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As overdose deaths increase, new plan in the works to give cash to addicts

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BATON ROUGE- As Baton Rouge continues to see a record number of overdose deaths across our community, there's a unique plan that will be announced targeting the dealers selling the poison on the streets.

"Being a person in recovery, I know that when people are using, they buy from the same drug dealer and everyone knows who the drug dealer is," Peer Support Specialist Tonja Myles said.

Myles said those in the recovery community are working together in hopes of putting a stop to it. Money will be allocated to Crimestoppers to give to drug addicts who give enough information that leads to their drug dealer's arrest. Those who participate can make between a few hundred dollars to about $1,000.

"We want people to call in that drug dealer who is selling people poison and killing people," Myles said.

The numbers are quite concerning. Last year, Baton Rouge broke its third consecutive record for deadly overdoses. There were 312 deaths. Nearly 93-percent of those were from some type of opioid and close to 90-percent are directly related to Fentanyl.

This year is off to a horrible start. There have been 45 suspected overdose deaths for the month of January, up more than 55-percent from last year's record.

The program will formally launch next week in partnership with Crimestoppers and those in the recovery community.

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