BROWNSVILLE, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Earlier this week, three people died, and several others were hospitalized, from drug overdoses in Cameron County. The Brownsville Police Department posted a warning about fentanyl-laced drugs to social media.
Brownsville Police said the problem of fentanyl-contaminated drugs had been an issue in other parts of the country for a while. But now, it’s starting to hit home.
“It was mostly like in bigger cities, like Chicago and Houston, but not here in the Valley,” Brownsville Police Department Public Information Officer Abril Luna said. “And that’s why, now that it’s being more prevalent here, we wanted to alert the public about that.”
Luna said people often do not decide to take fentanyl. She said they were taking other drugs, and didn’t realize those narcotics were tainted.
“Drugs don’t come with an ingredient list, right? So, you can’t really know if this batch of cocaine has fentanyl. Or if this batch of Xanax pills contains fentanyl,” she said.
Luna said it was difficult to crack down on fentanyl specifically because it’s mixed with other drugs. She said drug dealers may not even know, or care, they’re selling fentanyl-laced drugs, as long as they’re making money.
She said that when it came to prescription drugs, buying them on the black market greatly increased the risk of suffering drug poisoning.
“If you’re in need of actual medicine, then you need to go to your doctor and get it prescribed over the counter. You know, something that’s FDA approved, and not something off the streets.”, Luna said.
Luna said teenagers and young people were more likely to experiment with drugs. But, she said, they didn’t know that one pill, one substance, could kill them. She said the recent deaths were a reminder that fentanyl-laced drugs could come from anywhere.
“These drugs are coming from all over the country,” Luna said. “Somebody could have bought something that was contaminated with fentanyl, and obviously, they don’t know what it’s contaminated with.”
Luna said that police were being more active in searching for and seizing narcotics. Harlingen Police arrested a man who they believe sold or gave the cocaine laced with fentanyl.