Minneapolis has seen 65 overdoses in 9 days, one of them fatal

Alerts have been issued by law enforcement across the metro.
Publish date:

UPDATE 3:30 P.M.

Following alerts in St. Paul and Washington County, Minneapolis Police Department has now said it has seen a spike in overdoses over the past few weeks.

MPD said it has seen 65 overdoses in the space of 9 days as well as 50 ODs – one of them fatal – in the wake May 28-June 3.

Of those 50, 15 of them happened on Sunday alone, including the fatality.

"This is an all-time weekly high of drug overdoses in the City of Minneapolis," a police spokesman said.

There have been multiple types of drugs causing the ODs, including counterfeit oxycontin, "potent heroin" and "additional unknown substances."

"It is nearly impossible to attribute the entirety of this spike to just one source and all illicit drugs bought on the street should be considered dangerous and have the potential to contain powerful opiates such as fentanyl or carfentanyl."

On Sunday, there were 10 ODs reported in a 9-hour timeframe that were related to heroin, including the suspected death on the 2200 block of 3rd Avenue South.

Original story

Law enforcement in the east Twin Cities metro are growing increasingly concerned about a spike of serious and fatal overdoses in recent weeks.

Both St. Paul Police Department and the Washington County Sheriff's Office have issued alerts in the past 24 hours after noticing a worrying trend of heroin overdoses, some of which had the potential addition of fentanyl.

In St. Paul, the alert was issued Wednesday after five people overdosed on what is believed to be heroin in the space of just 36 hours.

These happened in four different locations in the city, and police say all five ODs have been linked with a "bad batch" of suspected heroin, meaning it's been laced with other chemicals to make them "even more hazardous and deadly."

It comes just days after six people were found unconscious, many of them not breathing, outside a house in South St. Paul on Saturday after suffering from a suspected opioid overdose.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office says they've seen the "same spike in deadly overdoses" as St. Paul, which it says has led to four deaths in the past two weeks from suspected overdoses.

Two of these deaths happened in a 24-hour period on Tuesday and Wednesday, while the opioid antidote drug Nalaxone has been used four times in the past two weeks for other serious overdoses.

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“Though one death is too many, this spike in overdoses and related deaths is truly concerning, especially considering how significantly it is affecting the young adults in our community," said Washington County Sheriff Dan Starry.

"As with every overdose death, I have directed our Drug Task Force to use every available resource in an attempt to find those responsible for spreading this deadly substance."

Both law enforcement agencies are reminding people that Minnesota has a "Good Samaritan Law" that protects people from prosecution when they act in "good faith" while seeking medical help for someone who is overdosing.

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