Christiansburg police sound the alarm after recent uptick in drug overdoses

Police report five overdoses in last six weeks

By Jessica Jewell - Weekend Anchor / Reporter

CHRISTIANSBURG, Va. - Christiansburg police said they're battling a drug problem after a recent uptick in overdoses.

Over the weekend, Christiansburg police responded to three overdoses in 24 hours. One of those was deadly. Now officers are sounding the alarm.

The drug epidemic plaguing bigger cities is now hitting communities like Christiansburg hard. Police told 10 News in the last six weeks, they’ve responded to five overdoses. Two of those were deadly.

"That’s a lot, especially for our area," Christiansburg assistant police chief Chris Ramsey said.

Ramsey said it picked up a couple years ago. Before the recent uptick, they’d been responding to about one overdose a month. That’s not the only disturbing trend they’re seeing.

"What you think you're buying may not be what you intend to buy," Ramsey said.

Ramsey said many dealers are distributing highly potent fentanyl made to look like other drugs.

"They could very easily overdose on that taking what they thought was a safe amount for them," Ramsey said.

That's why his department is now taking it upon themselves to spread the word, saying enforcement isn't their only responsibility in battling this epidemic.

"We don't want them to do illegal things and we don't want to see people addicted to drugs but we want to keep them safe first and foremost," Ramsey said. "If we have one person die from a drug overdose, that's one too many and we have a drug problem."

Ramsey said community partners need to continue working together to help solve this problem. He also wants to get the word out about the safe reporting law. Click here to learn more.

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