Wisconsin Child Likely Died of Fentanyl Poisoning, Officials Say

Fentanyl

Officials are investigating a recent death of a 5-year-old child, indicating the young individual likely died of fentanyl poisoning.

The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s Office provided an update on the case after the child was found dead last week.

“MCMEO investigating last week’s death of a 5 year child as a probable #fentanyl poisoning. @MilwaukeePolice investigating,” a tweet from the agency said.

According to initial reports, law enforcement officers found the child unresponsive on May 11 with no visible signs of trauma. He was pronounced dead at a residence.

Data has shown that fentanyl is becoming one of the deadliest drugs in the country. Based on information from officials with the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), two milligrams of fentanyl can be lethal.

According to the nonprofit Families Against Fentanyl, the drug is the number one killer of individuals ages 18 to 45.

In order to combat the growing crisis, state lawmakers approved fentanyl testing strips. These devices allow individuals to test drugs to see if they contain fentanyl.

“With easy access to fentanyl, drug dealers are lacing all types of illegal prescription and non-prescription drugs, such as Xanax and Adderall,” State Senator Van Wanggaard (R-Racine) said. “Decriminalizing testing strips will allow law enforcement officers, firefighters, medical providers, and others to test substances like these.”

After the approval, Racine County distributed the test strips to residents with the hope of saving lives. The county was prepared to give away more than 2,000 kits.

“Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that can be 80 to 100 times stronger than morphine. The purpose of fentanyl test strips is to allow the user to test the substance before using it to determine if fentanyl is present,” said Racine County’s Outpatient Clinic Manager Pauline Ortloff.

One piece of proposed federal legislation, known as the Fentanyl Trafficker Elimination Act, would establish life sentences for individuals convicted of intentionally trafficking fentanyl or fentanyl analogues.

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Cooper Moran is a reporter for The Wisconsin Daily Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]

 

 

 

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