Re­port: Fa­tal over­doses con­tinue to rise in county

Fen­tanyl be­com­ing a big­ger is­sue

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - IS­SUE By JA­COB OWENS

jowens@ce­cil­whig.com

— Ce­cil County’s num­ber of fa­tal drug and al­co­hol over­doses reached new highs in 2015, in­clud­ing the grow­ing num­ber from a newly emerg­ing threat, ac­cord­ing to a state re­port is­sued Thurs­day.

The county saw 32 fa­tal over­doses last year, an in­crease of three deaths, or 10 per­cent, over the pre­vi­ous year, ac­cord­ing to the Mary­land Depart­ment of Health and Men­tal Hy­giene re­port.

Of those deaths, 16 were

ELK­TON

heroin-re­lated, an in­crease of one death, or 6 per­cent, over the pre­vi­ous year. The 16 heroin-re­lated deaths is the high­est recorded Ce­cil County to­tal by DHMH since it started track­ing over­dose sta­tis­tics in 2007. Since 2010, the num­ber of heroin deaths statewide has more than tripled, with 748 re­ported last year.

While Ce­cil County’s sta­tis­tics rose, its in­creases were not as dra­matic as other ar­eas of the state. Har­ford County saw an in­crease of 16 per­cent in to­tal over­dose deaths, while both Bal­ti­more County and City rose 29 per­cent. Ce­cil County was also un­der the

the 1400 block of Colora Road. The driver, Jeremy Ben­jamin Ellingsworth, 36, was trav­el­ing south­bound in his 2002 Honda Odyssey when he crossed into the north­bound lane and came back into the

right lane, said Lt. Mike Holmes, CCSO spokesper­son.

Ellingsworth was ejected from the car af­ter his ve­hi­cle drove down into a road­side ditch and rolled over, Holmes re­ported.

“It’s still be­ing in­ves­ti­gated,” Holmes said of the ac­ci­dent.

Then Sun­day morn­ing, of­fi­cials with the Mary-

land State Po­lice North East Bar­rack re­ported a crash in Ch­e­sa­peake City that left one dead.

The ac­ci­dent oc­curred at 1: 33 a. m. on Sun­day morn­ing, ac­cord­ing to a re­lease from the bar­rack.

An­drew Charles Rively, 29, of Odessa, Del., was driv­ing a 2007 Hyundai Tuc­son, trav­el­ing east­bound on Bethel Road, be-

fore Old Tele­graph Road, when, for un­known rea­sons, he crossed into the west­bound lane, ac­cord­ing to po­lice of­fi­cials. Rively went off the road and hit a tree, and the ve­hi­cle over­turned, ac­cord­ing to po­lice of­fi­cials.

Rively was pro­nounced dead at the scene, ac­cord­ing to the re­lease.

The pas­sen­gers of the

car, Delaware res­i­dents Christo­pher M. Pitcher, 29, and Alexis Casey O’Con­nell, 23, were in­jured and taken to Christina Hos­pi­tal via ambulance, ac­cord­ing po­lice of­fi­cials.

Bethel Road at Old Tele­graph Road was closed for three hours for po­lice to in­ves­ti­gate, ac­cord­ing to the re­lease. The in­ves­ti­ga­tion is still on­go­ing.

CE­CIL WHIG FILE PHOTO

The num­ber of fa­tal over­doses grew last year to a new record high, but trained in­di­vid­u­als, such as law en­force­ment of­fi­cers, con­tinue to save dozens each year as well.

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