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Buffalo Police warn of deadly heroin

By Eileen Buckley

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wbfo/local-wbfo-958842.mp3

Buffalo, NY – Local law enforcement are warning about a dangerous supply of heroin being sold on the streets.

Buffalo Police, the U.S. Attorney and other drug enforcement leaders will work to crack down to heroin dealers.

Buffalo Police Commissioner Daniel Derenda describes the heroin troubles as "highly unusual".

"But it is highly unusual to have two deaths, and again there is a third one that my be attributed to heroin," said Derenda.

There were 42-non-fatal opiate based overdoses at one area hospital in January. Police are trying to determine if the heroin is laced or mixed with other ingredients.

"We're not sure right now, we are investigating if the heroin is laced or what it is mixed with...There is something out there that we don't know right now that are causing these deaths and overdoses," said Commissioner Dereneda.

Dale Kasprzyk is a resident agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration. He said this problem is also related to an epidemic of prescription drugs sold on the streets.

"As these individuals users develop an opiate problem they get addicted to the drugs, they often transition to heroin. Heroin is cheaper, stronger and it is real lure for these individual addicts," said Kasprzyk.

U.S. Attorney William Hochul is vowing that his office will assist Buffalo Police and the DEA to help bring drug distributors to justice.

"If you are shooting bags of heroin, as these statictics tell you, it is almost the same way as shooting yourself with a gun. If you are providing the bags of heroin it is almost the same as pulling the trigger on the gun," said Hochul.

Hochul said his office will work to seek federal charged that could mean up to 20-years in prison.

Hohcul said all the overdoses will also be treated as a crime scene and potential homicide.