- Associated Press - Saturday, January 30, 2016

HILLIARD, Ohio (AP) - Police in central Ohio are blaming the state’s heroin epidemic for a recent uptick in burglaries.

Authorities in Columbus and surrounding suburbs are urging car owners to keep their vehicles locked and valuables elsewhere.

WBNS-TV reports (http://bit.ly/1Uq5lez ) several residents of a normally quiet apartment complex in suburban Hilliard found their car windows smashed after a string of break-ins the last week.

Heinz von Eckartsberg (h-EYE-nz von EK-arts-berg), police chief in nearby Dublin, says many people arrested for property crimes such as burglaries are linked to heroin addiction.

Dublin hosted a town hall meeting in December to talk with residents about the drug epidemic.

A record 1,177 people died of heroin-related overdoses in Ohio in 2014, up from 986 in 2013.

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