WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) -They say when it comes to fentanyl, ‘one pill can kill’.
“We have to get these drugs off the street,” said Lt. Jerry Brewer with the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office. “That’s absolutely positive, no if’s, ands, or buts. This is fentanyl, so we have to get it off the street.”
Last week, the Wilmington Police Department arrested two people for trafficking fentanyl and other drugs.
The New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office also made arrests in a drug investigation last week, charging a mother and son.
Investigators say they found more than 6,000 pills containing fentanyl. According to the DEA, that’s enough to kill almost 380,000 people, more than live in the city and county combined.
“Take notice, look at the pills,” said Lt. Brewer. “If you’ve got something that looks like that, get rid of it because it’s fentanyl and it can kill you. These are fake pharmaceuticals.”
The sheriff’s office can’t directly confirm if recent overdoses are related to these drug busts, but it’s not a new trend in the state.
North Carolina saw a 26% increase in deadly overdoses last year, responsible for almost 4,000 deaths.
“We see different drugs coming through the market,” Lt. Brewer says. “We see fentanyl of course, it’s been here for awhile. It’s something we’ve been combatting. Like I said, it’s inexpensive compared to other drugs, so that’s what they go with. Unfortunately, it kills.”
The sheriff’s office says they aren’t taking these cases lightly, and have a stern message for those who are in possession of these drugs.
“Our message is, if you’re dealing pharmaceuticals and dealing fake pharmaceuticals and illegal drugs, we’re coming for you,” said Lt. Brewer. “The sheriff has a unit totally committed to drugs and getting drugs off the street.”
Lt. Brewer stresses that they are reaching out to anyone who may have bought pills on the street, because there’s a good chance they contain fentanyl.
The sheriff’s office has resources available to anyone struggling with addiction.
You can find those resources and groups that they are apart of for addiction help on the New Hanover County Sheriff’s website.
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