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Personal Information Made Public at Local Dump Site

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WAKE FOREST — A WRAL viewer stumbled onto what hethought was just a trash dump in thewoods near Wake Forest. A closer look revealed there was much more to it.Now pharmacists and several Wake County sheriff's deputies are concernedabout the strange pile of trash.

It's just a little spot off N.C. 98 near Wake Forest. But a closerlook might surprise you. It's pharmaceutical trash: empty vials of everything from antihistamines to Valium. There's little evidence thatthe vial contained any drugs. But personal patient informationis everywhere.

Most of the prescriptions came from a Wake Forest Revco drug store. Thefind has many customers, including Hattie Canady, concerned. Canady saysa little information can go a long way, especially when it comes topersonal information such as a social security number.

Pharmacist Bryan Blalock says he's surprised and alarmed that so muchwaste fromhis store ended up in the woods. Normally, all medical waste isdisposed of in a special dumpster that is picked up once a week.

A closer look revealed the dumpster had many of the same items found in the woods. Back in the woods, Wake County Sheriff's deputies arrived toinvestigate. They know what someone could do with personal information,such as transferring a prescription to another store.

The sheriff's department wants to know who put all the prescription trashin the woods. Pharmacy customers are just wondering who knows theirpersonal medical information.

The story may sound familiar. A few weeks ago, similar troubles werereported in the Wilson area. Sheriff's deputies say they think someone isgoing through the trash, desperately looking for an instant high.

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