October 10, 2013

Five overdose on unknown drug at Portland concert

The people, who became incapacitated and were taken to a hospital, won’t cooperate with police efforts to identify the substance.

By David Hench dhench@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

PORTLAND — Police say they don’t know what substance resulted in five people overdosing at a Portland concert and being taken to Maine Medical Center for treatment Tuesday night.

Police reported that the concertgoers became unconscious or incapacitated after taking a drug while at the Flux Pavilion concert at the State Theatre. However, the individuals would not cooperate with police efforts to identify the substance, said Lt. James Sweatt.

“Technically, they’re not committing a crime,” he said. “We’re treating them as a casualty.”

Responding officers suspected it was a mixture of an unknown drug and alcohol, he said. In such circumstances, alcohol can be very dangerous, he said.

The unknown substance was not an opiate like oxycodone because the people were not treated with Narcan, he said.

Hospital officials could not be reached to discuss the episode.

Police are working with the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency to follow up on the reports, in part to determine if there are any new substances or new drug potencies that might pose a danger to people unfamiliar with them.

David Hench can be contacted at 791-6327 or at:



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