Recovering addict who survived 14 overdoses warns of fentanyl-laced drugs

THE 20TH OF SEPTEMBER. WE’RE ON COURSE TO SET A NEW RECORD IN JEFFERSON COUNTY AND THIS IS NOT A GOOD ONE. YEAH, SO SO FAR THIS YEAR THE CORNERS REPORTING MORE THAN 200 OVERDOSE DEATHS ALL ATTRIBUTED TO FENTANYL WPTM 13’S LISA. CRANE HAS BEEN ON TOP OF THE STORY FOR US TODAY. SHE JOINS US TONIGHT AT THE CORONER’S OFFICE LISA. THAT NUMBER ALONE IS JUST STAGGERING WHEN YOU LOOK AT IT. YEAH, IT REALLY IS AND YOU KNOW EVERY YEAR WE ARE BREAKING THE PREVIOUS YEAR’S RECORD IN THIS CATEGORY FOR EXAMPLE IN 2018. THERE WERE 68 FENTANYL RELATED OVERDOSE DEATHS HERE IN JEFFERSON COUNTY LAST YEAR. THERE WERE 316 NOW A VERY SMALL AMOUNT OF FENTANYL CAN BE DEADLY AND MORE AND MORE DRUG MAKERS AND DRUG SELLERS ARE ACTUALLY MISSING IT INTO ALL KINDS OF STREET DRUGS FROM COCAINE TO HEROIN. ASHLEY CROSS IS DOING OKAY THESE DAYS. SHE’S THREE MONTHS CLEAN AND IN REHAB AT THE LOVELADY CENTER. I STARTED OUT WITH ROXIES AND OXYCONTIN AND THEN I WENT TO HEROIN AND THEN IT JUST THERE COMES THE TIME WHERE IT’S JUST NOT STRONG ENOUGH SO YOU CAN GET SOMETHING CHEAPER THAT’S STRONGER AND THAT’S FENTANYL. BUT ASHLEY SAYS EVEN IF YOU DON’T SPECIFICALLY BUY IT IF YOU’RE USING ILLEGAL DRUGS YOU’RE USING FENTANYL BECAUSE IT’S IN EVERYTHING YOU CAN GUARANTEE THAT IT’S IN EVERYTHING FENTANYILLIT RELEVEN TO IVELY MAILL CHEAP AND CHECK IF YOU THINK YOU’RE BUYING A PRESCRIPTION DRUG LIKE XANAX IF YOU’RE NOT GETTING IT AT A PHARMACY, IT’S PROBABLY LACED WITH FENTANYL DRUG DEALERS HAVE PILL PRESSES AND CONFORM THE ILLEGAL DRUGAL DRUGLY INTO LITHING ATME THE ATME. IT LOOKS EXACTLY LIKE WHAT YOU WOULD GET FROM A PHARMACY PRESCRIBED BY A DOCTOR. BUT IN FACT, IT’S NOT IT’S SOMETHING THAT THEY’VE THROWN TOGETHER AND IT’S JUST FENTANYL ACTUALLY SAYS SHE WAS WITH HER DEALER AS HE MIXED UP THE DRUG TO SELL A DRUG SO DEADLY IT’S MEASURED D IN GRAMT YOU. YOU DON’T MEASURE IT AT ALL YOU. GET YOUR BAG AND YOU JUST KIND OF GUESS SHE REALIZES AFTER 14 OVERDOSES. SHE’S MORE THAN LUCKY TO BE ALIVE. SHE SAYS SHE’S KNOWN MANY PEOPLE WHO? BEEN AS LUCKY PEOPLE WHO ARE NOW A STATISTIC. I’M VERY GRATEFUL THAT I’M HERE. I’M VERY GRATEFUL THAT I CAME BACK ALL THIS TIME. NOW COLIN HARRIS IS A FORMER HEROIN ADDICT AND NOW THE DIRECTOR OF THE BIRMINGHAM REHABILITATION CENTER. HE SAYS FENTANYL IS ALSO MAKING IT VERY DIFFICULT TO DISTINGUISH CASUAL DRUG USERS FROM ACTUAL ADDICTS NOW HE SAYS IN THE PAST IF YOU OVERDOSED YOU ARE MOST LIKELY ADDICTED TO THAT DRUG, BUT NOW WITHINILL A FENTAL CENTANYL ANYL, FIRST DRUG USER WHO OVERDOSES SO HE HAS TO DIG DIG DEEP INTO THEIR SUBSTANCE ABUSE HISTORY TO FIND OUT IF TREATMENT

Recovering addict who survived 14 overdoses warns of fentanyl-laced drugs

Fentanyl is a cheap and relatively easy-to-get filler for illicit drug makers. Even if you think you’re buying a prescription drug like Xanax, if you’re not getting it at a pharmacy, it’s probably laced with fentanyl. Drug dealers have pill presses and can form the illegal drug into something that looks exactly like the real thing. This has led to a growing number of overdose deaths across the US and in central Alabama. Learn more in the video above.WVTM 13’s Lisa Crane spoke to Ashley Cross, a woman in recovery at The Lovelady Center in Birmingham who is now three months clean after a dangerous addiction to prescription opioids, heroin, and eventually fentanyl. Cross said her addiction nearly killed her more than a dozen times, having overdosed 14 times. “I’m very grateful that I’m here,” she said. “I’m very grateful that I came back all those times.” Cross said she will witness her dealer mixing fentanyl into other drugs, leaving unsuspecting buyers playing a dangerous guessing game about what they’re actually ingesting. “You don’t even measure it. You don’t measure it at all,” Cross said. “You get your bag and you just kind of guess.”Colin Harris of the Birmingham Recovery Center said a lot of the fentanyl-laced drugs appear the same as the pills prescribed by doctors.”It looks exactly like what you would get from a pharmacy prescribed by a doctor,” Harris said. “But in fact, it’s not. It’s something that they’ve thrown together, and it’s just fentanyl.”——

Fentanyl is a cheap and relatively easy-to-get filler for illicit drug makers. Even if you think you’re buying a prescription drug like Xanax, if you’re not getting it at a pharmacy, it’s probably laced with fentanyl. Drug dealers have pill presses and can form the illegal drug into something that looks exactly like the real thing. This has led to a growing number of overdose deaths across the US and in central Alabama. Learn more in the video above.

WVTM 13’s Lisa Crane spokes to Ashley Cross, a woman in recovery at The Lovelady Center in Birmingham who is now three months clean after a dangerous addiction to prescription opioids, heroin, and eventually fentanyl. Cross said her addiction nearly killed her more than a dozen times, having overdosed 14 times.

“I’m very grateful that I’m here,” she said. “I’m very grateful that I came back all those times.”

Cross said she witnessed her dealer mixing fentanyl into other drugs, leaving unsuspecting buyers playing a dangerous guessing game about what they’re actually ingesting.

“You don’t even measure it. You don’t measure it at all,” Cross said. “You get your bag and you just kind of guess.”

Colin Harris of the Birmingham Recovery Center said a lot of the fentanyl-laced drugs appear the same as the pills prescribed by doctors.

“It looks exactly like what you would get from a pharmacy prescribed by a doctor,” Harris said. “But in fact, it’s not. It’s something that they’ve thrown together, and it’s just fentanyl.”

Counterfeit drugs

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