Students in LaSalle are "scrambling" to find drugs since the arrest of an alleged dealer, say police, who are warning parents to guard against theft and to be on the lookout for signs of withdrawal.
"A lot of students are scrambling to get other sources/suppliers for drugs," said LaSalle Police in a Facebook post. "Indications are that some are turning to other drugs, while some are struggling with withdrawal symptoms."
The post was billed as a "Safety Alert" and police said they are "sharing the information with everyone to reduce risk and help parents devise some harm reduction plans."
Earlier this month, LaSalle police arrested and charged a 20-year-old Amherstburg woman with possession of Fentanyl for the purpose of trafficking. Officers seized 130 capsules of Fentanyl with an approximate street value of $9,100.
Constable Harbinder Gill said police cannot verify if this particular dealer was a major source for people in the town, but "that's the information we're getting from the community," he told CBC News.
"It seems like this person was one of the main suppliers — not the only supplier, mind you — but one of the main suppliers," Gill said. "Since she got arrested and held in custody, kids were looking for other sources."
Police urged LaSalle residents to lock their car doors and homes and garages to prevent drug-fuelled theft and to contact police if they suspect "illegal drug activity" in their neighbourhood.
They also urged parents to be mindful of signs and symptoms of opioid misuse, including "pinpoint eyes, slurred speech" and sudden mood changes that go beyond typical teenage mood swings.
Parents were also asked to be on the lookout for signs of withdrawal, which police said included excessive sweating, an inability to sleep, muscle aches, restlessness and anxiety.