The Rise of Fentanyl: Drug Addiction On The I-95 – Two Years On

The Rise of Fentanyl: Drug Addiction On The I-95 – Two Years On


# Oh, say can you see…? # Get him on the ground. HE GROANS
Get him on the ground. Sir! It is the number one public health
challenge of our time. Sir! Pulse. MAN CONTINUES TO GROAN It’s not a poor people thing
any more, it’s not a inner-city ghetto drug any more,
it’s everywhere. It’s hard to even recognise some
of these people when they’ve lost a lot of their humanity down here. Tomorrow’s not a promise. It’s not heroin that’s
killing our people, it’s fentanyl. MUSIC: Star-Spangled Banner I’m not going to die from this. Like, I’m not.
Not going to die from this. It was like, we went from
20 overdoses to 80 overdoses in the matter of a month and we
were like, “What the hell happened?” # In the land of the free… # I feel like it’s a waste
of my life, it’s a fucking
waste of everything. # And the home of the… # I would say that fentanyl
is the Horseman of the Apocalypse, and it’s the one named Death. # ..brave. #
SIRENS WAIL For decades, Interstate 95
has been notorious for its role in the illegal
drug trade in America. Stretching from Florida to Maine,
this corridor gives cartels easy entry to major cities. We first met Anna two years ago. She was a new resident on Baltimore’s backstreets
of addiction. A lot of people walking by. All right, come on… SHE YELPS Do not do that! Dude, you scratched me! Are you OK? Little bit of a rush? Anna was recently released from jail
after serving two weeks for prostitution –
which means two weeks on no heroin. What time is it? And since then,
she claims to have only taken pills. What time is it? Is there something in it?
Barely. If you want it, I’ll go grab it… The last two years,
I guess nothing’s changed but everything’s changed.
I know that sounds really weird but I’m still down here, I’m still jumping
from house to house. I’m still with the same guy. I feel a little trapped. I’m scared to shoot up again
but I know eventually I probably will if I stay down here. I’m not sure
if I see my future right now. I mean really when
I think about it, I don’t know what I’m going to do in three years,
I don’t know what I’m going to do tomorrow, I don’t know
what I’m going to do in an hour. I mean, all I can do is hope
that I’ll do the right thing, you know, and not
what I’m doing now. This is gang-run west Baltimore, the epicentre of Baltimore’s
opioid epidemic. Patty, a former addict,
formed Angels of Addiction just after her son died
of a heroin overdose. Here, walk on my feet. A lifeline to the lost,
she has fed and clothed addicts and their families
on these streets for years. Any time, 24/7. I lost my only son in 2002,
and God blessed me with many, many children and
it’s an honour to serve them and they’re very precious people,
a lot suffer from the disease of addiction, it’s a very big
problem, an epidemic here. I could never count throughout
the years how many people that I’ve helped or known
that have died from this disease. At least 100 people
in the last few years. It’s sad because they’re my… You know, next time we come,
somebody might say, oh, so-and-so didn’t make it. That happens often. Especially since this
fentanyl has been out. Fentanyl is very dangerous,
because it’s stronger than the heroin and people are
overdosing on it and it’s, you know, really scary and very
alarming and we’re… We’re losing a lot of people. I chase fentanyl,
I chase carfentanil because it’s the only dope
I can feel any more. But it is a big problem,
because it’s so powerful, people that have been clean
for years and just recently decided to relapse, erm, they end up OD-ing. You know,
off of a half or a quarter pill. That’s what it is, it’s not heroin. I used to get high,
I don’t get high no more. I’m just addicted to the cut,
fentanyl. They stick it in capsules
and then you stick it in your arm,
not knowing what you’re getting. And it could be a little bit
of nothing or a whole lot of too much. And I’ve had friends drop… Several, more than several, handfuls, that have had
a little bit too much. Every day coming down here,
seeing my friends, I would hear about one of them
overdosing or dying. It’s very dangerous and
it’s killing a lot of people. The sickness of addiction
is when you hear people overdosing and dying, the addict wants to know,
where’s that stuff? Because they want the stronger,
longer-lasting stuff. But they don’t realise
that that’s that next hit, that may be the last. The bottle’s empty. Thank you, ma’am. I appreciate it. Probably nine out of ten people
do fentanyl and don’t even know it. None of us know what we’re doing. A lot of the people that we know
either died or moved or went to jail. Some go to rehab
but they always come back. Everyone out here
is hooked on fentanyl. It’s not really so much the heroin,
like I said, it’s not even in it. The fentanyl’s what
everybody’s into it now. I said I’m not going to leave
my boyfriend ever. And if he’s down here,
I’m down here. Either he goes to jail,
or I go to jail, we’ve never been clean together
since I’ve been with him. Well, since we’ve gotten high. She said she hasn’t used
no needles, so I’m proud of her, she’s been doing good. But she always threatens me,
so that’s her threat, and that would make my heart,
I told her it would break my heart. We meet Anna as she searches
for her morning fix. Addiction seems to be fighting back. Hi. Hiya. Hiya. Yes, I’m fine,
you don’t have to ask. SHE MUMBLES I’m fine. How was your night? Great! Tell us what happened?
Nothing. The last thing I feel like doing
is fucking talking right now. Yeah, I’m still here. Anna and Dave squat in abandoned
houses, moving frequently to avoid being found by landlords or police. The landlord actually ended up
coming while we were inside so we had to hurry up and go hide
in one of the rooms and then escape out the house
when he wasn’t looking. So I again got
interrupted on my sleep. What did you spend your money on? I got a pill, he got a pill
and then we each bought crack after we got our deal. That we needed, like gas and stuff. What were the pills? I don’t know, dope? What else? Then you said you had to go
get some more money, how did you do that? Go and get a date. Anna prostitutes herself
for the money needed to buy drugs for herself and her boyfriend Dave. It never ends, you know? I wasn’t even
planning on going outside. It’s just that we didn’t
have any money. So because of that,
it took me for ever to get a date. What time of day were
you out trying to get a date? It was night-time. What time of night? Something like five in the morning. But I didn’t go until
like one in the morning. I can’t remember,
