Five Butte Teen Fentanyl Overdoses Last Week, One Death
Wednesday, August 31 has been designated as ‘International Overdose Awareness Day’, and Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen spoke to us about the issue that has dominated his press conferences for the past year, fentanyl overdoses.
“It's International Overdose Awareness Day, and it's sad that we have to have a day like that, but we do,” began Knudsen. “It's particularly pertinent for us here in Montana. Fentanyl overdoses are absolutely going through the roof here in Montana. It truly is a real epidemic. And that's why we're just we're pounding the drum. We're blowing the trumpet, however, you want to say it. People need to be talking to their children about fentanyl because we are seeing a huge, huge spike in fentanyl overdoses and deaths here in Montana.”
Knudsen provided a shocking example of the fentanyl overdose crisis right here in Montana.
“We got word yesterday of five overdoses in Butte,” he said. “These were teenagers, and unfortunately one of them passed away. They thought they were taking a lower level, I guess the term I'll use is drug. We don't have toxicology back, Peter so I don't want to speak out of turn. But when we have all five of these kids overdose and one of them die. You know, my money is on fentanyl.”
Knudsen referenced his own teenage children as he expressed his concern about the overdose epidemic.
“It truly is scary. I mean, I've got teenage children,” he said. “I'm not one for hyperbole. I'm not one for false alarmism. This truly is becoming an epidemic in Montana. We are finding fentanyl mixed in everything. We are seizing drugs off the street. We're finding it mixed in heroin. We're finding it mixed in marijuana. This is the future as far as the cartels are concerned. They can manufacture this stuff cheaply. They can manufacture it in huge mass production labs south of the border, and then get it up here and they can make money on it.”
Knudsen was asked about ‘the War on Drugs’, and who may be responsible for the current epidemic of drugs and fatal overdoses.
“The more interesting question to me is that you're talking about war,” he said. “Most of the raw ingredients the cartels are using to make this fentanyl are coming from China. So we have to be asking ourselves, ‘why is the Chinese Communist government allowing huge shipments of raw fentanyl-based ingredients to be shipped across the Pacific Ocean to Mexico to known criminal groups?’ If that's not an act of war, I don't know what is.”
Knudsen has been fighting the Biden Administration and its border policies in federal court by participating in multiple lawsuits to compel the President to enforce current immigration laws.