WASHINGTON -- Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown and a group of Democratic senators introduced legislation Tuesday that seeks to give law enforcement more tools to battle skyrocketing prescription drug thefts.

Ohio is second only to Florida in the number of oxycodone prescriptions filled, and Ohio's death rate from unintentional drug poisoning increased more than 350 percent from 1999 to 2008, Brown's office said. In 2007, unintentional drug poisoning surpassed motor vehicle crashes and suicide as the leading cause of death in Ohio.

The "rising rate of thefts of these drugs, theft that fuels the black market, enables armed robbery and endangers public safety," said Brown, a Mansfield native.

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