By Cherri Gregg
CAMDEN, N.J. (AP) — A rash of heroin overdoses has law enforcement officials in Camden worried that drug users may be at risk from unusually potent drugs.
Camden County Prosecutor Warren Faulk and Camden County police Chief Scott Thomson reported Friday night that three people overdosed on heroin overnight. All three survived. They say one man appeared to have overdosed twice.
While investigating the overdoses, police charged a 24-year-old North Camden man with possession, distribution and other drug offenses. They say he was found with bags of crack and heroin.
Investigators are trying to determine if that man was responsible for distributing the drugs that led to the overdoses.
Authorities say there were six heroin-related overdoses, none fatal, in early May. Police are investigating whether the most recent ones are a result of the same brand of heroin or a new supply of dangerously potent drugs.
“Heroin is dangerous, inherently, obviously, but we’re investigating whether there’s something going on, like a heroin that’s even more dangerous,” says Camden County Police spokesman Michael Daniels.
He says on Wednesday and Friday officers conducted extensive sting operations in North Camden, in Whitman Park and other sections of the city, arresting dozens of people trying to buy the drug.
“It was 45 over those two days,” he says.
Daniels says 36 of the suspects, or 80 percent, were not from the City of Camden.
He says they all face loitering charges, which carry up to six months in jail. He says the department wants to clean up the streets and send a clear message to drug buyers.
“If you come to Camden to buy drugs, you will be arrested, you will be prosecuted. We take it seriously.”
(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)