April 09, 2018 09:13 AM

Loved ones, friends, and community leaders are remembering those killed by drug overdoses.

Sunday marks the start of National Crime Victims' Awareness Week. In Monroe County, those close to overdose victims came together for a memorial in Highland Park.

April 09, 2018 09:13 AM

Loved ones, friends, and community leaders are remembering those killed by drug overdoses.

Sunday marks the start of National Crime Victims' Awareness Week. In Monroe County, those close to overdose victims came together for a memorial in Highland Park.

A warning from the group is to be on the look out for fentanyl, a potent pain killer often prescribed after surgery. Some forms of it are not considered illegal in New York.

"I suffered for a year before my daughter died, watching that addiction take her," Jim Wesley, a former forensic chemist, said. "I had good health benefits. I tried everything possible to help her and in the end on her autopsy the four causes of death were heroin, fentanyl, morphine, and cocaine."

Those meeting Sunday want to stop other people from having to endure the pain of losing someone to the opioid epidemic and to talk to others who have lost someone someone due to a drug overdose. But this was not just a memorial, but also a rally. 

The group calling for more resources to fight this epidemic. Becky Baker, who lost her son last year at the age 27 to an opioid overdose, wanted to send out a warning to parents and others who's loved one is struggling with an addiction.

"I know of so many autopsy reports that have come back recently and let me say to you...it's not even the heroin. These people think they're buying heroin. It's been around forever, fentanyl is killing our kids and prosecution needs to take place," Baker said.

"There are 25 different fentanyls being distributed throughout the country which only 6 are illegal in New York State," Wesley said. "So the fentanyl that showed up in March 2016 and started killing everybody, you can have that in you, you can sell it, you can drive down the street and you can't arrest anybody because it's not a drug."

Right now, the demand is for more detox beds in Monroe County as only 25 detox beds serve the entire county.

WHECTV

Updated: April 09, 2018 09:13 AM
Created: April 08, 2018 06:22 PM

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