76 overdoses reported in New Haven; 1 person arrested

A man has been arrested in the USA after more than 40 people overdosed in a CT park on a drug suspected of being laced with an opioid, police say.

Most were treated at local hospitals, though at least five refused to be transported. One man has been arrested.

Officials continue to look into the cases, which appeared to center on the New Haven Green on Wednesday.

He says one of the victims still had some of the drug, which was sent off to a lab for testing.

"They were having to transport faster than they might normally just to turn the cars around and get them back out", Sandy Bogucki, New Haven's Director of Emergency Medical Services, said in a news conference. A city official said more than a dozen people fell ill from suspected drug overdoses on the green and were taken to local hospitals.

Some of the people were unconscious - others were vomiting or exhibiting other overdose symptoms.

Some people at the scene also told officials that the K2 was "possibly" laced with the drug PCP, a source tells CBS.

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New Haven first responders were called to a similar overdose outbreak on the Green on July 4, when more than a dozen people were sick from synthetic marijuana. Police Chief Anthony Campbell identified him only as a man who is known to police for drug violations and was found in possession of a drug believed to be K2.

Nationally, overdose deaths reached a record level of 72,000 in 2017, according to a recent federal report. The New Haven green is a meetingplace for the homeless population in the city. Three of them happened Tuesday night.

"We're getting another call", Alston told reporters, some of whom began chasing after medical workers as they rushed to treat the affected person.

Drugs, particularly fentanyl, are now deadlier in the United States than either HIV, vehicle crashes or guns, the report said.

The number of overdose victims linked to a suspected bad batch of synthetic marijuana has risen to 76 in New Haven, Connecticut, as officials try to determine exactly what sickened people. Fire and emergency crews responded to an area right across from City Hall.

New Haven police said they expect to release more information about their investigation on Thursday.

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