Two freshers from same halls among 4 drug-linked deaths in Newcastle as 10 arrested
Two female students, both freshers aged 18, from the same halls of residence died after taking Ketamine, police have revealed today.
Another student, a 21-year-old male undergraduate from Northumbria University, died after taking MDMA.
And the fourth death over the weekend in the Newcastle area linked to drugs, an 18-year-old man from Washington, Tyne and Wear, who was not a student, also died from the effects of MDMA.
Police have made 10 arrests and carried out searches with drug dogs.
A team went through the Derwent Block at Park View Student Village searching police received the first report of an unresponsive woman at an address on Richardson Road.
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One 18-year-old, who was a student at Newcastle University, is believed to have taken a quantity of ketamine and was pronounced dead at the scene.
An 18-year-old male was arrested on suspicion of supplying a Class B drug and has since been released on police bail.
Northumbria Police received a further call to the same building on Richardson Road, where the first woman had been found.
Another 18-year-old student had died and it is believed ketamine had been present at the address. An 18-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of supplying a controlled drug and has been released on police bail.
Police have also confirmed they carried out a number of consent-based room searches at student accommodation with the Force’s drugs dogs, in collaboration with student wellbeing teams at Newcastle University and further patrols.
Officers were calked were called to a report of a cardiac arrest at a property on Coach Road Estate, Washington, where an 18-year-old had reportedly taken a quantity of MDMA and fallen ill.
Officers and emergency services attended but the man, who is not a university student, was pronounced dead a short time after.
Seven people were arrested in connection with this incident and have since been released under investigation.
The force was alerted to a report that a 21-year-old student from Northumbria University who had taken ill at an address on Melbourne Street, Newcastle.
It is suspected he had taken a quantity of MDMA. He was transported to hospital, but died a short time later. A 20-year-old male arrested on suspicion of supplying Class A drugs has since been released on police bail.
Chief Inspector Steve Wykes said: “This weekend we have seen the tragic loss of four young lives and our thoughts continue to be with the family and friends of those who have sadly died.
“Although our investigations are at an early stage and we continue to establish the circumstances around these tragedies, we want to reiterate our warning to people against taking drugs for recreational use.
“The consequences could cost you your life.
“We will continue to work with both universities and will be increasing our patrols in the areas where these tragedies have occurred.”
He added: “We would urge anyone with any information in relation to these tragedies to come forward – even the smallest piece of information could help us.
“If anyone has any information about who has supplied the drugs in question then we would also encourage them to contact us at the earliest opportunity.”
A spokesperson for Northumbria University said: “We are deeply saddened to confirm that one of the young people who died over the weekend was a Northumbria University student.
“We are in contact with the student’s family and friends to offer any support we can do at this tragic time. As this is an on-going police investigation we are unable to offer any further comment.”
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