Ohio coroners warn of carfentanil surge

Ohio coroners warn of carfentanil surge


Coroners in two of Ohio’s largest counties have issued drug abuse warnings following the reappearance of an opioid so powerful it’s sometimes used to sedate elephants.

Dr. Anahi Ortiz, coroner in Franklin County, said that the county which calls Columbus home had at least three carfentanil-related overdose deaths in January.

Ortiz said the county saw six carfentanil-related deaths in all of 2018, with the last in September.

Ortiz says the drug is “extremely potent” and almost impossible to detect by sight because it’s often mixed with other drugs.

Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner Dr. Thomas Gilson issued a similar warning Thursday based on an increase in carfentanil seizures in the Cleveland area this year.

Court rejects delay in gerrymandering trial


A three-judge panel in Cincinnati has denied a request by Ohio to delay a federal lawsuit that seeks the redrawing of congressional district lines ahead of the 2020 election.

Friday’s ruling says the re are time concerns in deciding a lawsuit filed last May by the Ohio League of Women Voters and others because changes to the map must be completed this September.

The trial is scheduled to begin before the panel of U.S. District Court judges March 4.

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit argue the current map violates voters’ constitutional rights and has resulted in 12 predictably Republican districts and only four predictably Democratic districts in Ohio.

Ohio sought to delay the trial until after the U.S. Supreme Court decides gerrymandering cases from Maryland and North Carolina.

Associated Press

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