but I usually go in and out, I don’t just… What I mean is I usually go outside,
I’ll get a date then I hurry. Get the money, either rob them
or just do a super date and come back home and then
I go back out, before morning. Or it depends, sometimes I
don’t even know I want to do drugs and we hang out. Most people, when they are 23,
have a goal in life, have wishes, desires. Do you have any? No. I don’t plan no more. Why not? I guess because it’s like
too late to fix. Anna still claims that
she has not injected heroin since her release from jail. Her body tells a different story. She heads off in search for a place
to stay for the night. But that wasn’t her first priority. I was just sniffing it just to try
it and make sure the powder’s… Like, heroin’s bitter,
but fentanyl has kind of like got a sweeter taste to it. Anna is back in the
full grip of her addiction. I don’t know how to live
in any other way no more. Am I wrong? Like, we don’t know what else to do,
do you understand? Like, when people break their arm
and legs, they need rehab to walk. Like, we need rehab to learn
how to live, like all over again. Name’s Nathan O’Brien. I’m from Kentucky. My name is Olivia Light,
I’m from Ojai, California. My name’s Ed, I’m from
New Haven, Connecticut. I’m Johnny Montasanno,
I’m from Long Island, New York. My name’s Al, I’m from Ocean County,
New Jersey. My name’s Joe Wilkins,
I’m from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. My name’s Tommy,
I’m from Birmingham, Alabama. My name’s Millie,
I’m from Currituck, North Carolina. I’m addicted to heroin.
I was addicted to heroin and prescription opiates.
I was addicted to heroin. I struggled with heroin
for four years. I’m a recovering heroin addict. I struggle with prescription
pills and heroin. My addiction was
pain pills and heroin. I struggled with heroin. Over the course of the last
two years, I wouldn’t say that it got better. I would say that it’s gotten worse. We see more and more patients
coming in that have experienced multiple overdoses
prior to coming in. I really don’t see an end in it. I don’t see it getting
better at all. Jodi has dealt with the
opioid crisis since she was a child. Her mother is a lifelong addict. And she now runs an addiction
recovery centre in Florida. This addiction changed me
from being a talented, ambitious young kid into basically a degenerate,
just a shadow. It took my family,
my friends, my freedom. It took everything. My addiction took my self-worth,
my dignity, my self-respect. My health, my friends and family,
my education, money. What are they going to do with me? I couldn’t get a job,
I couldn’t keep the job. Most of my family members
consider me dead. I’m thankful that we have a place
where patients can come, seek help in a safe environment to start working on the reasons
why they turn to drugs. But every single day
it’s a multitude of new people. It’s like the floodgates have opened
and it’s just non-stop. I’ve been clean
for four and a half years. And two months,
I’ll have five years. Currently, I’ve been clean
over 100 days. Just over one year. I’ve been clean for,
the 23rd of this month, it will be 60 days. Since March 20, 2017. I mean, the date resonates
in my brain, March 19, 2016. That’s when I got clean
and it wasn’t easy, but it was the most glorious
experience of my life. Brittney seems to have travelled
a long way from her days of addiction. But the beaches of Jacksonville,
Florida are only a couple of hours’ drive from Orlando,
where Jodi first introduced us to Brittney two years ago. When Brittney admitted to
The Recovery Village, she absolutely was
ready for treatment and admitted the fact
that she had an addiction problem. She had OD’d several times –
very, very close calls – and she was ready. I’m addicted to heroin. SHE SOBS I want to stop, but I can’t. It’s that right here – I remember
thinking how would it feel if my mother would have seen me
at her kitchen table, where, you know,
I grew up eating at. I don’t know, it’s just when
you’re in addiction, you don’t care. Find the Narcan, find the Narcan. Seeing that video, watching her at this table… ..and nodding off as they call it, nodding and falling asleep and then pretty much
drooling, it was horrible. It was really devastating
to see that. I was sick for three months,
like, throwing up constantly. I thought it was a bad flu. I got all these different
tests done, one of them was a pregnancy test. I remember her coming back
and telling me, “You’re positive.” And I was like,
“I’m positive for what?” And she told me I was pregnant
and I immediately started bawling. Brittney had a baby girl,
beautiful, sweet baby girl. Say cheese, baby, say cheese. And about a month after that,
sadly, Brittney relapsed again. And this was very devastating. My mom… Me and my mom got in a
fight earlier in that morning. My mom said some things
she didn’t mean and I was already in a very bad mental place. I went out to get formula
and ended up at a gas station and an old dealer ended up
being at that same gas station. Ended up purchasing a bag,
but I came home and we had a nice dinner, held my baby,
I sat right here. We had been sitting
here at the table, chitchatting and the baby
was snoozing. Brittney had asked me, that
she wanted to go to the bathroom. So the baby started
waking up and I held the baby. Then Brittney was in the bathroom. I remember sitting on the toilet
and talking to my mom from the living room. And I snorted the whole bag. My mom’s in the other
room with my child and, and I just kind of nodded off
and I felt OK for a little bit. And my mom’s voice got distant
and then everything went black. And I had the baby in my arms
and I go into the bathroom and she is passed out, gurgling
and drooling from the mouth, leaning against the wall,
sitting on the toilet. Um… It was devastating, it was scary. I had to get her to wake up
and I ran into the living room, the baby was sleeping again. I put her down in her little bed
and ran back into the bathroom shaking and screaming at Brittney
and smacking her on her face to try to get her to come out of it. And she’d finally came out of it,
I’m at the same time trying to call 911. And came out of it to my mom
holding my baby in her arms, on the phone with paramedics,
trying to bring me to. I just felt nothing but anger. Anger, frustration again, and I really, I was so angry at her,
so angry and so hurt, and so confused how
she could do that. I did not know what happened. But once I started
putting things together, I was just kind of
in disbelief at myself. So… I wasn’t thinking about my daughter,
I wasn’t, I didn’t care about my mom or how she felt. I just felt so depressed. And not good enough,
