Metro Police’s strategy to combat fentanyl overdoses working
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - The numbers are in and it seems Metro Police’s new strategy to combat fentanyl overdoses downtown is working.
It’s no secret tourists come here to party, but emergency responders were seeing far too many overdosing on fentanyl.
It’s why Metro Police decided to crackdown, and right before the CMA Fest when thousands of outsiders come to town dancing and drinking, the tourists will tell you it’s what they’re here to do.
But Metro Police had noticed a troubling trend – tourists either being hospitalized or dying after taking drugs laced with fentanyl.
“You know people who are local to Nashville may very well know about the problem of people selling drugs that are being posed as one thing but are actually something else, but people who are new to the city may know that particular danger,” said a Metro Police undercover sergeant working the downtown area.
Fearing the numbers could skyrocket during the CMA Fest, Metro Police launched an undercover operation lasting several weeks.
On May 20, police arrested three people for selling fentanyl-laced cocaine downtown. Five days later they charged three for doing the same thing. On June 1, three more were arrested. Then on June 7, a huge bust with police confiscating more than five pounds of fentanyl, pills, cash and guns.
“Five-and-a-half pounds of almost any drug is a shocking amount, but fentanyl specifically is beyond shocking,” the Metro sergeant said.
Metro’s Specialized Investigations Division said it’s clear, the crackdown is working.
“We had a noticeable decrease in both fatal and non-fatal overdoses over the CMA weekend,” the sergeant said.
It’s great news for people who don’t want Music City getting the wrong reputation.
“We want to keep this city safe for everyone, not only the citizens who live here in Nashville, but also the people who come to visit our great city,” the sergeant said.
Police said their work is far from done and you can expect to see more drug busts in the future. They also plan to double-down on their community outreach efforts, helping addicts get the help they need.
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, help is available. You can call the Community Overdose Response Team day or night at 615-687-1701 even if you don’t have insurance or can’t afford to pay, they will be able to get you the help you need.
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