ONIC Warns of Dangerous Drug Mixtures

in Ohio’s Illicit Drug Supply

(COLUMBUS, Ohio) – The Ohio Narcotics Intelligence Center (ONIC) released a public safety bulletin today alerting Ohioans to an increasing number of illicit drug samples found to contain mixtures of various unpredictable and potentially deadly drugs such as carfentanil, which is estimated to be 100 times more potent than fentanyl.

ONIC reported that forensic and drug testing labs across Ohio have recorded at least 17 drug samples containing mixtures of carfentanil and other drugs this year. These drug mixtures have been identified in several forms, including tablets, powder, and rocks.

Most of today’s illicit drug mixtures – with or without carfentanil – are extremely potent, which can make life-saving efforts more difficult.  From 2017 – 2021, 56% of drug poisoning deaths in Ohio involved a mixture of illicit drugs.

“Without sophisticated tests, it’s impossible to know exactly what you’re ingesting or how it will impact your body,” said Cynthia Peterman, ONIC Executive Director. “There is no quality control for illicit drugs, which is why no one should ever take a liquid, pill, or powder that was given to them by anyone other than a licensed health care provider.”

Common drugs often mixed in Ohio include:

  • Fentanyl and its analogues such as carfentanil
  • Stimulants such as methamphetamine and cocaine.
  • Veterinary sedatives such as xylazine and medetomidine, which are rarely found alone and are often mixed with fentanyl.

Launched by Governor Mike DeWine in 2019, ONIC is a specialized criminal intelligence unit that works to assist local law enforcement in conducting intelligence-driven drug trafficking investigations. ONIC’s criminal intelligence analysts and computer forensic specialists provide investigative, analytical, and digital forensic support to local law enforcement agencies and drug task forces throughout Ohio.

To report a drug tip to ONIC, please call 1-833-OHIO-NIC (644-6642). Information about how to access naloxone, the life-saving opioid overdose reversal medication, and fentanyl test strips is available by visiting naloxone.ohio.gov

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