by: Richard Elliot Updated:
DOUGLAS COUNTY, Ga. - The father of a metro Atlanta teenager who died after using synthetic marijuana is now working to get all illegal drugs off the streets, and he's found a unique way to do it.
Dakota Dyer, 14, committed suicide in March after ingesting synthetic marijuana for the first and only time. His father, Lance Dyer, formed a foundation dedicated to ridding the community of illicit drugs.
He gets old mailboxes from the U.S. Postal Service, paints
them, and offers them to law enforcement agencies free of charge to be used as drug drop-off boxes.
"We looked at a way of trying to give back to the community with the foundation we formed in my son's name," said Dyer as he delivered one of the mailboxes to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. "They're placed inside sheriff's offices like this one in Douglas County. It's
24 hours and it's secure."
Sgt. Jesse Hambrick of the Douglas County Sheriff's Office said the box is primarily for prescription drugs left behind after someone dies or no longer needs them. He said the problem of illegal prescription drugs usage is almost as bad as the meth problem in his county.
"A lot of these pills wind up in people's hands that shouldn't have them," said Hambrick. "What this gives, it makes it convenient for people to come and get rid of their medications."
Hambrick also said it will accept other drugs without question.
Lance Dyer has delivered eight
mailboxes to law enforcement agencies so far, though he said he has orders from 73 others from as far away as Memphis, Tenn., and Seminole County, Fla.
"I like to think as (Dakota) looks down, he's smiling," said Dyer. "That's our way of trying to give back to the men and women of law enforcement that gave so much to us when we needed their help."