like, I just felt like my daughter didn’t deserve me.
She deserved better. I felt like my mother
could raise her, I mean, it’s just… But, yeah. You just don’t think
that they’re going do this again, especially now,
especially with a baby, especially knowing
that you have that beautiful little baby, how could do you this? This drug pulls them in,
like none other. It steals their dreams,
it steals their lives. It’s almost stole my grandbaby’s
mother from us again. I’ve told Brittney that one
of the saddest things I would ever have to do would be to have to tell my granddaughter about her mother, that her mother was an addict,
and she tried very hard to get past this addiction,
but was unable to, and died from it. In 2017, we had just under 72,000
Americans die of drug overdoses. Jay, Jay look at me. That’s a phenomenal number. It’s almost hard to imagine. Has he taken drugs or anything?
I have no idea. It is the number one public health
challenge of our time. Opioids are now the biggest
drug epidemic in American history. The number of deaths from
opioid abuse have skyrocketed over the past 15 years… Killing tens of thousands
of Americans every year. That’s more deaths than
from car accidents and from guns. Emergency services overwhelmed. Another family burying a loved one. She overdosed in her car,
while her two-year-old daughter was in the back seat. CHILD CRIES CHILD SOBS In certain age groups,
between 25 and 34 in the United States,
20% of all deaths are due to opioid overdoses. Of that 72,000, the majority
are opioids and the majority of the opioids are the synthetic
products, such as fentanyl. Fentanyl is taking the opioid
epidemic to a new level of urgency. Fentanyl, a drug more
powerful than heroin. It’s 50-100 times
more potent than morphine. Fentanyl’s so potent, you could die
with the syringe still in your arm. It’s so potent,
so incredibly potent, that it only takes a few
milligrams to cause a death, and now we see fentanyl lacing
not only the heroin supply, but we see it in cocaine and
methamphetamine, in all sorts of drugs because
it’s dirt cheap. If heroin’s the devil, to continue with
the biblical analogy, I would say that fentanyl is
a Horseman of the Apocalypse and it’s the one named Death, because it just brings death. All right. Yeah, if you just go
straight here I’ll show you some of the more affected areas. Kensington is Philadelphia’s
Ground Zero for opioids. And it has just been
declared a disaster zone. Dan’s family has also
battled with addiction. He now fights on behalf
of those still struggling. I mean, this becomes
what the neighbourhood is. You see, most people around here
you’re going to see are high. You know, so the neighbourhood
is almost entirely consistent of people who are abusing. Can’t walk through
this neighbourhood without being offered drugs. It’s hard to even
recognise some of these people, it just seems like
they’re in a jungle. And they’ve lost a lot
of their humanity down here. Heroin’s been in Philadelphia
for decades, this is not a new story. It’s just that recently the death
toll has gotten so out of hand and the farther you look,
the more you realise how truly desperate things have become. I believe in 2016
we had 272 homicides and over 900 overdose deaths. Last year we had around
300 homicides and 1,200 overdosed. So it went from being
three times the murder rate to four times the murder rate
in one year. If you look at the charts
of what opioids are killing people or what drugs are killing people,
in recent years fentanyl has just taken off
literally just like a rocket, but now because of, you know,
how deep some of these people are in the throes of addiction
and how high their tolerance is, fentanyl has become introduced
slowly into the mix so that people can get high again,
because what some people don’t realise, is that a lot
of these people who are using drugs on a regular basis aren’t
necessarily using it to get high, they’re using it to maintain
their addiction, make their headache go away, to sort of regulate. Any amount of fentanyl would kill
most people who aren’t addicted almost instantly. If it continues to get worse,
like, where does it go from here? I am a heroin user. I’ve been using heroin
for about 20 years. Alex is just one of the 70,000
active heroin users currently living in Philadelphia. This ain’t no life for nobody,
I mean. This is like the bottom
of the barrel right here. This ain’t for nobody. I don’t wish this on my worst enemy. I generally have to score about
six times a day to keep myself well, just to be able to function, really. It’s all it comes down to,
just to be able to function. I hope that it’s fentanyl
because I’ve been doing it for quite some time, and heroin
that’s actually heroin will not get me well. My body actually
craves the fentanyl. It’s different,
it’s a different high, it’s a different feeling and I’m not
really sure what the difference is between the heroin and the fentanyl. I don’t know. But, it’s what my body
craves and without it, I’ll be just as sick as I am now. I feel like it’s a waste of my life. I mean a got a lot of people
in my corner who care about me, a lot of people in my family
that love and care about me, and want to see me do well,
and I’m not doing nothing except sticking a needle in my arm,
every day, all day long. Waste. Waste of time, waste
of energy, waste of money. It’s a fucking waste of everything. It’s just a waste. In need of a place to sleep
Alex heads to an abandoned house that he and other addicts
sometimes use to crash. What’s going on? Not too much. It makes me do things
that I normally wouldn’t do. Lie. Manipulate. I’ve never been like the person
to lie and tell stories, and to, you know,
try and get over it, I was not like that. But my addiction has
definitely made me that way. Makes me feel alone,
it makes me feel vulnerable. Makes me feel scared. Makes me feel unsure
of what my purpose here is. Manchester Fire And Emergency. Request for an ambulance
at Manchester. It’s the Shell gas station,
the patient is in the bathroom. She has overdosed. It’s going to be for
a female in her 20s. My caller states he went into clean, found her overdosing in the bathtub,
she was not conscious. The caller states
that she has overdosed, the patient’s going to be just
outside the church on the side. Where are the people located? She said they’re in
the middle of the street. Two people are overdosing. For a male in his 50s found
unconscious, not breathing. There’s a needle next to him. 35-year-old male.
He is not conscious, not breathing. Overdose. I don’t know what to do!
Stop talking for a moment. I don’t know what’s happening
to this generation, you know, I look out my window, you know, I’m like looking at Ground Zero,
