In Sullivan County in upstate New York, police found three people unconscious in a car in a parking lot. In a separate incident, the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office says officers confiscated fentanyl laced marijuana. And in yet another incident, first responders in Knox, NY had to revive three more people who had overdosed on the polydrug in the middle of a road. Putting two and two together, multiple police departments in upstate are putting out a warning that fentanyl laced marijuana is on the street. But police don’t yet know how much, or its source.
Multiple Fentanyl Laced Weed Incidents Prompt Police Warning in Upstate NY
On Monday, Sullivan County police officers confiscated marijuana from a Walmart parking lot in Thompson, NY. After lab testing, forensic specialists determined that the confiscated weed tested positive for fentanyl, the AP reports.
The deputy on the scene said he noticed suspicious behavior. A car had parked itself the wrong way, directly in the middle of the crosswalk leading to the Walmart entrance. When the officer approached, the driver allegedly became belligerent and ran inside the store.
When police apprehending the driver, a 22-year-old man from Bloomingburg, they found him in possession of seven grams of weed that later tested positive for fentanyl.
Sullivan County Sheriff Michael Schiff said his department has “been on the lookout for about a year.” But this is the first confirmed case of fentanyl laced weed in Sullivan County, Schiff said in press release.
“This is the stuff that is causing the majority of the overdoses,” Schiff added. “They are mixing fentanyl with heroin, cocaine and now marijuana.”
With the presence of fentanyl laced weed confirmed, Sheriff’s offices across upstate New York are warning the public about the potentially deadly drug combination.
How Dangerous is Fentanyl Laced Weed?
Fentanyl is a powerful and highly addictive synthetic opioid. The drug is a form of morphine, only 50 to 100 times more potent. Doctors prescribe fentanyl as a prescription painkiller, but the drug is also available illegally. Synthetic opioids like fentanyl are currently the most common cause of drug-related overdose deaths in the United States. They are the chemicals behind the ongoing opioid epidemic.
But lacing marijuana with fentanyl is relatively uncommon. Still, the situation can be extremely dangerous and sometimes fatal for cannabis consumers, since they generally aren’t looking for a hard drug experience.
Opioids, heroin and prescription painkillers can all show up in marijuana polydrug combinations. These laced combinations with depressants will significantly increase weed’s sedative and euphoric effects, for obvious reasons. Depressants can also make the overall high feel way more intense and long-lasting.
But fentanyl’s extreme potency makes it very easy to consume too much, especially when laced with weed. Hence all the people cops are finding passed out in their cars.