By Stephen Stirling
NJ Advance Media for
June 16, 2016

Fentanyl, an opioid up to 50 times more powerful than heroin, is killing New Jersey residents at a skyrocketing rate, representing a deadly new wrinkle to the state’s opioid crisis, data obtained by NJ Advance Media shows.

The ultra-potent drug, which was revealed to have killed Prince in April, has become increasingly common in the Garden State during the last few years. New data from the New Jersey Medical Examiner’s Office shows that through the first six months of 2015, it killed people at eight times the monthly rate compared to 2013.

Through June 2015, the most recent data available, fentanyl killed 150 people, more than in all of 2014. And this after deaths tripled from 2013 to 2014 in New Jersey.

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