for the United States, for fentanyl,
you know, and fentanyl dust. It’s like what the heck am I seeing? Truck 1811 – response. Outside of 340, 340 Hanover Street
for a man down, possible overdose. SIREN WAILS We went from 20 overdoses to 80
overdoses in a matter of a month and we were like,
“What the hell happened here?” Why did it hit us? Because of synthetic
heroin, it was fentanyl. We don’t have a heroin problem,
we have a fentanyl problem and we really realised that
back 2015, when we got hit so hard, but we’ve been chasing it
ever since, to try and get ahead of this and it’s really tough
to get ahead of something like this. I talk to these guys all the time,
when I’m down here, I’m pretty invested in my personnel
and I worry about what they do. I go to a lot of the calls that they
go on because I just want to see how they’re,
you know, handling things, and make sure that… I know there’s going to be some
compassion fatigue, it’s really… It’s really difficult to see this. I mean,
when I grew up in the Fire Service we never saw this much,
you know, you know, death. He’s not unconscious,
but you don’t really know, you know, when he used, you know,
what’s going to happen. They don’t want to hit him
with Narcan right away, because if they do,
he’s going to be sick. Right now they want to get
him out as, you know, as slowly as possible, so what
they’re going to probably do, is we’ll get him in the back of the
ambulance, get him to the hospital, and get a monitor on him and probably give him some Narcan
via an IV and so on. All right, Dale, we probably
should go to the hospital, get you checked out there. Oh, I don’t think I need to go
to on the side hospital. Well, yeah, you’re not… All right. Give me your hand there,
we’ll take you, we’re going to walk you back here. Tell us what happened. This gentleman was seen
on the sidewalk, unconscious, with very limited breathing,
and had just done heroin as he reported. He was actually one of the honest
ones where he admitted to doing it. Sometimes they come up
and they don’t admit to doing the heroin and, or fentanyl. And this time he did and we know
we’ve got to take him to the hospital to have him checked
out and have him not lay down somewhere elsewhere no-one
can find him and him passing away. You go on calls like that,
in this neighbourhood, and it’s a lot,
it’s the aftermath of – you ask them where the needle is. “I threw it in the street.” OK, well now, where is it?
Who plays with it? Is it an adult that picks
it up and throws it away? Or is it a child that plays with it? Then it turns into he said he did
half fentanyl, half heroin, mixed in a bag. So the little baggy
that he has, where’s that? He probably threw it on the ground. A kid plays with that,
sees it, is it candy, whatever? It’s that whole,
from my personal stand point, it’s frustrating,
because you see it all the time, every single day. Since this crisis has hit,
we go out on these types of calls over and over and over
again, all day long. So 10% of the overdoses that we get
called to for an opiate, that results in death. So how did you make it over here?
You just walked over? Yeah. Yeah, have you
ever overdosed before? Doug, can you get up? OK. You gotta. You can’t stay here! Dude, we were talking
and having like a full conversation and you just fell asleep
like, mid conversation. Douglas has obviously
overdosed on opiates. He admitted to using
fentanyl, so, yeah. This guy needs help. He needs somewhere to go,
and you know, and like I told him, it’s like there’s help
for him, you know. It’s, but it’s getting
to these people, and you know, hey, I don’t judge you people
but you don’t know where they came from, you don’t know what kind
of trauma was in their lives, so, he needs help
more than anything else. He’s sick. So… With no increase in
budgets or personnel, Manchester Fire Department now
spends 70% of their time responding to drug-related calls. Layla. Layla. Layla. Wake up. We got here, the police
officer came by the park, was doing some surveillance. Gentleman here saw her passed out, called 911, unresponsive,
we came here. She showed
all the symptoms of an overdose. Right away we administered Narcan,
started breathing for her. He’s going to give her another
Narcan, so this will be the
second one that we put in, She didn’t
respond to the first one. So we’re going to put
in a second one. If this one doesn’t work,
they’ll probably do an IV and then put it in that way. Narcan is used to block the effects
of opioids in an attempt to reverse overdoses. Now they’re going to put
the Narcan in by IV, because the two nasals got her
to come round a little bit but not fully, so… There we go. Hi, Layla! Careful, Layla. It’s just unfortunate, you know,
daytime at a park, you know. You know, you think you’re going
for a walk in the park, you know,
the next thing is an overdose, so… If this crisis right now don’t worry
you then there’s something wrong, you’re not paying attention to it. Every day,
people are out on the highway, driving down that I-95 quarter,
to the source city or source cities where these organisations
have these drugs readily available. It’s all day long,
it’s Monday through Friday, and on the weekends
and it’s night-time, daytime and during business hours,
the product is always available. But look, New Hampshire,
as of this morning hasn’t had a heroin overdose death. It’s not heroin
that’s killing our people, it’s fentanyl,
and it’s changed the game. It’s cheap, it’s easy
to manufacture for these cartels. They don’t want to worry
about opium any more, they don’t have to
worry about the plant, sun, water, how they’re going
to grow these, growing cycles, they don’t worry about any of that,
they can mass-produce this stuff in the same labs
that they have set up, that they’ve used, you know,
when they were making methamphetamine or any other drug,
and they’re able to manufacture it faster, and cheaper. Working with local law enforcement,
the DEA has identified dealers operating from a park. He’s getting into a blue BMW. He picked up. He’s looking around. The blue BMW is leaving. So you can see how this works,
we’re set up in the park, we’re sort of
at a position where we can see what’s happening,
we see customers coming in. He’s coming to the park. They’re getting served,
they’re getting back in the car. Our guys are calling it out
to the surveillance units, the surveillance units are taking
them away to a place where, whether it’s in New Hampshire
or Massachusetts, we can safely
make these traffic stops. Straight ahead. OK, we have another
New Hampshire customer, guys. Another
New Hampshire customer arriving. A vehicle possibly going on 95. We’re up here in New Hampshire now,
