Nfld. & Labrador

RCMP say sorry for wrong warning about drug-laced gum

A day after telling the public bubble gum had been laced with fentanyl, police say they regret the error.

Police now say that only gum package tested positive for narcotics, not gum itself

Bay Roberts RCMP released this photo, which they say is a likeness of the package that tested positive for traces of narcotics. (Provided by Bay Roberts RCMP)

A day after warning the public about fentanyl-laced bubble gum, police say they were wrong, and that only the container, likely used to conceal illegal narcotics, tested positive — not the gum itself.

The information provided in yesterday's news release, and to media in interviews, was incorrect, Bay Roberts RCMP said in a release Tuesday.

On Monday, police said in a release that testing indicated the presence of fentanyl, a potent drug that can cause overdose or death in even small quantities, in bubble gum found near a man who was treated with Naloxone nasal spray after a reported overdose.

When asked if the presence of the opioid was found on the gum, the gum's packaging, or both, RCMP Cpl. Matthew Christie told CBC News that preliminary drug testing found trace amount of narcotics on both.

Christie said Monday the gum was purchased outside Newfoundland and Labrador and sent to Bay Roberts by mail, but also requested that parents be "cognizant of what their children have."

Police still say there is no risk of contamination in gum purchased locally.

"This incident is related to suspected criminal activity and there are no linkages to gum purchased in retail establishments," they said in today's release.

"The RCMP regrets this error and apologizes for any confusion."

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