Detectives found traces of fentanyl at a home in Broward County after four men were hospitalized Sunday night due to having difficulty breathing, officials said.
Broward Sheriff's Office Fire Rescue crews responded after 6 p.m. to the home in the 1600 block of SW 40th Terrace, near the intersection of Davie Boulevard and U.S. 441 in unincorporated Broward County.
Officials said two of the men were not breathing at the scene and were hospitalized with life-threatening injuries. Two other men were also hospitalized after having shortness of breath.
Officials said three of the men have been released from the hospital. One remains hospitalized, and his condition was unknown.
The men were ages 39, 30, 28 and 26, officials said, and they did not release their identities.
Detectives found drug residue at the scene, which was later tested and determined to be fentanyl, officials said.
An Army football player and West Point cadets on spring break were hospitalized Thursday after overdosing on fentanyl at a vacation rental in Wilton Manors. Axel Giovany Casseus, 21, was arrested in connection with the case and faces a cocaine trafficking charge.
Fentanyl is a dangerous and potentially deadly synthetic opioid that is up to 100 times stronger than morphine. It's often added to other street drugs and made into pills that closely resemble prescription opioids.
Fentanyl is so potent that it can cause medical problems simply by coming into contact with a person's skin, Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody said in a warning about the dangers of the drug.
"If you aren't someone who regularly takes an opioid, if you don't take heroin and haven't been addicted for a long time and you get even a microscopic amount of fentanyl in your cocaine, it's going to cause you to overdose," said Kendall Cortelyou of Project Opioid.
About 2,300 Florida overdoses involved fentanyl in 2018; 3,300 in 2019; and then 5,300 in 2020 — a 125% increase over three years. Broward also leads the state in COVID overdoses.
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