A potent batch of heroin led to more than 20 overdoses in Huntington, WV on Monday.
Now, police worry that the backlash from the drug emergency is far from over.
Cody Southern has been sober for two years, but says his life as a drug addict is something he will never forget.
“I’ve bought, I’ve sold, I know what goes in as a consumer and I know what goes into it as a seller. This is not isolated. There will be more overdoses by the weekend. I would guarantee it,” said Cody Southern, a recovering addict and graduate of Recovery Point in Huntington, WV.
Cody says, from his experience, it shouldn’t be long before the strong batch of heroin in Huntington makes it’s way into cities along I-64.
Officers with the Metropolitan Drug Enforcement Network Team say it’s definitely a possibility.
“Huntington is a source city for Charleston so it very well could end up in this area. That doesn’t necessarily mean that it will, but it very well could,” said Lt. Eric Johnson, Commander of MDENT.
MDENT officers say it only takes a matter of days for drugs to trickle down from larger cities like Detroit, Columbus, and Atlanta. The spread from Huntington to Charleston could take hours.
While many believe that the high number of overdoses will deter drug users from purchasing heroin, MDENT officers say it’s likely to encourage them to seek it out.
“They hope that it is a stronger, more higher percentage form of the actual drug which would be a better high,” said Lt. Johnson.
Cody says he knows how hard it is to overcome addiction, but hopes this string of overdoses will be an eye opener for local addicts.
“An overdose can be the beginning for some people. Unfortunately, that is not the case for everybody. Not everybody makes it out alive,” said Cody.
If you or someone you know is currently addicted to heroin, there are dozens of ways to seek help.
You can reach the Prestera Center at (304) 341-0511 or Recovery Point of Huntington at (304) 523-4673.