A disturbing report on the rise of heroin use by teenagers in America's suburbs has some parents and educators worried. They're alarmed that seemingly normal teens are becoming addicted to the deadly drug.
Residents at a town hall meeting in a suburb of Washington state recently received a startling revelation. Close to 50 kids at one high school were addicted to heroin.
"To walk into your son's room and see him and friends with needles," said one parent of a heroin addict. "It's gut wrenching."
Gone are the days when marijuana reigned. Heroin is now the drug of choice for many teens in suburbs across America.
Cities and towns in Utah, Kansas, even rural Wisconsin are reporting a record number of overdoses.
Drug enforcement officials said dealers even put the logos of popular films like "Twilight" on heroin bags or give it away for free in the suburbs just to get kids hooked -- knowing that once they're addicted, they will come back for more.
"Yep, you could buy one of these bags for $5," said John Gilbridge, a special agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Oxycontin, another popular drug among teens, has been harder to get because of stricter Food and Drug Administration guidelines.
Heroin is easier to get and it's stronger. Most heroin was about 3 percent pure in the 1970's. Today's drug is at least 60 percent pure or higher -- something that makes kicking the habit even harder.
The DEA said the problem of teen drug abuse must be confronted by parents, educators as well as the faith community.