3 dead, 1 hospitalized in Santa Clara Co. suspected fentanyl overdoses, sheriff says

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Wednesday, February 8, 2023
3 dead in Santa Clara Co. suspected fentanyl overdoses, sheriff says
Three people were found dead and one was transported to a hospital after a suspected fentanyl overdose in unincorporated Gilroy.

GILROY, Calif. (KGO) -- The fentanyl crisis continues to claim the lives of those who are using the dangerous drug, and leaders in the South Bay want to stop overdoses at the source after three men were found dead from suspected fentanyl use.

On a small town road in unincorporated Gilroy on Monday, the deadly opioid crisis reared its head once again.

Santa Clara County Sheriff's deputies found four men in their fifties unresponsive, likely from fentanyl use.

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"They immediately applied life-saving measures and applied Narcan to every individual in that household," Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office PIO Sgt. Russell Davis said. "Unfortunately, three of the victims inside the house were pronounced deceased at the scene. One male was revived with Narcan and was transported to a local hospital."

Sergeant Russell Davis says fentanyl is the most dangerous drug in the country right now and stopping this crisis remains their top priority.

Part of that effort comes in finding out how these men got the fentanyl in the first place.

"We sent detectives and crime scene investigators to the residence to conduct a full and thorough investigation," Sgt. Davis said. "Based on the evidence that we retrieve, if we have enough information to link this back to a person responsible to this incident, there will be homicide charges that will be sent over to the district attorney's office."

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We spoke with a group of friends at the home who said they were going to visit one of the victims in the hospital.

They declined to speak on camera, but they told us the fentanyl crisis is truly getting out of hand.

Santa Clara County leaders on the Fentanyl Working Group, like Santa Clara County Addiction Medicine and Family Medicine's Dr. Rachel Sussman, agrees, especially when it comes to youth drug use.

"The stakes of making a small mistake have never been higher," Dr. Sussman said. "One of the crazy things of the fentanyl overdose crisis in youth is that it's happening in the face of decreasing drug use for youth."

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And yet, Dr. Sussman says they are dying from drugs more than ever before.

Sussman says the Fentanyl Working Group has made strides in reactionary measures like having Narcan more readily available


But, she says the next step is preventing overdoses before they happen.

"I think we just need to not just work on the reactive piece, that means getting Narcan into people's hands, but really work on the preventive piece of reducing supply and demand and make sure that people have access to treatment if they developed an addiction," Sussman said.

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