we just stopped a car that we saw it pick up from that same park,
and this woman too had the stuff stuffed inside of her body cavity. She’s pulling
it out for the troopers. Here’s the evidence here
that they just removed from this female here
on this traffic stop. Again, fentanyl,
driving up into New Hampshire to pollute our communities. The cartels will never change
what they’re doing. They have found an avenue
now with fentanyl, where they can make so much money. The other thing is we’re seeing,
and this really frightens me is, the dealers are now mixing
fentanyl with everything. We’re seeing an increase
of fentanyl mixed with cocaine, Fentanyl mixed with methamphetamine,
and if you think about it, it doesn’t even make sense,
because really they do opposite things in the body
and in the brain, but to the dealer they almost look at this
fentanyl now as a magic dust that’s just a money maker. They think if I just put
a little bit of this in there I’ll be able to spread that product
further and make more money. So they’re trying to figure out
how to get that recipe to the right point, where they can
still addict everybody, but have them come back
as much as they can, and that’s really
what’s happened here. They’ve killed more people
than war has. I like the person I am today. I used to hate myself. When we met Steven,
I didn’t know him previously, he didn’t want to hear
anything about recovery. He didn’t want nothing
to do with the conversation, even though he was kind
and sweet and respectful. I knew he just wanted to get up
and go get high that day. He had it written all over his face. I’ve seen it. I’ve seen that scene, like,
and it disgusts me how I looked. Couldn’t even keep my eyes open. I couldn’t form a sentence. Slurring, and like,
I believe I was very close to overdosing that day. Runs my life. I don’t need it
but I feel like I do. Never could get enough of it. And it just… It kind of just fed itself,
it just took everything from me, and I, and I gave it, I gave
it everything I had, willingly. It kinda took control. I’m not the same person,
you know what I mean? I’m not that person. I believe drugs, heroin especially,
completely changes who you are. It will make you do things
that you never thought you’d do. Make you into somebody
that you’re not, you know. Steve had hit rock-bottom
and just accepted an offer from Jodi to leave Pennsylvania
for the first time in his life, and fly to Florida for treatment. Hi, Jodi. Hi, Steven, how are you, dear? How you doing? I’m good. I’m so glad you made it.
How was your trip? Good? OK. Feeling OK? Yeah, sure. I wasn’t… But I know it’s not too late,
that can still make it right. What I told them. After three months in rehab,
Steve left Florida clean and in search of a new life. One without the temptations
of America’s opioid crisis. Steve and I have kept
in touch here and there, throughout the course
of the last two years. I know that he’s still clean
and sober, I know that he’s living in Kentucky,
you know, I haven’t spoken to him on the phone. SHE KNOCKS ON DOOR We just text every couple of months. Oh, my God! Hi. Oh, how did I know he had
some tricks up his sleeve. Hello.
Oh, hi, how are you doing? I’m good. How are you?
I’m good! Oh, my God,
look how healthy you look, boy! You look amazing. Yeah? Uh-huh.
I’m glad to see you. I’m glad to see you. Oh, that’s awesome,
that’s such a surprise. Come check out the house.
All right. Sounds great. So you left Florida,
went back to Pittsburgh, the Pittsburgh area. Yeah. And wasn’t going to work or… I had an opportunity to move here,
and I kind of jumped on it, you know what I mean,
for the first time in my life I was able to just pick up and move. Before, I was so afraid to leave. You were afraid to leave
what, afraid to leave? I was afraid to leave the area
I was in because I didn’t know where to get the next one, cos I wouldn’t know where to get it
if I left. Right, it was the… Right, so the drugs kept you captive
in so many different ways. Yeah, yeah, it kept me there,
in the same area. Now, I had the freedom
that I didn’t have to stay around the area,
because I didn’t know where I was
going to get the next one. Does it exist here? Like, it technically
exists everywhere? It exists. It’s everywhere. Right, so,
I mean, it’s happening here? It definitely is here,
I’ve seen it a little bit. I know an addict when I see one. It’s definitely here. You have to go looking for it.
If I wanted to find it. It doesn’t come knocking
at your door or drop you off like a pizza, right. Yeah, like back
home, it was right in your face… Sure. ..and it came and found you. I really like it here. It’s really nice.
I feel better than I’ve ever felt. I don’t remember a time where
I felt this good about myself. Two years ago, I couldn’t even
dream that I could be here, doing what I’m doing,
and as happy as I am. If there’s one individual – Steven –
who I know that we had a hand in saving his life, it’s worth it. Nobody’s life’s better
than someone else. We all deserve a chance. At success. And to live.
Just some of us have lost our way. It’s not a poor people thing
any more, it’s not an inner city ghetto drug any more,
it’s everywhere and it’s killing people left and right,
every single day. Something’s got to be done. It’s got to change. What’s it going to take?
You know what I mean? Someone can see the power like that,
losing their child too it. Before they open their eyes to it? Like, something’s got to give now,
or there, eventually, there’s going to be no coming back from it. I just hope we haven’t
reached that point already. My story doesn’t end here. This isn’t the last time
anyone’s going to see me. Just I…
I’m not going to die from this. Like, I’m not.
Not going to die from this. I want my daughter to be proud
of me, and I want my… I want people to be proud of me. You know, I want
to be proud of myself. If I was your mother right know,
what would you want to say to her? Oh, mom, I’m sorry. I know, I mean, I can’t tell her, “Hey, wait, couple more years I’ll
get better,” I can’t tell her that, I don’t know. That’s what sucks about this. Tomorrow’s not a promise. For her or for me. Oh, my greatest hope
is that I can beat the addiction. That I can just go
back to being Alex, that I can be a good son,
good brother, good father, that’s like my greatest hope. That I can beat this,
walk away from it, and just not look back. We lost contact with Alex,
so went back to search for him. But he was nowhere to be found. # Gave proof through the night # That our flag was still there # O say does that
star-spangled banner yet wave # O’er the land of the free # And the home of the… # ..brave? #

