L.A. Times Says OxyContin Created Everett’s Heroin Epidemic

July 11, 2016



Heroin has reportedly replaced OxyContin as the drug of choice in Everett.

“Illicit OxyContin devastated the entire Everett region. At the height of the drug’s popularity, it was a factor in more than half of the crimes in Snohomish County. Abuse of the drug touched off an epidemic of painkiller and heroin addiction, which continues to this day.”

That quote from Sunday’s L.A. Times comes from a story titled,

How black-market OxyContin spurred a town’s descent into crime, addiction and heartbreak

A MyEverettNews.com reader shared the story with us and we’re passing it along to you for your consideration.

In the story, writers Harriet Ryan, Scott Glover and Lisa Giron from the L.A. Times describe how mass quantities of black-market OxyContin flooded Everett’s streets in the time period from 2008 – 2010. Then the formula for making the drug changed which created a huge demand for heroin which officials here now call an epidemic.

In February of this year DEA agents seized large quantities of heroin and meth from the operator of several halfway houses in Everett. In March of this year Everett Police announced arrests of large heroin dealers supplying smaller dealers in the area of the Smith Street bridge.

You can read the L.A. Times story here.


About myeverettnews

My Everett News is a hyperlocal news website featuring breaking news and events in Everett, WA. We also cover City of Everett information and items of interest to those who live and work in Everett. It's written by Leland Dart a former Snohomish County based radio reporter born and raised in Everett.

View all posts by myeverettnews

12 Responses to “L.A. Times Says OxyContin Created Everett’s Heroin Epidemic”

  1. twincedars Says:

    Maybe my old joke is proving true: Everett…a great place to be FROM !

  2. anon Says:

    I blame the inaction of city and lack of support programs. Mix this with enablers, and citizens that don’t stand their ground.

    Our city is so chitty, even LA has noticed.

  3. Donkey Hotay Says:

    Nice work, Everett Herald. You really nailed that scoop in your backyard.

  4. Judy Says:

    I am totally appalled at some of these responses..”let them kill themselves off” WTF kind of idiotic solution is that? You obviously have never dealt with addiction or had any family die from this. Maybe you might change your ignorant response to this epidemic. BTW this affects all residents of most cities in the greater NW. And if you think it doesn’t pull your head out of your you know what.

    • Donkey Hotay Says:

      I’m not convinced Jack’s idea is that callous or far-fetched. Addicts don’t seem to want to recover until they’ve faced an extremity. If they reached that extremity sooner, i.e. without the failed trips to methadone clinics or low barrier housing or embedded social workers, wouldn’t that be a more rational course to take?

    • Mike N Says:

      What kind of solution is it? The only prudent, practical and viable one. And yes, I do have a brother who is addicted; has been for 30 years. He has had innumerable chances to straighten out, and has either blown or passed on every one. And burnt too many bridges to count. So yeah, I’d put him at the front of the line.
      It isn’t like these people don’t know that they are slowly killing themselves. So why not speed up the process for the sake of the rest of us who choose to live productive lives? They should lock them in a room full of confiscated drugs and let them have at it. One last ultimate high to send them off. And we will all be the better for it.

  5. AnonEmouse Says:

    “Black market” oxycontin? How about Oxycontin legally prescribed by money hungry doctors and pushed by glorified drug dealers?

  6. Bourne Says:

    More taxpayer funded programs on the way? Yay!

    • Jack kass Says:

      So, what is your solution? The war on drugs has failed. I’m in the boat of, “let them kill themselves off.”

      • AnonEmouse Says:

        Well we certainly can’t keep enabling them, as clearly we’ve only helped them make their own addictions stronger so far by trying to “help” them. Then again, there is a BOATLOAD of money to be made by law enforcement and politicians from the war on drugs. So why would they truly want to end it after all?

  7. AnonEmouse Says:

    Well gee, you don’t say? This comes only after YEARS of Mr Stephanson denying knowledge of any drug problems in Everett. Now it’s time to take some REAL action, Mr. Mayor. We can’t enable this behavior any longer. Your “low barrier housing” is only going to do just that, enable drug use and crime.

  8. Zach Says:

    LA Times everybody! We’re famous! Hooray!