Wednesday, January 20, 2021

OPD Responds to Drug Overdose Claims on Social Media

By Alyssa Schnugg
News editor

The Oxford Police Department has investigated 11 narcotic overdoses so far this year that resulted in the deaths of two people, one that occurred two weeks ago.

On Wednesday, OPD issued a statement after several social media posts began circulating claiming there three drug overdose deaths in Oxford on Tuesday night.

Lafayette County Coroner Rocky Kennedy said there were no overdose deaths in the last few days, but there was one in the first week of September.

OPD Chief Jeff McCutchen said investigations have shown that people are accessing drugs through the “darknet” and receiving them in the mail.

“Our agents have also traced these drugs back to our surrounding states through their investigation,” McCutchen said in the press release. “When drugs are accessed through these means, we know two things happen – the user does not know what they are getting or where it is coming from and it diminishes law enforcement’s ability to track and locate the source.”

In recent field tests, local OPD and Lafayette County Metro Narcotic agents have found street-level drugs with traces of fentanyl in them.

Drugs are being cut and processed with fentanyl so that the dealer can produce more of the drug, according to McCutchen.

“The human body can only withstand a small microgram dose of fentanyl. Cross-contamination of any drug laced with fentanyl can be deadly and that is not a risk worth taking,” he said.

Mississippi’s Good Samaritan Law protects someone from prosecution when they call 911 for themselves or a friend when medical attention is requested.

We ask our community to contact us if you have any information about narcotic use or distribution in the Lafayette, Oxford, or University communities,” McCutchen said.

The Metro Narcotics Unit can be reached at 662-236-3900.