100 Replies to “The Rise of Fentanyl: Drug Addiction On The I-95 – Two Years On”

  1. We all want to “believe” that drug addiction is a “disease” or do they call it a disease cause the “experts” are looking for state or government funding? It’s not a disease and you are not sick. Somebody has to tell all these people that the “party” was over a long time ago. It took me 25 years (25 years of $300/day 90-94% pure coke habit at “wholesale” values, do the math) to finally hit bottom, went from running the streets to sleeping in the streets. Lost family, kids, wife, house, parents, a 6 digit/year salary and the #1 pension in the U.S. Sitting in jail I realized that I didn’t care or loved anybody but me and I also realized the degenerate, fck up I truly was all these years. I wasn’t sick I was simply a POS that destroyed everyone around me. You are not sick just selfish. Just look at the lady in the supermarket, do you really think she gives a shit about her baby ?? She Never did and chances are she never will. These kids are the victims not the users. Stop crying and Straighten yourselves and your panties out fast otherwise Jail or death are your other two choices so chop chop choose either one and get the hell out of the way.

  2. I’ve lost 4 friends to opioids. My latest friend died yesterday morning. Drugs are directly from hell sent to kill hurting people. I was a drug addict myself and the love of God set me free. Jesus truly saves! No joke! Cry out to Him, He won’t reject you!

  3. I just love how in so many of these opiate or drug videos, the comments are full of support and love and it just warms my heart to see that instead of people blaming it on the victims of overdose.

  4. "JUST…SAY…NO!!!!"

    Isn't that what y'all use to tell blacks and Mexicans during the crack epidemic? How about we lock these addicts up and give them mandatory lengthy sentences? Wanna go hard on drugs don't half ass it. Go all in.

  5. I know my story of addiction is nothing compare to hard drugs, Im 22 and 3 months clean from my nicotine addiction of 7 years and prescription painkillers, tarmadol for 5 months , started smoking when i was 14 and taking prescription pills less than a year ago, and now im clean from all of that, got my degree and now working full time as a finance analyst in one of the biggest company in the aviation industry, it was not easy for me, it took me 4 years of continuous failed “stop it all” attempts and now made it to 3 months, i know its just cigarettes and bits of tarmadols here and there, but this addiction is real to me and it kills me slowly, i was tired and my sleeping pattern was abnormal, and i couldnt breath normally for years as my chest started hurting after 4 years into it. It affected my study big time as i couldnt focus as i needed to smoke every half an hour when im under alot of stress. It was so much trouble, in just 2 weeks i could see the differences in which i forced myself to keep going on clean and see better changes say by day. One thing for sure, time helps me healed because day by day, the toxic in our body disappears, the toxic that makes me addicted, the nicotine. My heart goes out to everyone thats suffering from any addiction out there, believe in yourself that you wanna get clean and just give time sometimes. Every day off is a day counted, just give yourself more time, give your body more days to heal, and trust in yourself, give time sometimes, im sure u can do it!

  6. I pray for everyone that is caught up in the grip of addiction.
    I shot heroin for 12 years without a day off.
    I am coming up on 21 years clean next month.
    Clean date is October 30, 1998.
    Long before Suboxone or Subutex.
    My only options back in 98 were methadone or Buffenex shots or cold turkey.
    I tried them all.
    Ended up going cold turkey at the end and suffered through it.
    I was just sick and tired of living like that.
    I put my family through hell. Lost everything that was precious to me including my relationships with friends and family. Now 21 years later I have everything back tenfold.
    Please never lose hope.
    This is not easy!
    Get into the rooms and surround yourself around people with lots of clean time and who are serious about their clean time. Avoid the people who are not serious and that keep relapsing.
    And most of all people.
    I don’t mean to sound cliché but you have to get rid of people places and things.
    I fired everybody in my life that I’ve ever used with.
    Never went back to any place I ever used at!
    And never lose hope or give up the fight! You are worth the fight!
    God bless!

  7. I used to be prescribed fentanyl, oxycontin, mscontin, actiq, duragesic, opana, fentora, all kinds of stuff. They thought I was dying, but it turned out to be lyme disease, which is not really a killer. But I quit shooting heroin in 2012 and all of it *August 8th 2014*. It's much more interesting and fun to be sober. This shit made 10 years go by like a blink. I lost my best friend and my only brother to opiate overdose.

  8. The problem isn't just that the drugs are addictive per say, that is only a certain percentage of the problem, but how it became an addiction in the first place and how it was all set up to cause people to fall into addictive behavior which are difficult to get out of. Something deeper than just "Oh it's the drugs." It is much more complicating than that. It could be a traumatic experience which leads people into destructive behavior. Only two experiences can cause this… Things that should happen, but didn't and things that shouldn't had happened, but did. The justice system doesn't help the matter either. These people are living in their own Hell the last thing they need is further punishment from the world. I'm so happy for those who open up their own tormented past and are now fighting against it. I don't like it when people say it is a disease. That isn't the correct category for addiction. I say it is more along the lines of a disorder. The fact there is a pill to help people control urges demonstrate that this is beyond a disease. You can overcome it, but there is no cure. It will always follow you. It is always in the back of your deep consciousness. Also, you can't give addiction to other people simply by touching them. The common cold is a disease. Addiction is a disorder.

