Published: Sat, August 18, 2018
Medical | By Johnnie Horton

3rd arrest made in connection to New Haven overdoses

3rd arrest made in connection to New Haven overdoses

The soup kitchens are always busy, he said, and there are about 2,000 medical calls a year on or around the green, most related to alcohol and drugs.

Forty-six people overdosed Wednesday at or near a CT park from a suspected bad batch of "K2" synthetic marijuana, requiring paramedics to be stationed there to provide treatment, authorities said.

While it wasn't as busy as Wednesday, at least 20 more overdoses happened as of Thursday afternoon. Vomiting and hallucinating drug users dropped like flies throughout the day as emergency crews raced to the New Haven Green to save lives.

"DMHAS will provide for the city recovery coaches, training and dissemination of Narcan, as well as fund a street psychiatrist", Harp said.

"The substance behind these overdoses is highly unsafe and must be avoided". "The substance behind these overdoses is highly risky and must be avoided".

"[Fire Chief] Alston says the substance appears to be some type of synthetic cannabis, but authorities are not sure". "It is taking people out very quickly; people [are] having respiratory failure".

Authorities said 19 more people overdosed Thursday, and that the number could climb.

He said this was the single largest concentration of overdose victims that the department had experienced.

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While New Haven is famed as home to Yale and its world-class hospitals, as well as two other universities, it is also the fourth poorest community in the wealthy state and has the state's highest crime rate.

Mayor Toni Harp said plans were being finalized for Jim Carroll, President Trump's nominee for drug czar, to visit New Haven on Monday.

Officials said the patients were "all different ages" and that anti-overdose drugs given to some victims did not work.

She said toxicology tests will help investigators learn more about the nature of the drug.

So far, no deaths have been reported. Some victims tested positive for the powerful opioid fentanyl, but it appeared most if not all the overdoses were caused only by a potent batch of "K2" synthetic marijuana, said Dr. Kathryn Hawk, an emergency medicine physician and professor at Yale-New Haven Hospital, where numerous victims were treated.

No one has died from the overdoses in CT, but in April two people died in Chicago from a bad batch of K2 that caused severe bleeding in 54 other people.

Officials blamed K2 and said it can often be laced with unsafe or even lethal substances. The additives boost the high, but can create a risky, sometimes deadly cocktail.

"One of our fears is that this isn't over", Hartman said. About five of his friends from the city's green overdosed on Wednesday. Grotheer disputed the notion that the green was evolving into anything like a tent city at night. Local officials said it was unlike anything they had seen before. One engine company, for example, responded to eight separate overdoses. He said there were a dozen overdoses in 40 minutes on the green on Wednesday morning. New Haven police said one person is in custody. The state even had to send in an extra 50 doses. Other victims reported paying for the drugs.

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