SoCal Connected Investigates Prescription Pill Addiction Sweeping America




Episode Airs Feb. 17 at 9 p.m.


Los Angeles, CA - February 15, 2012 - In a special investigation, SoCal Connected correspondent Michael Okwu reports on the fastest-growing drug problem in the nation. An encore presentation of "RX Danger" airs Friday, Feb. 17 at 9 p.m. on KCET.


With the death toll continuing to climb, the abuse of prescription drugs has now overtaken car accidents as the leading cause of accidental deaths in America, causing more fatalities than cocaine and heroin combined.


Correspondent Michael Okwu interviews a Palm Desert mother whose son, despite warning pharmacists and doctors about his prescription pill addiction, died from an overdose. Okwu then speaks with a group of recovering young people from Orange County who share their own stories and are eager to warn others of the risk.  He also accompanies an undercover investigator to the downtown streets of Los Angeles to see how easy it is to buy pills on the black market.


A new study by the Justice Department finds that nearly half of teenagers surveyed think prescription drugs are safer than street drugs.  Tune-in this Friday to learn how law enforcement is tackling the issue and what parents can do to protect their teens. 


Correspondent Michael Okwu reports. The producer is Rebecca Haggerty.  The Executive Producer of SoCal Connected is Bret Marcus. Co-Executive Producer is Justine Schmidt. Anchor is Val Zavala.


SoCal Connected airs Friday, February 17th at 9 p.m. with encore airings on Saturdays at 6 p.m., Sundays at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m., and Mondays at 10 p.m.


About SoCal Connected

SoCal Connected, winner of the Peabody and duPont-Columbia awards, 14 Emmy® Awards, 15 Golden Mikes, 18 LA Press Club Awards, the Edward R. Murrow Award for Best News Documentary and Los Angeles Magazine's "Best New Local TV Program" of 2009, airs Fridays (9 p.m.), with encores Saturdays (6 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.), Sundays (1 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.) and (6:30 p.m.-7 p.m.)  and Mondays (10 p.m. - 10:30 p.m.) exclusively on KCET. For more information, to view episodes online or to post comments, please visit http://www.socalconnected.org. 


SoCal Connected is made possible through the generous support of The Ahmanson Foundation, serving the Los Angeles community since 1952; Jim and Anne Rothenberg; The Maddocks-Brown Foundation; The Elizabeth Hofert-Dailey Trust; The John Randolph Haynes & Dora Haynes Foundation; The City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs and UCLA.


Press Contacts

Nick Jones or Liza Nedelman, MPRM Communications:

(323) 933-3399 // njones@mprm.com, lnedelman@mprm.com

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