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DEA, FBI fighting opioid epidemic with new documentary

Posted at 6:02 AM, Sep 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-12 09:23:49-04

The Drug Enforcement Administration and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are taking a unique approach to fighting the opioid epidemic. 

According to the DEA, three people in Arizona are killed everyday due to an opiate overdose, add in the rest of the country that number rises to 120 per day. 

A problem so bad The Arizona Department of Health Services has been keeping a real-time count of the problem, recording almost 1,700 deaths just in Arizona since June 2017. 

The DEA and the FBI have turned to filmmaking to help solve the problem, with the documentary "Chasing the Dragon: The Life of an Opiate Addict." The film is dedicated to educating students and young adults about the dangers of addictions and ultimately working to save more lives. 

Douglas Coleman, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Phoenix Field Division, has been in law enforcement for 30 years and says this is the worst epidemic he's ever seen as far as a body count. 

"I lived through the crack days, I lived through the meth, through everything and this particular epidemic it's the worst I've ever seen." 

Coleman and his team will be on hand Wednesday night at the South Mountain Community Library, to answer questions and show the film to the public. Doors open at 5:45 p.m. and the event is free. 

The South Mountain Community Library is located at 7050 S. 24th Street (24th Street/Baseline Road) in Phoenix.