  9. I love you all my fellow addict sisters and brothers. I almost cant watch videos like this, because it hurts too much realising I could be that person when I was born in the US. Heroin and fentanyl are fast killers, so I was lucky too never being introduced by it. Seeing the scale it happens over there, it makes me real scared. The education and opinion on addiction has too change. Not only the addict suffers, all the people around them too. Think about that.

  10. The cure for withdrawals is a root bark called ibogaine. This is something you order online because legally it's a grey zone. It will cut out the withdrawals almost completely. Some people don't even throw up at all. You will be sweating and detoxing for the next few weeks but it will cut out the hardcore wds. Not a joke, this is not like kratom or some opiate substitute.

  11. Cares more about getting high than her own baby, what a worthless piece of crap no matter how you look at it or try to minimize it. Absolutely no acceptable excuses. America is NOT losing the war on drugs…this is getting rid of those who are easily influenced and who are a liability in a society where strong opinion is not an allowance but a requirement.

  12. Iam recovering from a codein addiction it’s soo hard I’ve gone through withdrawals but 1 yeR clean still fighting to drop on my subutex currently on 4 mg I started on 16 mg it has been so hard but I’ve made it almost three please stop taking it before it takes you!,,,,,,!,,,,!!

  13. Some hard life events. I got prescribed antidepressants 11 yrs back and I got misdiagnosed by docs .I didn't need that much drugs.i lived a life of sadness.i lost job health relationships. Now at 32 unmarried,on my parents,unemployed since 7 months. I informed truth about my fiancee and her family about my health. they broke off .I wish for death. But may be God wants me to live. I met my psychiatrist and told them now I will come to you when I ll be free from medicines.i also want to live a good life. I never did any drugs or alcohol or even cigarette. Still get caught in depression. Comments here give me hope that if these people can come clean from such high drugs.i can also come clean from antidepressants.love and prayer to all of you . Please pray for me also.

  14. I truly believe that not only is it a money maker for the cartels but it is a way for countries that are our enemies to kill Americans it is a weapon of war.

  15. You better stop all packages coming in from China and Mexico and if you clip that off, watch what happens. No BS stats either. Check every single one!! Stop every one. Until then, they aren’t doing due diligence!

  16. Every human being should have the right to do whatever they want with their body. Who are you to say otherwise? I'm a conservative who supports Trump even though I don't agree with some of his stances. Liberals have a view of conservatives and ppl on the Right and it couldn't be more wrong. We really do agree on more than we disagree on. I was and always will be a drug addict. I've been homeless for years in the past. 99% of the "help" that is out there for addicts is a complete waste of money, time and energy. An addict needs to do what they do until THEY decide they want to do something different. Then they need a place far away from the kinds of places they've been using in. I only got clean because I found such a place in a nice neighborhood. I was lucky. Most nice areas like that would not allow ppl like us in their communities.

    Addiction is a sign of a special person. A person who sees and can not avoid the truth and reality of life and society. They get high in an attempt to hide from this understanding and in doing so they destroy themselves. It is very hard for ppl like this to stay clean because reality is very hard to face, especially when you were born without the ability to live a meaningless life and be happy. All addicts must find meaning or they will die.

  17. Parents of addicts, you love your children and you don't know what to do. I can tell you what ALL of you MUST do if you want any chance of seeing your children again. You know what I mean when I say that. When they are using they are not the people you know and love. I'm an addict and I wish my own mother would have gotten the advice I'm about to give you and followed it. My life might have been completely different. The lives of my mother, brother and sister might have been completely different. You need to gather up all the love you have for your child and take a huge leap of faith. You MUST STOP giving them money and support of kind. You can't see it but you are killing them by helping them. Your love is the weakness their addiction will use to enslave and torture them to death through shame and regret for having exploited you though that love. This shame will keep them high until the day they die. DO NOT give in. Love them enough to go though the pain of saying no to them and watching them cry and say horrible things to you. There is light at the end of the tunnel, but you MUST be willing to let them die. I wish there was another way, but there isn't.

    Pain is life. It's what lends contrast to the joy of good times. Know there will be good times in the future.

  18. If you don't think this is chemical warfare in the class war we are all ignoring, then what els is it?

    There is no profit to be made in helping these desperate people and so much to gain for the privileged corporate so called upper-class.

    They are killing people who do not consume or produce. This is all a part of a plan to destroy the so called lower class.

  19. This is not negative but if they want to get high that’s on them. I don’t feel bad for ppl who choose to do drugs when they know the consequences to those choices. It’s 2019 you can google anything and watch on YouTube how bad these drugs are.

    I pray for them butt make better choices in life. Stop trying to escape reality.

  20. America needs to concentrate on their own country and stop worrying about invading other countries. Other countries dont wanna end up like this….The Land Of The Free

  21. This whole video is so sad but I was really sad mostly at the start when the little girl or boy was checking his mother after she overdosed 😭😭😭😭😭

  22. The crack epidemic was years and years ago. It took an incredible amount of lives in the places where today's addicts were afraid to even go. Different was overlooked and ignored. Poor communities, people and families losing loved ones. No news, no epidemic, no national coverage or emergency. Now, almost every opioid documentary is "wow" majority whites – kids, teens and genXrs and it's time for the country to come together? Interesting. Similarities for certain. That may be true… it just might be. What's different about this crisis? I'll say it's moving at an incredible rate and it's hitting all levels of income homes. Middle class, slightly lower, slightly higher and spreading. Connected to employment and also how cities all across the county are folding into themselves. Businesses are closing, malls are gone, shopping is online, SOCIAL is online. People are more disconnected then ever before, in the entire history of the human race. Drugs, addiction and dying with continual increases and huge spikes in depression and anxiety. A way to deal with the reality of today… Notice the differences? Population climbing, jobs and small business declining at an incredible rate. Thanks Internet! Thanks Social Media for destroying youth. Thanks Amazon and all the places that are now ONLY online. People don't interact anymore. Less and less of everything meaningful. Kids don't even play. They don't even sell many toys anymore. Families are a mess. Thanks Internet and technology! Kids growing up this way, mental cases, while their parents are totally trying to deal with it all. Scary is now. Take a look around your own neighborhood. See any kids outside? Malls? Games? Nope! Head cases. And then what? The parents find drugs too. All of this, while grandma and grandpa don't understand… It's everywhere for a reason. People need people – everyone does. Coping mechanisms and escape. Where do YOU go? How do YOU cope? The disease of addiction is real folks. It's spreading. But the root cause? It's actually obvious. The cure? People need people. Notice what all the addicts are saying? To cope, to escape, to deal. Cope with what? Escape what? Deal with what? It's THAT serious. Reach out to people. Move, live and help.

