Drug agents seize one pound of lethal fentanyl in Cheatham County

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CHEATHAM COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – A frightening amount of fentanyl is now off area streets Monday following a joint investigation by the Cheatham County Sheriff Narcotics unit, Clarksville Police and the TBI.

The long-term investigation happened suddenly on February 24 at a convenience store off of 41 A in Cheatham County.

According to Lt. Shannon Heflin of the Cheatham County Sheriff’s Department Narcotics Unit, agents watched as two alleged drug dealers met to sell a pound of pure Fentanyl.

“We decided it was pretty important to get that off the street, and we knew they were carrying firearms.”

According to drug agents, Ramiro Rodriguez was selling the lethal merchandise to convicted felon, Ramon Leis.

Agents say Leis, a convicted felon, was busted with $21,000 in cash. Leis was reportedly carrying a 9milimeter on his person and a 40 caliber Glock was found hidden in his car.

“Once it was determined it was fentanyl, we use all kinds of safety procedures. We don’t open the bag,” Heflin said.

According to experts, it only takes a few granules of Fentanyl to kill.

Helfin says that number can be as miniscule as 2,000 micrograms and a pound of Fentanyl is approximately 453 million micrograms.

Lt. Heflin explained, “According to experts, a pound of fentanyl is enough to have 226,000 lethal doses so the way we look at it, that’s 226,000 people’s lives we possibly saved.”

Though those statistics sound frightening, Lt. Heflin said most users are willing to roll the dice.

“Most of our drug addicts are looking for that dealer who has sold heroin or fentanyl to someone who has caused a death because they now know that product they are selling is potent.”

According to Cheatham County EMS, 34 people have overdosed in Cheatham County this year. There have been three deaths. Heflin says it is 100-percent expected that Fentanyl is going to be the cause in those three deaths.

Fentanyl is a huge problem in Davidson County as well. According to the Davidson County Health Department, in 2020 there were 474 fentanyl related overdose deaths, an increase of 60-percent from the year before.

And in 2020, health officials with Metro told News 2, fentanyl was detected in 77-percent of toxicology reports for all suspected drug overdose deaths. Also a steep increase from the year before.

Data is not available yet for Davidson County overdose deaths in 2021. Meanwhile, Ramiro Rodriguez is in the Cheatham County Jail. Ramon Leis is in federal custody charged by the ATF because he was a felon in possession of two handguns.

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