Wexford County Law Enforcement Seeing Rise in Overdose Calls

Deputies in Wexford County are noticing a concerning trend.

There’s been a rise in the number of overdose calls in the last month.

Wexford County Undersheriff Rick Doehring says his deputies, along with officers from the city of Cadillac, have responded to 10 overdose calls in roughly the last month.

That’s compared to 12 calls in all of 2019.

“In the past when we’ve seen something like this it’s been maybe a different grade of drugs that are coming into the area, whether it be a different supplier, or a different way it’s cut either one of those factors sometimes, again this is not a pharmacy, people are buying stuff off the street hoping the person they’re buying it from is cutting it properly or cut it at a level they think is safe for them to use,” said Doehring.

At least 3 of the 10 calls ended with a first responder saving someone’s life.

Harm Reduction of Michigan says the coronavirus pandemic created a difficult situation for people already fighting drug addiction.

“People are isolating, they’re not using with partners, they’re not taking turns when they use, they’re not doing testers to find out if something might be too strong.  We try to reach people that if you’re going to be an injection drug user there are safer ways to do it to lessen the likelihood of overdose,” said Derrick Smith who handles outreach in Cadillac.

And the sheriff’s office says they’re doing what they can to keep dangerous drugs off the street while also finding people the help they need.

“You don’t know what you’re buying, you think you know what you’re buying, there’s treatment available. It’s tough right now,” said Doehring.

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