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Officials hold back-to-school town hall on talking to kids about fentanyl

Posted at 8:44 AM, Aug 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-17 15:43:25-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — Congressman Doug Lamborn held a back-to-school town hall on how to talk to kids about fentanyl.

There has been a huge increase in overdoses involving fentanyl recently, so parents need to have those important conversations with their kids.

Several law enforcement personnel were in attendance as well as the District Attorney and Coroner to show parents how to responsibly talk to kids about fentanyl.

During the press conference, Dr. Leon Kelly said there have been 60 fentanyl deaths in El Paso County this year and are on track to have 120 fentanyl deaths by the end of the year.

The Monument Police Department's Chief of Police, Sean Hemingway, said the key factor to look out for in your children is a change of friends.

Officials also expressed the importance of not touching any suspicious pills you may find in your child's room.

The Manitou Springs Police Department's Chief of Police, Bill Otto, verified that every cop carries Narcan and that no prescription is needed to pick it up from pharmacies.

Stop the Clock Colorado is a website that helps you locate a pharmacy that sells Narcan.

If you are experiencing problems with alcohol and/or drugs, reach out to the Lifeline Helpline by calling 1-800-923-4357 or texting TEEN2TEEN to 839863.

Watch the full town hall below:


Fentanyl is getting so much attention because it is so dangerous and everyone is at risk.

“Just a very tiny amount of fentanyl can be lethal,” said Dr. Stein Bronsky with Centura Emergency Medicine.

Fentanyl has a legitimate purpose in hospitals but on the streets, doctors call it deadly.

“People really do need to understand just how prevalent this problem is and that it’s out there surrounding us all over, and a lot of people are not aware of it,” said Bronsky.

A Colorado Springs man recently pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute fentanyl and para-fluorofentanyl which resulted in the death of a 16-year-old boy in Colorado Springs.

According to the plea agreement, the defendant and two co-defendants agreed to distribute pills that contained fentanyl and para-fluorofentanyl to a juvenile and his friends between Dec. 2021 and Jan. 20, 2022.

The 16-year-old's death on Jan. 31 resulted from the use of fentanyl and para-fluorofentanyl contained within the pills.

In another instance, an affidavit that was released in July provided details on the death of a 4-year-old girl from a suspected fentanyl overdose and the arrest of her mother for child abuse resulting in death.

The investigating officer states the daughter, Acelynn Staton-Contreras, likely found pills inside a container stored on a bathroom sill.

According to the affidavit, Emma Staton told the officer she awoke Tuesday night to find her daughter in distress, gasping for air, and that she had vomited. After noticing a container with pills had been moved from the window sill to the toilet seat, the mother administered one dose of Narcan in an attempt to counteract the effects of fentanyl.

She first called 911 from her iPad around 9 p.m. Tuesday night but hung up instead of asking for help. Deputies were still sent to the home where Staton told them nothing was wrong and the call was an accident.

About an hour later after deputies left, Staton left the home with Acelynn in distress and her boyfriend driving the car. 911 was called one more time as the daughter resumed gasping for air and "turned blue", according to the affidavit.

The officer notes the mother told the call taker what had happened to her daughter. Police and medics tried to save the girl's life outside the Love's Truck Stop off I-25 in Fountain, but were unsuccessful.

Fountain Police Chief Christopher Herberer told News5 the death was "fentanyl-related."

Officers later searched the home for evidence and combined with the search of the Hello Kitty bag, officers recovered 45 fentanyl pills, 3.2 grams of methamphetamine, and several pipes.

An El Paso County judge has ordered Emma Staton held on $500,000 bond on charges of child abuse resulting in death, unlawful possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia. She was originally being held on a $50,000 bond.

The affidavit from Fountain Police does not include the name of Staton's boyfriend. There is no information from investigators on charges being filed against additional people in this case.


In March, News5 Investigates polled several area school districts to find out how many of them are equipped to administer Narcan, also known as Naloxone.

Harrison District 2:
"We currently have Narcan through our 3 SRO’s, and we are exploring the same program as D11," spokesperson Christine O'Brien said.

News 5 did a recent report on District 11 carrying Narcan. You can view that report here.

Widefield District 3: 
"We do not currently equip schools with Narcan," spokesperson Samantha Briggs said.

Academy District 20:
"Currently we do not have Narcan in schools," spokesperson Allison Cortez said. "However, our CSPD and EPSO SROs (school resource officers) assigned to our high schools all carry Narcan Spray with them. It is part of their medical training. Although we do not currently have a program in place that puts Narcan in our schools, it is something we are investigating. Our district nurses have been in touch with the D49 and D11 lead nurses to learn about their programs. Also, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has a Narcan program for all schools, and we going through that."

District 49:
"Currently, the school resource officers (SRO) who work in partnership with D49 schools (3 EPSO deputies/2 CSPD) have access to Narcan and are trained to administer," spokesperson David Nancarrow said.

Lewis Palmer 38:
"D38 has a security team, and our security team has been trained to utilize and provide Narcan/Naloxone in schools across our district," spokesperson Mark Belcher said.

Pueblo District 60:
"All of our schools are equipped with Narcan," spokesperson Dalton Sprouse said.

Pueblo District 70:
District 70 Superintendent Ed Smith responded to KOAA's email seeking information on whether the district carries Narcan.

"We do not have Narcan on school campus," Smith said via email.

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