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Heroin overdoses on the rise across the nation

Posted at 6:10 PM, Aug 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-26 08:31:42-04

The heroin epidemic is causing tons of overdoses across the nation, from Cincinnati to Pima County.

In Cincinnati alone, 32 reported heroin overdoses since Tuesday; in one county in Indiana - 14 overdoses in one day; earlier this month in West Virginia - 27 overdoses in a matter of 5 hours.

Authorities in those states believe one of the reasons for the uptick in overdoses comes from a stronger form of heroin laced with Carfentanil, used as an elephant tranquilizer.

However, here in Pima County, Sheriff Chris Nanos says that while the problem is serious, there hasn't been any reports of elephant tranquilizer-laced heroin. In his eyes, that form is "a thousand times worse," than what used to be on the streets, and the situation in Ohio is, "a nightmare."

"I think they've had two-hundred and some instances in just the last two or three weeks -- overdoses -- with this Carfentanil," Sheriff Nanos said. "Which is basically what they use to drug an elephant. I mean, no, we have not seen that -- and I hope we don't."

The Pima County Medical Examiner's Annual Report shows there were 379 drug overdose deaths in 2015, which is 55 more than in 2014. Of those deaths, 73 of them were heroin related - which they explain is likely under reported.