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The Front Royal Police Department release this warning
FRONT ROYAL, VA: The Front Royal Police Department would like to notify the public about a recent influx of overdose related calls that have occurred since the beginning of the new year.
In our continued efforts to preserve public safety, we would like to take this opportunity to warn citizens of the presence of especially dangerous opiate drugs inundating our community.
Since January 1, 2021, the Front Royal Police Department and members of the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force (NWVRDTF) have responded to seven suspected drug overdoses, four of which resulted in deaths.
In the past 36 hours, our agency has responded to two overdose related deaths that opiates are suspected to have been used by the victims.
Although these investigations are currently pending, information suggests that the potent and deadly synthetic opiate, fentanyl, may be responsible for these overdoses and corresponding fatalities.
Recent laboratory analyses conducted by the Virginia Department of Forensic Science show that fentanyl is being used in the production of counterfeit pharmaceutical drugs, such as Percocet, thereby deceiving victims into taking potentially lethal doses of the drug.
The presence of Fentanyl has also been found in other illicit street drugs such as cocaine and marijuana.
Data shows that drug overdoses in the Front Royal/Warren County area have been increasing over the past two years.
In 2019, a total of 36 overdoses resulting in injury or death were reported in Front Royal and Warren County.
Last year, in 2020, that number rose to 76 overdose cases reported to law enforcement in Front Royal and Warren County.
The increased presence of Fentanyl seems to be a key factor in the rise in overdoses.
With seven overdoses reported solely in the Town of Front Royal thus far into 2021, our department believes this trend may continue and that there remains a serious threat to public health and safety.
The Front Royal Police Department and regional Drug Task Force are working diligently to combat illegal narcotics being distributed in our community.
If you have any information regarding these deaths or the distribution of narcotics that you would like to share with the Front Royal Police Department, we ask that you please contact us at (540) 635-2111.
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