Once the bottles are filled, the drugs inside have the ability to become more than what they were intended for.
"This is not just a public safety issue anymore, it's a public health issue as well. We've got the second fastest growing drug problem in the United States of America," said executive director of the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics, Marshall Fisher.
Fisher says 95 percent of drug overdose deaths in Mississippi are from the abuse of prescription narcotics. Last month alone, more than nine million doses of Hydrocodone were dispensed in the state. With a population of only about three million, Fisher says that's a problem and it's lending itself to increased abuse.
"With prescription drugs it some how legitimizes it because it's in a prescription bottle, it's got a label on it, there's a pharmacy's name, a doctor's name and it doesn't have the same stigma as going into an ally way or street corner and buying a bad of dope from some thug," said Fisher.
Fisher says the abuse, from those with or without legal prescriptions, is also leading to criminal activity. That was the scene Monday night inside a Petal pharmacy as thieves broke in, racked up and took off with all kinds of prescription drugs.
A collective effort is now underway from various agencies across the state that has folks discussing drug diversion problems and evaluating prevention strategies. That was the focus behind the Prescription Drug Summit which was held Wednesday in Jackson.
"It's something that we can stop and we need to address it as a high priority in our state," said U.S. Attorney for Mississippi's Southern District, Gregory Davis.
Davis says criminal activity isn't the only side effect. Deaths are rising, and more and more babies are being born with complications and having to be treated for withdrawal syndromes. That's all because of a system, which Fisher says, was meant to help.
"There are legitimate drugs out there for legitimate reasons but if they're not used for their intended purpose the level of addiction is unbelievable," said Fisher.
Thursday, May 23 2013 9:13 PM EDT2013-05-24 01:13:14 GMT
Two elementary school girls were allegedly sexually assaulted by another female student. One incident happening while the two girls were at school. Two mothers are now speaking out about their daughters.More >>
Two Jackson mothers are speaking out after they say their daughters were sexually assaulted by another female student. One of the incidents allegedly happened at school.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 7:31 PM EDT2013-05-23 23:31:22 GMT
The pastor and members of a Jefferson county church make the gruesome discovery of a body on the way to Bible study Wednesday evening. Sheriff Peter Walker said a woman's body was found just before 6:30More >>
Jefferson County Sheriff Peter Walker has identified the woman found dead in the cemetery of East Mount Olive Baptist Church Wednesday night.
Thursday, May 23 2013 7:05 PM EDT2013-05-23 23:05:30 GMT
A Jackson Public School district principal has had her license suspended for one year. Dr. Lisa Andrus-Johnson is the principal at Watkins Elementary school.A spokesperson for the Mississippi DepartmentMore >>
A Jackson Public School district principal has had her license suspended for one year. Dr. Lisa Andrus-Johnson is the principal at Watkins Elementary school.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 7:34 PM EDT2013-05-23 23:34:55 GMT
Chokwe Lumumba covered a wide range of issues in a one-on-one interview Wednesday evening. Lumumba is the winner of the Democratic Primary runoff for mayor of Jackson and he has a strong chance to winMore >>
Chokwe Lumumba covered a wide range of issues in a one-on-one interview Wednesday. Lumumba is the winner of the Democratic Primary runoff for mayor of Jackson and he has a strong chance to win the June fourth general election.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 8:00 PM EDT2013-05-24 00:00:32 GMT
We've taken numerous calls from taxpayers who are still waiting on their state tax refund. Three on your side went straight to the source to find out why. While 75% of the refund checks have been mailedMore >>
Mississippi's state income tax refunds are a little slow this year. While 75% of the refund checks have been mailed out, thousands of Mississippians are still waiting.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 6:45 PM EDT2013-05-23 22:45:01 GMT
(WMC-TV) - A baby fights to survive at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital in critical condition after being hit by an SUV with his mother behind the wheel, according to police. An orange circle marks the pointMore >>
A baby fights to survive at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital in critical condition after being hit by an SUV with his mother behind the wheel, according to police.More >>
Thursday, May 23 2013 5:38 PM EDT2013-05-23 21:38:18 GMT
The picture of a George County dog set on fire is disturbing. Authorities say the circumstances surrounding how fire consumed the dog are shocking. According to George County Sheriff Dean Howell, 20-year-oldMore >>
Socks, the dog reportedly burned this week by his owner, has died. That word comes from a George County Sheriff's deputy. Socks succumbed to injuries suffered after 20-year-old Brandon Pierce allegedly set his dog on fire Tuesday night. The suspect told deputies he torched the dog because he "wanted to help the dog go to heaven."More >>