ITHACA, N.Y. — The Ithaca Police Department is investigating several overdoses that have happened in the city over the past several days, officials said in a news release Thursday.

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Police said they are still determining if there is a connection between the heroin being used and whether the drug  is being blended with other substances, such as fentanyl.

Their investigation into the overdoses is continuing.

In the mean time, Ithaca Police Chief John Barber issued a statement reminding people, “New York state recently passed a ‘Good Samaratin Law’ that is intended to encourage people to call 911 when they or another person suffers a drug or alcohol related overdose without fear of arrest for most drug possession charges.”

A news release about the incidents from the Ithaca Police Department is below:

A used needle is discarded on the ground just a few hundred feet from Dewitt Park in downtown Ithaca. Photo by Ed Dittenhoefer / The Ithaca Voice

Over the last several days Ithaca area law enforcement agencies have responded to several calls for service involving people suspected as having overdosed on heroin.

IPD Investigators are looking into the possibility that the overdoses are related, ie the same heroin source was used by the overdose victims, and whether or not the heroin was laced with a foreign substance such as fentanyl.

However, it is still too early to conclude this.

Lab tests will assist investigators in determining if there is a link.

The following message is from Chief of Police John R. Barber:

“If you are addicted to heroin or if you know someone that is addicted to heroin, please reach out for help. There are a multitude of addiction recovery services in the Ithaca area that can and will help you. New York state recently passed a ‘Good Samaratin Law’ that is intended to encourage people to call 911 when they or another person suffers a drug or alcohol related overdose without fear of arrest for most drug possession charges. Please help us to stop heroin from wreaking any more havoc in our wonderful community.”

If you have information that would aid police in the sale or use of heroin, please contact the Ithaca Police Department.

Police Dispatch: 607-272-3245

Police Administration: 607-272-9973

Crime Stoppers Tipline: 607-697-0333

Drug Tipline: 607-330-0000

Email Tip Address: http://www.cityofithaca.org/FormCenter/Ithaca-Police-Department-

5/Ithaca-Police-Department-Tipline-47

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Jolene Almendarez

Jolene Almendarez is Managing Editor at The Ithaca Voice. She can be reached at jalmendarez@ithacavoice.com; you can learn more about her at the links in the top right of this box.