The Free Press

NORTH MANKATO — The death of a 25-year-old man in North Mankato is the fourth suspected fatal overdose in the Mankato area this month.

First responders were called to an apartment in the 400 block of Allan Avenue at 10:40 p.m. Monday on a possible overdose, according to a news release from the North Mankato Police Department.

The man, who is not being identified pending notification of his family, was pronounced dead at the scene. His body was taken to the Ramsey County Medical Examiner’s Office to determine cause of death.

North Mankato police and the Minnesota River Valley Drug Task Force are investigating.

It’s the fourth death investigation opened by the drug task force since Sept. 5, according to a press release from Cmdr. Jeff Wersal. The victims were between the ages of 18 and 24.

Counterfeit prescription pills containing fentanyl are suspected in two of the deaths.

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid of which one extremely small dose can be fatal.

Along with finding it in counterfeit pills, Wersal said agents are now seeing fentanyl in all of the heroin they seize.

“The public needs to be aware that there are no safe opioids that are not prescribed by a doctor,” Wersal said in a statement. “People need to pay attention to their loved ones and intervene if opioid abuse is suspected before they become victims of an overdose death.”

There also have been numerous non-fatal overdoses in the region this month, according to Wersal.

“Although the substance that causes the non-fatal overdoses is not often identified, drug task force agents have reason to believe that an opioid is involved.”

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