Fentanyl Impact In Bakersfield

Jaysen Ford, Editor In Chief

In past cases, Bakersfield has had a history of surmounting fatal fentanyl cases. A total of 104 fentanyl related deaths were reported during the year of 2021 alone. Recently cases have resurfaced with people found in possession of or overdosing on the drug. 

In a couple cases, two young children, a 1 year old and 9 month old, were found overdosed on fentanyl in the same manner within the span of a week, and had to be rushed to the hospital. According to KGET news, on January 21st, police responders in east Bakersfield found the 9 month old baby unresponsive and not breathing. In the other case earlier in January, a 1 year old boy was also found unresponsive after officers were called out to a residence near Gosford. and The parents of these children have since been arrested for child cruelty and drug possession. In regards to the case Ridgeview student Sahib Singh believes that the parents should be held adequately accountable for child neglect, “I think if you have a child, then you’ve given yourself a lot of responsibility for this child, so if you neglect them it’s very serious so there should be a lot of penalty.”

The impact of fentanyl on the Bakersfield community has caused tragedy in several families because of overdose. In a Bakersfield Californian article from earlier this year in January, Theresa Lake, a mother who lost her 31 year old son to an overdose on drugs laced with fentanyl said, “You don’t know what’s in those drugs when you buy them off the street.”

  Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that has been known to be highly dangerous as it is 80-100 times more powerful than morphine and just two milligrams (equivalent to about Five grains of salt) can lead to death. According to the DEA, when people buy fentanyl or drugs that may have fentanyl in them it is very possible that they will have no way of knowing whether there’s a lethal dose in it or not.