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CNN Rides With Sheriff's Deputy to Document Fresno's 'Meth Hell'
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By Bill McEwen, News Director
Published 2 years ago on
December 1, 2021

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“Meth has taken control of a large swath of Fresno County,” CNN reported Tuesday.

“There were more meth overdose deaths in Fresno County in 2020 than those of any other kind of drug, according to the coroner’s unit.”

CNN reporter Kyung Lah went on a graveyard shift ride-along with Sheriff’s Deputy Todd Burk for an inside look at what it’s like to patrol Fresno County with methamphetamine readily available and devastating lives.

“Methamphetamine is destroying the community. It’s fueling nothing but crimes,” Burk said.

Drug Overdoses Climb Sharply in 2020

According to the coroner’s office, there were 184 single-drug overdoses last year — 121 of them from meth — in Fresno County.

Methamphetamine also contributed to nearly half of the 56 overdose deaths from combinations of drugs.

In total, the county had 254 drug overdoses in 2020 after seeing less than half that number in 2018 and 164 in 2019.

Meth use and overdoses have surged throughout the country during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to CNN.

Read more from CNN at this link.

Watch: CNN Rides Along With Deputy in Fresno’s ‘Meth Hell’

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Bill McEwen,
News Director
Bill McEwen is news director and columnist for GV Wire. He joined GV Wire in August 2017 after 37 years at The Fresno Bee. With The Bee, he served as Opinion Editor, City Hall reporter, Metro columnist, sports columnist and sports editor through the years. His work has been frequently honored by the California Newspapers Publishers Association, including authoring first-place editorials in 2015 and 2016. Bill and his wife, Karen, are proud parents of two adult sons, and they have two grandsons. You can contact Bill at 559-492-4031 or at Send an Email

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