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April 21, 2017
Sussex County Prosecutor Francis A. Koch issued the following public service announcement. As the public is well aware, we are facing a heroin and opioid epidemic across our County and State. This epidemic poses extreme dangers up to and including death to our community members. In the last week, we have seen a marked increase in the number of NARCAN deployments by local law enforcement officers across the entire county.
In Sussex County, we have had 12 NARCAN deployments in less than one week. To put that in perspective, in the past year, Sussex County has averaged 3 to 4 deployments a month, an approximate 1200% increase. To add to this tragedy, 3 of those overdoses resulted in death.
It is our belief that there is currently an even deadlier batch of heroin that is possibly laced with other drugs entering our county that is the cause for this increase. The Sussex County law enforcement community along with the CLEAR initiative is determined to help individuals on their road to recovery and end this epidemic. Today, it is more important than ever for individuals to reach out for help and stop the use of heroin. I also want to recognize Atlantic Health/Newton Memorial Hospital for their unceasing support of the CLEAR program and their continued commitment by resupplying law enforcement with NARCAN after they deploy a unit in an attempt to save a person’s life.
Finally, the Community Law Enforcement Addiction Recover “CLEAR” program can be reached at 1-844-SC-CLEAR (72-25327).