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Sep 22, 2015 6:47 PM

Seacoast officials investigating 3 suspected overdose deaths


PORTSMOUTH - Officials are investigating three suspected overdose deaths and heroin is the likely cause.

"I mean obviously in 16 years as a police officer I think I'm saying what everyone else is saying, I've never seen anything like it," said Portsmouth Police Sgt. Dave Keaveny.

Officials in Portsmouth are responding to overdose calls once a week, Keaveny said.

A 27-year-old man was found dead Sunday morning, and while toxicology reports are pending, all signs point to a heroin overdose.

Rye police say two deaths are being investigated as overdoses, a 46-year-old man was found dead Friday and a 23-year-old man died at Portsmouth Regional Hospital Saturday.

Keaveny says his department is looking at new options for dealing with the state's opioid crisis. Their plan is to target neighborhoods where overdoses are common, in the hopes of connecting with users and making them feel comfortable enough to reach out for help.

New Hampshire ranks 2nd to last in the nation for treatment. The Portsmouth Police Department doesn't have a staff member that can connect users with treatment facilities, but Keaveny says he wants users and family members to know police are there to help.

He encourages those waiting to get into a treatment facility to attend a Narcotics Anonymous or Alcoholics Anonymous Meeting, to speak with people who are dealing with similar issues.

The Portsmouth Police Department and a local filmmaker will be releasing a PSA on the opioid addiction crisis at the end of the week.


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