 am to 4 pm, and receive expedited placement into an appropriate detox or treatment program, without fear of arrest.

Persons coming in will be interviewed by a trained department member who has received special training. Paperwork and a short interview will be completed, followed by arrangements for placement with the most appropriate detox or treatment provider. Placement may not be immediate, but is expected to take less than 72 hours.

The Police Departments of Highland Heights, Lyndhurst, Richmond Heights, Mayfield Heights, and Mayfield Village, in 1972, joined together to form a law enforcement partnership known as the Suburban Police Anti-Crime Network (S.P.A.N.). Since then S.P.A.N. has shared training and resources to maximize law enforcement and crime prevention services, while reducing costs. Our "Safe Passages Initiative" is supported by the S.P.A.N. mayors and police chiefs who recognize the need to also provide assistance to those suffering with opioid addiction who are ready to seek help.

The "Safe Passages Initiative" will be overseen by S.P.A.N.’s Drug Enforcement Unit - which will continue to aggressively target drug traffickers who prey on our communities and our residents. Members of the drug enforcement unit recently participated in the inaugural law enforcement summit hosted by PAARI (Police Assisted Addiction and Recovery Initiative) in Boston, MA. "Our officers were able to network and learn best practices from law enforcement professionals who traveled to Boston from 27 different states, sharing with us how they manage and implement their outreach and intake programs." – According to Michael Scipione, Commander of the S.P.A.N. Drug Enforcement Unit.

Similar programs are currently in use by the Berea, Olmsted Township, Bedford, Newburgh Heights and Strongsville Police Departments.

Residents of Highland Heights, Lyndhurst, Richmond Heights, Mayfield Heights, and Mayfield Village, seeking help through the Safe Passages Initiative, may appear at any S.P.A.N. Police Department, Monday – Friday, 8:00 am to 4:00 p.m., or call anytime for more information. We encourage them to bring a friend or family member who supports their path to recovery.