ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Orange County Sheriff John Mina said they are finding fentanyl in just about every type of street drug now, including cannabis.
The sheriff’s office showed side-by-side photos of what look like two Xanax and two Oxycontin pills, but what the pictures show is how hard it is to tell which pill is the real one, and which is a fake pill containing fentanyl. They are the same size and even have similar markings.
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”We’re finding fentanyl mixed into almost every single drug out there,” Sheriff Mina said.
He told News 6 the discoveries are expanding into different substances, including marijuana.
“We found fentanyl in cannabis, and you know, everyone thinks that cannabis and marijuana are not lethal,” Mina said. However, if they contain fentanyl, he said it could kill someone.
Mina said they are seeing a dangerous trend of drug dealers taking fentanyl and making it look like a pressed pill.
According to the medical examiner’s office, there were 541 accidental drug deaths containing fentanyl between Orange and Osceola county in 2021.
The sheriff’s office said of their 256 overdose deaths last year, 206 were fentanyl-related.
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But Sheriff Mina told News 6, their numbers are actually down 25% from the prior year, and he attributes it to a number of things like educational campaigns and the prevalence of naloxone or Narcan.
Sheriff Mina said deputies are trained to help save someone having an overdose by administering Narcan.
And in 2022, Orange County deputies deployed Narcan 81 times, down from 124 times in 2021.
As the sheriff’s office continues with their educational campaign, Sheriff Mina said they make it a priority to stay on top of new drug trends.
“We’re always on top of that and we’re always looking to keep up with all the different trends out there and really push that out there,” Mina said.
Sheriff Mina said education is key and they are now focusing on social media to reach people.
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