MONTICELLO, Ky. — Wayne County Sheriff Tim Catron says a suspicious find during a traffic stop Thursday has led to approximately 400 illegal narcotic Xanax bars (pills) being sent to the KSP Laboratory for analysis and to also obtain an accurate count.

Deputy Derek Dennis conducted a traffic stop on South Main in Monticello after recognizing the driver, knowing he had an active arrest warrant.

A search of the vehicle resulted in approximately 400 Xanax bars with the marking Xanax-2. Law enforcement suspected the bars might of contained the drug 'fentanyl" and an accurate count was not obtained.

Sheriff Catron says, "These bars have been showing up in Wayne County and appear to have been made illegally by someone using a pill press and not being manufactured by a legal pharmaceutical company." Catron further stated, "This type of bar is well known to contain the drug fentanyl."

If you are unfamiliar with fentanyl, it's a legal prescription drug used for pain control during surgery and for chronic or breakthrough cancer pain. Fentanyl is also being manufactured illegally and sold for its euphoric effects.

Street drugs ike heroin, cocaine and meth are being laced with this opioid, as are counterfeit drugs made to look like the real ones, like Vicodin or Xanax. It’s an extremely potent and rapidly fatal substitute for heroin.

Fentanyl works in the brain to block pain and is in the same class of drugs as morphine or hydrocodone but is about fifty to 100 times more potent. Just two to 3 milligrams of this drug can kill a person.

It's most dangerous side effect is respiratory depression, which can quickly lead to coma and death. Users may not realize the street drug they are buying from a dealer contains this potentially lethal compound.

Deputy Dennis charged and arrested Tayshaun Stamper of Monticello for trafficking in a controlled substance-3rd degree (greater than or equal to 120 drugs unspecified). Stamper was also arrested on a Wayne County District Court Warrant for failure to appear for arraignment on charges of operating on a suspended or revoked operator’s license and a traffic violation. He was lodged in the Pulaski County Detention Center.

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