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Addiction in Franklin County

Detox, stabilization treatment centers coming to Franklin County to help fight opioid addiction

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

After years fighting a growing opioid addiction problem with no local detox option but a jail cell or a bed on the hospital’s mental health floor reserved for the suicidal, the drug detoxification center promised by Gov. Deval Patrick took a step closer to reality this week. And more. The Department of Public Health is seeking a vendor to run not only a 32-bed detox center but a 32-bed next-step … 0

Franklin County, Athol work to monitor their own overdoses

Friday, July 18, 2014

How do you deal with a problem you can’t pin down until years after the fact? Those seeking to address the heroin problem in this area are not content to live with that situation, so a system is being put into place to provide numbers on overdoses years ahead of slow state reports. In June, for example, a 15-year-old girl overdosed on Tylenol; … 0

Alleged heroin trafficker arraigned in Superior Court

Friday, July 18, 2014

GREENFIELD — Heroin trafficking charges against a Westfield man have been brought before Franklin Superior Court. Antonio Rivera III, 28, also known as “Gizmo,” of 9 Leonard St. in Westfield, pleaded innocent to charges of trafficking in heroin and heroin possession Friday. He was ordered held on $10,000 cash bail. Rivera’s attorney, Robert … 0

Amid the cries for help, community efforts to solve the problem have only just begun

Sunday, May 4, 2014

GREENFIELD — Newborn babies in withdrawal scream. “I hear that scream in my sleep,” says Dr. Ruth Potee, a local family practitioner who is among those leading the charge against the scourge of addiction in Franklin County. Many … 0

Incidence of death and overdoses shoot up

Sunday, May 4, 2014

While Franklin County may have been late to experience the full brunt of the heroin problem, it’s here in force, and the latest spate of deaths and overdoses mirrors a trend reported throughout the Northeast. There is very … 0

What happens when heroin hijacks the brain?

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Heroin molecules fit into brain cells in such a way as to induce euphoria and suppress functions as basic and instinctive as breathing. The drug, a derivative of the opium poppy — and its natural and synthetic relatives … 0

Story of Ashley Sims’ death helped raise awareness of the problem

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Ashley Sims would have turned 24 on May 15; instead, she has been dead for two years, following a rapid fall into addiction. Attempts she made to save herself were thwarted by the lack of available help. Ashley … 0

Fugitive, cocaine, weapons found in highway stop

Friday, May 2, 2014

DEERFIELD — State police arrested an out-of-state man and woman on drug charges and other offenses after an Interstate 91 traffic stop. Kevin Rose, 27, of Brooklyn, N.Y., pleaded innocent to charges of trafficking in cocaine, being a fugitive from justice, conspiracy to violate drug laws, driving without … 0

Money in works for Opioid Task Force

Thursday, May 1, 2014

There’s money in the pipeline to give the regional Opioid Education and Awareness Task Force some staying power. The state House of Representatives added $100,000 into the state budget Wednesday night for the volunteer initiative begun last summer … 0

Vermont trio faces heroin charges

Thursday, May 1, 2014

BERNARDSTON — Three Vermonters face drug charges after state police allegedly found more than 350 bags of heroin in their vehicle during an interstate highway stop. Heather Megaro, 34, of Newark, Vt., pleaded innocent to charges of possession of heroin, being present where heroin is kept, and conspiracy … 0

3 saved in 3 days

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

DEERFIELD — Police say Narcan carried by friends and paramedics saved three people in three days from heroin overdoses in this small town this week, and there will soon be more of the overdose antidote in the hands … 0

Narcan saves two in two days in Deerfield

Monday, April 28, 2014

DEERFIELD — Narcan has saved two lives in two days in Deerfield, bringing two young women back from what police say were potentially fatal heroin overdoses. A 24-year-old Vermont woman collapsed from an overdose in the parking lot of Neighbors Convenience Store on Route 116 on Monday evening. … 1

Drug take-back bags almost a ton for the incinerator

Sunday, April 27, 2014

In Franklin County, 441 pounds of unwanted medications will be kept out of the hands of drug users, curious children, or the groundwater after Saturday’s drug take-back day. According to the Northwestern District Attorney’s Office, the one-day event … 0

Driver faces drug charges after traffic stop in Greenfield

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

GREENFIELD — A Hatfield man faces several drug charges after police say they found a cache of different drugs in his car during a traffic stop. George Gay, 22, of 17 Scotland Road, was arrested on charges of … 0

Bar association takes up heroin discussion

Friday, April 18, 2014

In its first legislative breakfast in years, the Franklin County Bar Association had planned to make a pitch for increased funding for the court-appointed lawyers. But the region’s addiction crisis, and the need for additional state funding and anti-addiction programs took center stage. The timing is right for … 0