  23. the drug dealers know once they get this people on this crap they're on it for life you have to take all these people off the streets you have to take them into the desert you have to put him in confinement where it's impossible for the rest of their life did it get access to drugs then you have to have some sort of shop there where they work they can spend the rest of their lives working making license plates or whatever and never be free again this is how it's done along with this you've got to spray Columbia Mexico and the middle East with chemicals that makes the drugs toxic when they're used this is so simple yes you want to poison drug addicts because once they're poison the market dries up and the drug dealers have no money Seattle simple this is

  24. These people have forgotten that it's a choice. There is always a choice. Addicts choose to quit and change their lives all the time.

  25. I know a Steven ….. You know the middle-class clean cut did good in school kid . but somehow got stuck in the word of addiction that should have never been there in the first place that's what I think about Stephen and yes I had a friend just like him same story came from a beautiful family and just started using once a month once a week and then before you know it……

  26. They forgot to mention that Drs are largely to blame for this epidemic. Do you know how quickly they prescribe opiates to people? Not to mention they do it with little to no education on how addictive the drugs are and once addicted, you're screwed, that's it.

  27. Proverbs 23:20-21 Be not among winebibbers; among riotous eaters of flesh: 21 For the drunkard and the glutton shall come to poverty: and drowsiness shall clothe a man with rags.

    Proverbs 23: 30-33 They that tarry long at the wine; they that go seek mixed wine. 31 Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth its color in the cup, when it moveth itself atright. 32 At the last it bitten like a serpent, and sitngeth like an adder. 33 Thine eyes shall behold strange women, and thine hart shall utter perverse things.

  28. At least one billion people of color in the world are eager to immigrate to the United States, eager to have white skin and beautiful faces, but these are born Americans, but they do not cherish

  29. I don't understand these people. They take a drug to feel good but end up taking it because they feel worse now than they did before they started. That's just nuts.

  30. I have travelled from the uk to Pakistan on road via Turkey/Iran/Iraq/Afghanistan and so on.
    I have seen some upsetting to distressing things in my life
    But the baby in the supermarket had me in tears and I’m supposed to be a tough guy
    I’m 51 and have seen the monumental changes in society
    I never imagined a world like this

  31. visit this site to know about the real, original, actual islam and to know the purpose of life… to know that why we were created and where we are heading…. this is the site abukhadeejah.com

  32. The only NH I know is the Presidential Range, Maple syrup, and wonderous Fall colors. I don't want to see it any other way. I'm sorry this is happening in your beautiful State..

  33. This epidemic is affecting every family in the country. I just lost my brother due to this and I never in a million years would have ever have thought we of all ppl would have to bury my brother due to this drug. We were too late to save him. I pray that the ppl in this documentary can be saved b4 it’s too late for them and their families. Bc it’s just as hard on the families then it is of the addict. this drug is their murderer. Save them before it’s too late!

  34. I've been using heroin for 6 years and I'm so ready to quit but unless you have money for a detox there is no help out there. If I don't get into a detox soon I feel like I will die.

  35. One thing I do not understand is why do they dispatch 2 huge fire trucks for an overdose case. In London they've got paramedics on motorbikes. For an OD cases I think two guys in a smart car would be much more efficient.

  36. Its not pharmaceuticals problem. Its the people abusived it. Without pharmaceuticals making drug u wont have antibiotics or cancer or any virus treatment.

  37. This video makes me want to stop using heroin right now.
    I'm not going to lie, I'm smoking heroin right now. However, watching all these people with whom i can relate to motivates me to stop. It's my 5th year using heroin. I've tried to stop using it in the past but i always relapse. I've been off of heroin for only 26 days in the past 5 years and 2 months and I'm only 19 years old.
    I have depression and anxiety. I started using heroin to forget my worries and about 2 weeks in, i was addicted.
    In the pas 5 years, I've cost my parents $900,000. I've been trying to open up to someone for the past couple months but i can't.
    I hope I'm not boring you guys with my drug infested bs life.
    I'm sorry if i took y'all time. However, if anyone is reading this, thanks for your precious time. I really appreciate it. I really do!

  38. Shutting down the doctor run pill mills was exactly what the cartels wanted, heroin was nearly dead…at least with pills from a pharmacy you knew exactly how many you could take. Now the cartels to make even more money are just making brown fentanyl…

    At least it looks like New Hampshire police is following the laws in place to protect OD victims from arrest…which encourages people to call for help…this fentanyl is not responding to narcan…I’ve rescued 25+ people from OD as a Good Samaritan, I have to buy my own Narcan from walgreens

  39. Its terrible
    I had oxy, and MS contin
    Plus crack then figured out how to get Barbiturates
    It use maintenance now
    They give me tramadol, because the others don't keep me off barbs or crack

  40. America needs to change it's perception and attitudes. Making an addicts life worse will not make them clean. Making their life clean will make then stop using. Helping someone make their life better is cheaper than putting them down, incarcerating them, and them paying for clinics, medicaid and so on. Basically, you have to give a shit, not give shit!

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