Deputies respond to Fentanyl overdose in Chippewa County

The Sheriff’s Office is seeing an increase in overdoses directly linked to street drugs with Fentanyl in them.
Published: Apr. 6, 2022 at 12:27 PM EDT
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CHIPPEWA COUNTY, Mich. (WLUC) - Reported to be 50 to 100 times stronger than most drugs, fentanyl is on the rise in Upper Michigan.

The Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office said it has seen a rise in overdoses, busts, and deaths due to the narcotic. With its potency, the Chippewa county sheriff, Mike Bitnar said other challenges arise when responding to an emergency.

“You have to have something like Narcan to bring you out of it, the problem is sometimes it takes many doses of Narcan, if you can bring them back at all if they’ve used Fentanyl,” Bitnar said.

Bitnar said all deputies have the overdose-reversing drug Narcan on them if they respond to an overdose emergency. It is not just Chippewa County, the Michigan State Police said incidents have been increasing across the U.P. Lt. Mark Giannunzio of the Negaunee Post said many are ingesting fentanyl without even knowing it.

“They’re believing that they’re getting one sort of pill, however, that pill is laced with fentanyl and it’s unbeknownst to them they don’t realize that it’s laced with this fentanyl drug and they’re taking this and that’s what’s causing a large majority of these overdoses and deaths,” Giannunzio said.

The Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office responded to an overdose of a 23-year-old woman early this morning. After administering 2 doses of Narcan deputies were able to reverse her overdose. Deputies then discovered that a drug she had taken was laced with fentanyl. Bitnar says while law enforcement is important, the community is also key to helping those struggling.

“We have places in the community like FAN, which is Families Against Narcotics, treatment centers, basically we’re all working together for the same goal, and that is to get our local population who are addicted off of drugs,” Bitnar said.

The Families Against Narcotics of Chippewa county is here.

The Michigan State Police Angels Program information is here.

Last published: Apr 6, 2022 1:38:57 PM

A 23-year-old woman was found unconscious in her car parked near the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office front door just after 10 a.m. Wednesday.

It was reported to the Sheriff’s Office that someone was having a seizure. Deputies arrived on scene and suspected she was overdosing on some type of narcotic.

Deputies immediately called for EMS and Sault Fire was dispatched. They administered two rounds of Narcan. The victim did not respond. The Deputies then lost the pulse on the victim and immediately gave a third round of Narcan. A short time later she had a pulse and started breathing again.

It was found that the victim had taken Heroin which we suspect was cut with Fentanyl.

The Sheriff warns, “If you think it can’t come to your front door, it can.”

Without the immediate response by the Deputy Sheriff’s there is no doubt the victim was within seconds of not making it, the Sheriff’s office said in a Facebook post.

IF YOU THINK IT CAN'T COME TO YOUR FRONT DOOR, IT CAN On 4-6-2022 just after 10 am it was reported to the Sheriff's...

Posted by Chippewa County Sheriff's Office on Wednesday, April 6, 2022

The Chippewa County area is seeing a very high rate of overdose, as many of the street drugs are being cut with Fentanyl, the Sheriff said.

Fentanyl makes it very hard to bring people back from an overdose. The Sheriff’s Office has seen it take multiple rounds of Narcan to bring someone back from a Fentanyl overdose.

If you need help with addiction there are many ways to reach out and get yourself help. Here are just a few:

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