LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The new U.S. attorney is asking everyone to dig through their medicine cabinets in order to safely dispose of expired or unused prescription drugs this weekend.

“What we’re talking about today is an internal threat,” said Russell Coleman, the recently appointed U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Kentucky. “It is the equivalent of a loaded gun sitting in your medicine cabinet.”

Coleman made the announcement along with local, state and federal leaders in downtown Louisville on Friday ahead of Saturday's National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day. Coleman said this effort supports President Donald Trump declaring the opioid crisis a public health emergency, urging all offices to fight the crisis with every resource available.

“The Commonwealth is top three,” Coleman said. “We’re No. 3 in the nation for overdose deaths. I can tell you on behalf of the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the men and women of this office find that unacceptable.”

The DEA has hosted drug take-back events since 2010. During the last nationwide event in April, the DEA seized 450 tons of prescription drugs. LMPD Chief Steve Conrad said more than 100 pounds of that came from Louisville.

Coleman said the goal is to cut access off to prescription drugs in order to prevent kids from ever becoming addicted to pill and eventually heroin.

“Sadly, young people are first exposed to drug dealers not in the traditional way often times we view drug dealers, but by their medicine cabinets,” he said.

On Saturday, anyone can drop off expired or unwanted prescription medication at 12 different sites in metro Louisville. There are a total of 74 sites across Kentucky and southern Indiana. This is anonymous and no questions will be asked. The DEA warns, though, it cannot accept liquids or needles.

The U.S. attorney hopes that parents will take the initiative to clean out their medicine cabinets in order to protect their children. He also urges parents to use the event as a chance to educate their children.

“Only about 23 percent of parents, the data shows, are talking to their kids about drug addiction about what might become of them, about how their lives might be destroyed,” Coleman said.

There are other resources available outside Saturday’s event. At Friday’s announcement, the commissioner for Kentucky State Police announced KSP will add one drop-off location to each of its 16 districts. And the Jefferson County Sheriff reminded everyone that there is a drop-off box located in the downtown Louisville Sheriff’s office on the sixth floor. It is open Monday through Friday during regular business hours.

Metro Police and Metro Public Works will host a free drug toss and paper shredding event from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center, Lot W/Phillips Lane.

Click here for information about seven drug disposal locations in Jefferson County.  

Click here for prescription drug take back locations in Kentucky. 

Click here and enter your zip code for a take back location closest to you in Kentucky or Indiana. 

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