SACRAMENTO (CBS13) —The death of actor Philip Seymour Hoffman is a stark reminder of the growing trend of heroin use across the nation.

A CBS13 investigation uncovered the return and rise of heroin use in the Sacramento area.

A former drug dealer and heroin addict told CBS13 the drug once associated with the inner city is now the drug of choice for kids, and it’s showing up in upscale neighborhoods.

“Sad to say, but I’ve sold heroin and needles to also 13-, 14-year-olds, junior-high, high-school kids, i mean it’s that bad,” he said.

The heroin death toll is the highest it’s been in New York’s Long Island. One reason for the surge in overdoses is a deadly mixture of heroin and the prescription drug fentanyl that’s claimed 22 lives in just two weeks.

While drug experts like Barbara Thompson with the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence say the mix hasn’t made its way to Sacramento, they warn the epidemic is nowhere near its peak.

“It’s not going to go away,” she said.

The group says after Hoffman’s death, they’ve seen an increase in calls into their hotline.

The Sacramento Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 916-922-5122.

Hooked On Heroin: Drug’s Use Rises With Oxycontin Changes (May 2013 investigation)


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