Pubdate: Fri, 01 Sep 2017
Source: Windsor Star (CN ON)
Copyright: 2017 The Windsor Star
Author: Trevor Wilhelm
Page: A3


A new super-powered drug fuelling a deadly opioid epidemic across
Canada has claimed its first Windsor victim.

Windsor police confirmed Thursday that a person found dead on the
front porch of a downtown house died from a carfentanil overdose.

"Carfentanil is designed to tranquilize extremely large animals," said
Sgt. Steve Betteridge. "It is not designed for human consumption. This
is an example of what human consumption will do to you. This is an
extremely dangerous drug."

Carfentanil is a synthetic opioid that is 100 times more powerful that
fentanyl, 4,000 times more powerful than heroin and 10,000 times more
potent than morphine. It's used to tranquilize elephants. A few
milligrams can be lethal to humans.

Officers were called to a house in the 700 block of Dougall Avenue
shortly before 8 a.m. on June 9. They found a person dead on the porch
with a white powdery substance nearby. Police refused to give any
details Thursday about the person, including a gender.

After finding the powder, police shut down the street. Officers in
hazmat suits collected some of the powder and sent it to Health Canada
for analysis. The testing revealed it was methamphetamine and oxycodone.

Police recently received confirmation from the coroner that the cause
of death was a drug overdose. Investigators also learned that along
with methamphetamine, there was an "extremely large dose of
carfentanil" in the person's system. This is the first case of a fatal
carfentanil overdose documented by Windsor police. Before June,
Windsor police had never even seized it.

While this is the first discovery of the drug in Windsor, it has been
a scourge in other parts of the country, killing people in increasing
numbers. The potent drug can be injected, but also accidentally
ingested or inhaled if it gets into the air.

"These illicit drugs are extremely dangerous," said Betteridge.
"Carfentanil will kill you."

Making the drug even more frightening is that users often have no idea
they are taking it.

"Dealers will cut and mix their products and users may not even be
aware of the contents," said Betteridge. "It's almost a Russian
roulette situation. You don't know for sure what you are buying."

Anyone with more information about this case or carfentanil in the
Windsor area can call police at 519-255-6700, ext. 4361 or Crime
Stoppers at 519-258-8477 (TIPS). You can also leave tips online at
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