CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS) — The emergence of a new and dangerous drug has entered the states, where first reported cases were discovered in Tennessee, and in the District of Columbia, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Nitazenes, a new drug with a supposed strength 10 times stronger than Fentanyl, has already been the key factor in the involvement in fatal overdoses in neighboring states.

Attorney General Patrick Morrisey shared his concerns, given that West Virginia is on the frontlines of this opioid pandemic, he wants to make sure that this issue is addressed immediately.     

“This is a serious concern, so, I just wrote a letter to the DEA administrator this week, and we’ve asked about how prevalent of these fatal overdose deaths are from Nitazenes across the country, and we’re trying to learn a lot more from the DEA, where the products are coming from,” said Attorney General Morrisey.  

The Attorney General also shared concerns about the different routes where these illicit drugs can make their way into West Virginia.

“There are a lot of different routes where a lot of the illicit drugs make their way into West Virginia. We know a lot of drugs flow up on 77, but then in other parts of the state, drugs come in through different pathways, so were worried that once it starts to come in here in mass, that we could really see a further increase of deaths, and that’s a deep concern,” Attorney General Morrisey added.

The Attorney General said he is doing his best to get on top of this issue and is also working with the DEA to assess this new drug threat.