Coroner: Fentanyl-related deaths in Franklin County on the rise
COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) -- Franklin County Coroner Dr. Anahi Ortiz said the number of fentanyl-related overdoses in Franklin County this year is far ahead of 2016.
On Wednesday, Ortiz said there were 383 overdose deaths in Franklin County during the first nine months of 2017, more than the 353 for all of 2016.. Fueling that number is fentanyl, the coroner added.
It’s a pain Sharon Parsons knows well. Her 27-year old son, Sean Herman, and his girlfriend overdosed on drugs laced with fentanyl in 2015. The girl lived, Sean died.
Parsons said her son's problems started after taking oxycodone for an injury. She said it progressed to heroin.
“Heroin is the synthetic version of oxycodone, heroin’s pennies on the dollar," Parsons added.
On Monday, 31-year has old Shawn Point was sentenced to ten years in prison after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter charges. Point admitted to selling fentanyl-laced drugs to Herman and a Fairfield County man who died of a similar overdose days before. He was already serving a four-year sentence for the Fairfield County case.
Parsons read a victim’s statement at Point’s Franklin County sentencing to express her heartbreak.
“This has to stop. Too many people are losing their lives. Something has to be done to save lives,” Parsons said.
As a dentist, the mother of two is combining her professional and personal experience.
“I stress to my colleagues the importance of curbing the number of prescribing opiates to this age group especially,” she added.