Police arrested a man outside an addiction center in Massachusetts who allegedly sold fentanyl to users in the parking lot before they sought treatment.
Authorities observed a drug deal at roughly 5 a.m. Friday in the parking lot of a supermarket across the street from the the Cape Cod Treatment Center in Yarmouth, Mass., where patients suffering from opioid addiction can undergo methadone treatment. Police spoke with the buyer, who confessed to regularly buying and using heroin and fentanyl in the parking lot before seeking treatment in the addiction center, reports The Boston Globe.
Officers subsequently arrested 64-year-old Richard Cincotta outside the Cape Cod Treatment Center on charges of fentanyl possession with intent to distribute and conspiracy.
“Police … encountered the buyer in the Stop and Shop parking lot across the street as he was in the process of shooting up the drug,” said a statement from the Yarmouth Police Department, according to Martha’s Vineyard Patch. “The man admitted to what had just occurred and advised the Police Officers that he buys the drugs in the Cape Cod Treatment Center parking lot every other morning – uses the drugs – then returns to Treatment Center to obtain his daily methadone.”
Cincotta was in possession of multiple packs of fentanyl when police arrested him, and officers found additional drugs and $2,000 in cash during a search of his apartment. He has a previous conviction for selling fentanyl.
Fentanyl, a synthetic painkiller roughly 50 to 100 times more powerful than morphine, overtook heroin as the deadliest substance in the U.S. in 2016, claiming 19,413 lives, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The substance is fueling more overdose deaths as drug dealers increasingly cut the substance into heroin and cocaine supplies to maximize profits.
Nationally, drug overdoses are now the leading cause of accidental death for Americans under age 50, killing more than 64,000 people in 2016.
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