Was Weed Laced With Fentanyl Sold in the Hudson Valley?
Police provided an update following reports potentially deadly marijuana laced with fentanyl was sold in the Hudson Valley.
On April 8, police in Sullivan County noticed a car allegedly parked the wrong way in the parking lot at the Monticello Walmart. The driver, Daquan Hamilton, was found with seven grams of marijuana on him and he told police his dealer warned him the weed was very potent, officials say.
Based on statements made by Hamilton, Sullivan County deputies tested the marijuana for the presence of fentanyl using a NARK II field test kit. The field test of two separate packages that were seized indicated the marijuana was laced with fentanyl, police say.
The Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office then forwarded the evidence to the New York State Police Crime Laboratory in Newburgh for a confirmatory test.
The test results by New York State Police indicated that the marijuana was not laced with fentanyl, the Sullivan County Sheriff's Office announced in a press release on Friday.
“After consulting with experts, it appears the chemicals in the NARK II field test kit react with organic plant matter in such a way that it gives a false positive for fentanyl”, Sullivan Count Undersheriff Eric Chaboty said. “The Sheriff’s Office has notified the District Attorney of the test results so that the charges against the defendant can be adjusted accordingly”.
The initial results indicated by the field test were accepted as valid by investigators since “additives” such as angel dust (PCP), cocaine and LSD have appeared in marijuana over the years, exposing users to dangerous side effects, police say.
"We continue to hear rumors on the street about marijuana being laced with fentanyl”, Chaboty said. "We really hope it is not true”.