(Photo courtesy of dea.gov)


DATE: December 24, 2016


Brian Sullivan

Director of Public Relations

[email protected]

Swift River

151 South Street I Cummington, MA 01026

P: 901.949.7926


Vertava Health Thanks Derby Police Dept., DEA for Fentanyl Bust

Traffic Stop Ceases Distribution of Deadly Drug to American Communities

DERBY, Connecticut (December 24, 2016) – The smallest city in the state of Connecticut’s Police Department, in conjunction with the Drug Enforcement Administration, were able to deter over $1 million worth of the deadly drug fentanyl, enough to kill everyone in the state twice, from making its way to American communities this week.


Just 3 milligrams in the 55lbs. seized of the deadly drug is enough to kill the average adult male. The 8.3 million doses would have been enough to kill all 3.6 million residents of the state of Connecticut twice. The drug bust, which occurred Wednesday morning on Route 34, is one of the five largest fentanyl busts in U.S. history.


“This would have been a fatal addition to the bags of heroin killing our youth by the dozens in the Northeast,” says Vertava Health Market Director, Marine Corps. Veteran and Author Andrew McKenna. “Quick thinking on the part of law enforcement saved 8.3 million lives in time for the holidays.”


McKenna knows all too well the deadly effects of heroin laced with fentanyl. A former federal prosecutor, he became addicted to prescription painkillers after an injury. That addiction later progressed to heroin and McKenna robbing several banks to support it, as he chronicles in detail in his book Sheer Madness. Years sober, McKenna now works to educate others on the nation’s deadly opioid epidemic and criminal justice reform.


“We must offer every type of evidence-based treatment we know that is tailored to individuals,” says McKenna. “When people suffering are placed on sometimes months long waiting lists for detox centers in this area, we have to work together to be the solution.”


WTNH News 8 reports a suspect, 47-year-old Erick Escalante of Arizona, has been arrested in connection with the incident. He is due back in federal court on January 4. The investigation has been turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration of New Haven. Since the incident, another suspected fentanyl bust occurred in the city of Hartford that is still under investigation.


To schedule an interview with McKenna, contact Brian Sullivan directly at 901.949.7926 or [email protected].





Andrew McKenna, a high school dropout, proudly served in both the United States Air Force and as a Captain in the United States Marine Corps. Mr. McKenna was a rising star who also served as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia before falling victim to addiction. After robbing numerous banks to feed his habits, he ultimately served 5 years in a Federal prison. More importantly, Mr. McKenna now travels the country talking to students of all ages, military members, veterans, lawyers, professional organizations/corporations and more about the perils of drug abuse and the pitfalls related to untreated depression. Additionally, after serving time in the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Andrew also consults with attorneys and their clients regarding the Federal Bureau of Prisons process and how it assimilates best into the prison system, while helping them navigate the complex and dangerous prison culture. Mr. McKenna’s editorials and writings have been featured in national publications. Andrew has been featured as an expert on Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, Newsmax-TV and many other media outlets. McKenna can be reached directly at 518.269.8306.

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