Yakima County Coroner Jim Curtice has a warning for those who use drugs in Yakima. Curtice says over the last two days he's seen 4 overdose deaths and he's concerned there's a large amount of fentanyl laced pills being sold on the streets of Yakima. He's hoping he doesn't see another rash of overdoses in the coming weeks. Curtice says he doesn't know if a warning will make any difference to those who use drug but he's hoping someone hears the message.

Overdose numbers are approaching last year's record death number

Curtice says 41 people have died of drug overdoses so far this year in Yakima County. He says last year Yakima County saw a record 98 overdoses with half connected to fentanyl. But Yakima could break that record this year with 41 so far halfway through the year.
Drug overdoses are killing people all around the state not just in Yakima County.  Officials with the Washington State Department of Health say 2,000 people died of drug overdoses in the state in 2021 which is a 66% increase over 2019.

Curtice says the drugs from the open US border are now in Yakima County

So where is the fentanyl coming from? Curtice believes it's coming in big quantities from Mexico through the open US border.
Curtice says he works closely with victim families and speaks around the valley to various groups about the dangers of fentanyl and the challenge authorities have in areas like Yakima County.

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