Bad batch of heroin suspected in Lancaster overdose deaths

LANCASTER (WCMH) — For the third time in a week, a Central Ohio city is warning its residents about a bad batch of drugs that is killing people.

Lancaster Police say they respond to a number of overdose calls each week, but it is unusual for them to see this many overdose deaths is a short period of time. Three fatal heroin overdoses over the weekend has authorities believing there is a bad batch of the drugs making its rounds in the area.

“It’s sad and it’s striking how all three of these people were in their houses with family nearby,” said Deputy Police Chief Adam Pillar.

Monday morning police responded to a man who was having difficulty breathing. He was taken to a local hospital where he died. Police say the man was using methamphetamine and was having trouble sleeping; he many have used heroin to help.

Friday, a 38-year-old man was found unresponsive by his wife with a syringe in his hand. On Sunday, a 47-year-old woman was found cold and unresponsive by her son.

“We’ve gotten reports from other jurisdictions surrounding Fairfield County that there has been a bad batch. We think some of that has finally made its way here,” Pillar said.

Lancaster Police tell NBC4 that authorities usually see bad batches come out of larger cities like Columbus. This particular batch is believed to be laced with carfentanil.

“Carfentanil especially is particularly dangerous,” Pillar said. “It can be inhaled and it can be dangerous for you handling it.”

Anyone that has purchased illegal drugs in the last several days is encouraged to destroy them or turn them over to authorities. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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