BELFAST — There were as many as eight drug overdoses in the city over the weekend, resulting in two deaths, and police say the number could be the result of a new high-potency strain of narcotic being distributed in the area.

Justin Henderson, 30, of Burnham died of an apparent overdose Friday at Dockside Family Restaurant in Belfast where he had been working, according to police. Waldo County Sheriff Jeffrey Trafton said Henderson was serving the end of a sentence at Maine Coastal Regional Re-entry Center at the time of his death.

Belfast Police responded and administered Narcan but were unable to revive Henderson. A second re-entry center resident at the restaurant is believed to have also to have taken narcotics and was treated at Waldo County General Hospital. Trafton said the second man was scheduled to be released July 24, but had his probation revoked and now faces new drug-related charges.

Henderson was convicted earlier this year on domestic violence assault and theft charges. Trafton declined to say whether he had been receiving drug counseling or treatment prior to his death, citing an open investigation by Maine State Police.

State Police did not immediately return a call seeking comment on the investigation.

On Saturday, Belfast Police responded to Waldo County General Hospital for a suspected drug overdose death. The man was believed to have been dropped off at the hospital.

Trafton said the man lived in Waldo County and was about 50 years old. He declined to release his name or hometown because the case is being investigated by state police alongside Henderson’s, he said.

The hospital reported an additional five overdoses over the weekend, according to a July 24 news release from the sheriff’s office.

On the same night, a sheriff’s deputy responded to an overdose call at a residence and administered Narcan, an emergency opioid-reversing medicine, to a man who survived, Trafton said.

Police Chief Mike McFadden said neither of the deaths have been confirmed as overdoses but added, “We have every reason to believe that there may be a higher potency strain of narcotic in our area because of the experience that we’ve had.”

Friday’s overdose death of a re-entry center resident was the first since the facility opened in 2010, Trafton said. He noted that because the death didn’t occur at the center itself, it is being investigated as a regular civilian overdose, though one of particular note, he said, because Henderson was young and his death involved an opioid.

Trafton said he was “flabbergasted” by the news, having recently worked alongside Henderson at a USDA food boxes program for area seniors in Belfast. Trafton recalled Henderson saying he was looking forward to seeing his children.

“He seemed to be doing well,” Trafton said. “He was positive and working hard.

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