Los Altos High School student dies from possible fentanyl poisoning

Fentanyl is "infiltrating our schools, colleges, homeless encampments, our parks and our community at large," the county said.

ByTim Johns KGO logo
Saturday, April 2, 2022
Los Altos HS student dies from possible fentanyl poisoning
A Los Altos High School student died Friday morning from possible fentanyl poisoning. Mountain View police are investigating.

LOS ALTOS, Calif. (KGO) -- A tragedy is unfolding in the Los Altos High School community.

An unidentified teenager, a student at the school, was pronounced dead Friday morning at their home.

The suspected killer? Possible fentanyl poisoning.

A statement released by The Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District reads in part, "With profound sadness, we share the unexpected loss of a member of our Los Altos High School student body. We know that any loss, particularly that of a young person, is tragic. Our sincere condolences go out to the student's family, friends and school community."

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The Mountain View Police Department has launched an investigation into the incident.

"We're, we're feeling it. And we have told the family that we are going to be there for them and that this is something that we feel deeply too," said Katie Nelson, a spokesperson for the Mountain View Police Department.

But this case is not an isolated incident. Santa Clara County officials have been raising alarm bells for months about the growing fentanyl crisis.

It's gotten so bad they've launched a working group focused on reducing local fentanyl deaths.

"It's infiltrating our schools, colleges, homeless encampments, our parks and our community at large," said Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez.

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A 16-year-old drug dealer was arrested and charged with murder of a 12-year-old San Jose girl who died of a fentanyl overdose, according to officials.

The group's first news conference was also held on Friday.

There, they highlighted the growing number of fentanyl deaths in the county.

That number was 29 in 2019, and hit 135 in 2021.

"Unfortunately, youth are disproportionately effected and we see that half of the fatalities are in the younger age groups," said Jon Blom, whose son died of a fentanyl poisoning.

So while the investigation into Santa Clara's newest possible case continues, the Mountain View Police Department is reaching out parents for help too, asking them to talk to their children to try and avoid another deadly statistic.

"About the dangers of using any drugs and the consequences that can come from that, especially not just how they impact students but also their families," Nelson said.