COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (KDVR) — The district attorney for Adams and Broomfield counties said the suspected cause of death for five people found dead in an apartment on Sunday afternoon was illegal drugs laced with fentanyl.
Brian Mason, the DA for the 17th Judicial District, said based on the scene, fentanyl-laced cocaine is suspected to have killed five adults who were found around 3:45 p.m. at the North Range Crossings Apartments.
“I am fearful every single day, that somebody else in my community will be taking a drug and inadvertently die from fentanyl and that’s what happened last night,” Mason said. “Fentanyl is not just a crisis for drug users, it is a crisis for law enforcement, it is a crisis for everyone.”
The DA said he is intent to find the source of the deadly drugs so no one else dies but said that it is a longshot.
“We are finding fentanyl in cocaine, in heroin, in meth, in some circumstances even in marijuana, and people are taking it without realizing it,” Mason said.
“The scene last night was a nightmare. It looked like a mass homicide scene inside this apartment. These five adults literally dropped where they took the drugs. This drug is frightening, it is dangerous.”
On Monday afternoon, the Commerce City Police Department released descriptions and ages of the victims:
- Hispanic male, 24
- White female, 28
- White female, 32
- White female, 29
- Hispanic male, 32
A 4-month-old baby was found in the apartment, taken to the hospital, checked out and released with no known issues. The DA told FOX31 that the baby’s mother is one of the people who died.
A 29-year-old Hispanic woman was also found in the apartment and transported to the hospital where she remains, CCPD said.
Chief Clint Nichols with the CCPD said that if drugs were the cause of death, “they were really bad no one was able to get to a phone and call 911— it happened quickly.”
A spokesperson for Gov. Jared Polis’ office provided FOX31 with this statement:
Fentanyl is devastating our communities. Governor Polis believes the General Assembly needs to act on a comprehensive approach to address the dangers of fentanyl including increased criminal penalties. While there is no guarantee that increased criminal penalties would have prevented this tragedy, we clearly need real consequences and harsher sentences for those involved with dealing or possessing enough fentanyl to kill people. This drug is unlike any our country has seen before, people are taking it without even realizing they are doing so which is why we urgently need comprehensive solutions that include harsher penalties and also addresses the unique nature of this crisis and to do more to bring awareness to the problem.
The investigation is being conducted by CCPD, the North Metro Drug Enforcement Task Force and the DA’s office.