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Delco DA Warns of Potent — and Deadly — New Street Drug

By David Madden

MEDIA, Pa. (CBS) — Delaware County officials are warning of a deadly drug being sold illegally on the streets of this region.

It’s clinical name is fentanyl.  About 50-100 more potent than morphine, it’s prescribed for patients with cancer-related pain.

But now, according to Delaware County district attorney Jack Whelan, drug dealers are using it as a cutting agent for heroin that is packaged and sold on the street under the name “Black Dahlia.”

Whelan says one addict in Marcus Hook, Pa. paid for her habit with her life.

“This poor woman who injected this drug believed that she was taking heroin,” Whelan said today, “only us to find out that it was 100-percent pure fentanyl.”

It’s the first such fatal overdose case in Delaware County this year.  Whelan’s fear is that others might make the same mistake she did.

The county has a task force trying to stop such street sales, and there’s a push in Harrisburg to allow police officers to carry and administer an antidote drug that could counteract the potentially fatal aftereffects of street narcotics (see related story).

New Jersey has just authorized its law enforcement professionals to make use of the antidote drug, Narcan, in emergency situations (another related story).

More from David Madden
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