MANKATO, Minn. – A rash of fatal overdoses has law enforcement warning the public about opioid abuse.
The Minnesota River Valley Drug Task Force says it has been involved in four death investigations in the Mankato region between September 5 and September 21. The Task Force says the victims ranged in age from 18 to 24 years old and all their deaths appeared to be related to opioid overdoses. In two of the deaths, evidence of counterfeit prescription pills made from deadly fentanyl was located.
Lieutenant Jeff Wersal, Task Force Commander, says numerous other non-fatal overdoses have been reported to law enforcement during the same time period and they believe opioids were also involved in those incidents.
Lt. Wersal says counterfeit pills made of fentanyl are not produced professionally and the fentanyl potency of each pill can vary. He says all the heroin seized in the Mankato area over the past two years was also found to contain fentanyl.
“The public needs to be aware that there are no safe opioids that are not prescribed by a doctor,” says Lt. Wersal. “People need to pay attention to their loved ones and intervene if opioid abuse is suspected before they become victims of an overdose death.”