Fentanyl crisis: Six West Point football players overdose on tainted cocaine in Florida

Fentanyl-laced cocaine is believed to be responsible for the hospitalization of six football players on spring break with two in critical condition


                            Fentanyl crisis: Six West Point football players overdose on tainted cocaine in Florida
REPRESENTATIVE IMAGE: Police tape marks off an apartment building on June 12, 2016, in Fort Pierce, Florida. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
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Six West Point football players celebrating their spring break in Florida were hospitalized on March 10, 2022, due to fentanyl-laced cocaine. Police responded to calls at a Wilton Manors vacation rental home in Fort Lauderdale around 5 pm and found multiple individuals overdosed from the deadly drug. Two are still in hospital in critical condition, latest reports say, with one student having been released. 

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In September 2021, the White House recommended the drug be named as a Schedule 1 drug by the FDA to further cripple its use. That came after several high-profile deaths linked to fentanyl-laced drugs such as that of Digital Underground rapper Shock G, and 'The Flash' actor Logan Williams. Others that suffered from fentanyl were porn star Dakota Sky, and comedian Kate Quigley, who luckily survived her overdose. 

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The Military Academy in West Point is aware of the students' hospitalization but has so far not yet issued a detailed statement about the incident. "The US Military Academy is aware of the situation involving West Point cadets...  The incident is currently under investigation and no other details are available at this time," a spokesperson said. 

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Spring Breakers on holiday overdose

All six victims were identified as West Point cadets and men in their 20s. The New York Post also reported that they were football players, who were in Fort Lauderdale to celebrate their spring break. "There were multiple people in cardiac arrest in the front yard ... Narcan was deployed as quickly as possible," said Fire Rescue Chief Stephen Gollan. All six were then rushed to Broward Health Medical Center. 

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It is believed that four of the students consumed the tainted cocaine and suffered a cardiac arrest. Two others fell ill after giving mouth-to-mouth to the victims, in an attempt to resuscitate them. One of the students is reported to have been released after treatment, while two are believed to be in critical condition. The condition of the other three is not clear at this time. "This is extremely alarming to us, here we are in the first week of spring break and we have something like this taking place," Gollan added

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The fire chief went on to say, " It brings great concern that there could be other ODs over the next couple of days just basing what we're seeing with the fentanyl that was here." Shortly after the incident, the Wilton Manors Police Department tweeted, "It’s spring break season in @WiltonManorsCty! WMPD wants to warn spring breakers about the dangers of using illicit drugs & to avoid mixing drugs with alcohol or other forms of drugs. Protect yourself from the dangers of Fentanyl," along with a warning video. 

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America's drug crisis has only worsened over the past several years, with little solution in sight. In November 2021, CDC data showed that drug overdoses surged 30% over the previous year, with opioids like fentanyl accounting for over 75% of fatalities. You can learn more about the deadly drug and its effects on this CDC webpage

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