On Jan. 14, Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims informed the public to be aware of fentanyl potentially being sold on local streets.

Fresno Police received a 911 call on Jan. 7 regarding three people who were unconscious at an apartment complex on the 900 block of Van Ness Avenue in Fresno. Officers and EMS personal responded and arranged for the three men, who were in their 20s and 30s, to be transported to Community Regional Medical Center. One person later died and the other two were treated and released. 

Toxicology tests were conducted and the results showed all three had ingested fentanyl, the highly-potent and often deadly drug. Investigators later spoke with the survivors who overdosed and learned they had taken a drug, which they all believed to be powdered cocaine. However, toxicology showed it was pure fentanyl.

If not for a neighbor finding the people so quickly and dialing 911, all three men likely would have died.

Fresno Police investigators now are working to try and identify the source of the drugs. They also want to warn the public of the dangers that come with buying and using illegal narcotics off the streets, because you have no way of telling what you actually are getting.

If you have information that can help investigators with this case, report it anonymously through Valley Crime Stoppers at (559) 498-7867 or valleycrimestoppers.org. You may be eligible for a cash reward.

Fresno County Public Health officials remind people that fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that can be fatal even in small doses because it is often 50 times more potent than heroin. Health officials also  urge people who use opioids to take advantage of the following resources for help:

centralvalleyopioidsafety.org, or


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