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The heroin epidemic has been hitting the streets of Cleveland unusually hard – especially in the last few weeks.

The reason might be as simple as supply and demand.

The good news is that police are doing a great job of getting heroin off the streets.

But as a result, some drug experts say the supply is dropping -- sending addicts just about anywhere to get the drug.

"Penny" is a former heroin addict who knows all about the desperation of finding the drug -- no matter how unpure it is.

"God, it's just the way the sickness hits you. Your body is shaking. You're in pain all over -- pain you never felt before," said "Penny."

It's that desperation that may have driven six people to fatally overdose over the weekend in Cuyahoga County.

And a week before that, 21 people in Lorain County overdosed on heroin possibly laced with the deadly narcotic fentanyl.

"The scary thing is, when they hear what happened in Lorain, all they hear is, 'That's where the good dope is. I'm going there.' That's the nature of the beast," said Roger Lowe with the Needle Exchange Program.

Roger and his colleague Chico Lewis fear that the 27 missing addicts that they track have died within the last two weeks.

"There was a big bust on the East Side which basically took all the heroin away, so now people are supplementing with other things," said Lowe.

"Anything to make a quick buck because there are a lot of addicts out there, and they've got to have it on a daily basis," said Lewis.

As for "Penny," she's been sober for 10 months but worries about those who are still hooked.

"There aren't any words to describe what would make somebody that desperate to go out and do any drug that somebody is calling heroin," she said.

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