NASHVILLE, Tenn. (July 7, 2016) – The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Thursday issued a warning about a recent spike in fake Percocet pills being sold on the streets. Special Agents with the Drug Investigation Division have seen a dramatic increase in the prevalence of counterfeit prescription drugs in the state.
“In recent days, Agents in the Middle Tennessee area have seen a spike in adulterated Percocet pills being sold on the street and are warning users that these counterfeit pills have deadly consequences,” the TBI said in a press release.
The TBI says active and ongoing investigations continue into the source of these pills.
“I would have 3 people that I knew the exact day they went and got their prescriptions filled,” says Vertava Health Treatment Specialist Joey Banks. “The more you bought, obviously the cheaper they were.”
Banks, who bought drugs on the street during his active addiction, says the dosage makes a big difference. During his addiction, he ran the gamut of 10mg Lortabs to 80mg Oxycontin. His favorite Percocet were 10/325’s. There are different kinds of Percocet, but his favorite was the generic because there was little to no Tylenol in them.
The TBI says these counterfeit drugs have a very similar look and appearance to legitimate Percocet pills, but contain potentially lethal ingredients that cause law enforcement officials immediate concern. Numerous overdoses across Middle Tennessee are being attributed to this batch of dangerous drugs, and Agents are warning users that more overdoses and deaths are likely as these pills make their way to users.
“It’s not surprising to me due to the fact that once you’re hooked on taking opioids every day and then someone says they have what you want, you’re probably going to buy it and take it,” says Banks. “Fentanyl is the new everything, so you can put a little bit of that in something and it gives you your fix because it’s so strong.”
Banks says since he’s been in treatment, 4 friends have died of overdose because of drugs that they bought that had Fentanyl in them. The TBI says in the last year, dozens of case submissions from counties across Tennessee have shared a common, concerning trend: pills shaped, colored and stamped to look like a particular type of prescription medication have proven to be something different in laboratory analysis.
“You feel great, like you can clean the whole house, take care of your family and be happy,” says Banks. “You don’t really know what’s in them sometimes, and you don’t really care. You take one, but then the next time you use, you need one and a half, the next time two. If you’re buying pills on the street, you’re already on your way. I’d be willing to bet that heroin is within about 4 months of entering your body.”
TBI says Fentanyl is a pain killer 50 times as potent as heroin and can be deadly in high doses. You can read their full press release here: https://tbinews.wordpress.com/2016/07/07/tbi-issues-warning-about-recent-spike-in-fake-percocet-pills-being-sold-on-the-streets/