EUNICE, La. (KLFY) –Eunice Police Chief Randy Fontenot has issued a stern warning to dealers who sell drugs that end up killing people.

“In the case where the buyer dies then we will charge the supplier with murder,” Fontenot said.

This message follows the arrest of Isaiah Brett Carrier, 19 an accused fentanyl dealer charged with second degree murder in connection to the overdose death of a teen on Sept. 12.

The boy, 17 was found unresponsive in his bed.

A preliminary toxicology reports indicated fentanyl was present in his system, Fontenot said.

He says his department has seen an increase in the use of fentanyl within the past couple of years.

“In the last two or three years we have seen a huge increase in fentnayl. It has become more popular than crack used to be.”

He says people need to be aware of this dangerous drug that has taken over the streets.

“People not that familiar with it are getting it or if they are familiar with that drug and it’s laced with that very little amount of fentanyl and they are OD ing on it.”

Chief Fontenot says fentanyl deaths are becoming all too common and he hopes that charging alleged drug dealers with murder, that perhaps they will get the message.

According to the Louisiana Opioid Data and Surveillance System (LODSS), in 2020 there were 2,121 drug-involved deaths in the state of Louisiana, a sharp increase from 1,485 in 2019.

Of those deaths, 982 were opioid related, an increase from 588 the previous year.

From LODSS, there were 132 drug-involved deaths reported in Region 7 for 2020, an increase from 105 in 2019.

On Friday, the Louisiana Department of Health will help foster open and honest conversations with faith leaders at an opioids awareness breakfast.

Held during National Recovery Month, which is observed every September, the event begins at 8 a.m. Friday, September 30 at Independence Stadium Skybox in Shreveport. 

Mayor Adrian Perkins will provide the welcome at the Opioid and Substance Use Awareness Breakfast.

The breakfast is free and open to all faith leaders who have a part in the ministry of the church.