Last year in both North and South Carolina, federal officers seized 18.75 pounds of the synthetic opioid. That’s more than they located the previous two years combined.
At least 2,500 North Carolinians died from fentanyl overdoses last year, according to the latest state data out this month. The data is only through September of 2022 as the state’s Department of Health and Human Services is still processing information for last year so it is likely this number will climb even higher.
The synthetic drug is now a major focus for law enforcement agencies across the state as it continues devastating communities in and families.
Over the last five years, the number of people dying from overdoses increased significantly. Fatal overdoses in North Carolina jumped 66% from 2018, state data shows. Last year, the crisis claimed the lives of more than 4200 people in the state.
“Fentanyl is really the most dangerous thing that we’ve seen in decades,” said Mike Prado, the deputy special agent in charge for Homeland Security Investigations in the Carolinas.
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