Mississippi officials: Three opioid-related deaths in first two weeks of 2021 underscores alarming trend for region

Published 6:19 am Tuesday, January 19, 2021

One Mississippi community is sounding the alarm on what could be a rising trend of opioid overdose in the region.

Four opioid-related overdoses — including three deaths — were reported in the first two weeks of 2021, according to a report from the Lafayette County Narcotics Unit.

Between January and September 2020, law enforcement agencies in the Lafeyette-Oxford-University community responded to 11 overdoses.

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According to a statement from Metro Narcotics leader Alex Fauver, the trends seen in late 2020 and now in early 2021 include prescription pills, such as hydrocodone, percocet and xanax, being pressed with Fentanyl. Fentanyl has also been found in meth, heroine and ecstasy in Lafayette County.

“The human body can only withstand a small microgram dose of Fentanyl,” Oxford Police Chief Jeff McCutchen said of the problem in September 2020. “Cross-contamination of any drug laced with Fentanyl can be deadly and that is not a risk worth taking.”

The Mississippi Good Samaritan Law protects someone from prosecution when they call 911 for themselves or someone else when medical attention is required. OPD asks the community to contact them if someone has any information about narcotics use or distribution in Lafayette County. The Metro Narcotics Unit can be contacted at 662-236-3900.