SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Hampden County District Attorney’s office has a new tool to help fight the opioid crisis.
TruNarc is a handheld device that tests and analyzes suspected narcotics on site. The $35,000 device was given to the DA’s office by the Massachusetts National Guard Counterdrug Program. Hampden County is the first in the state to have such a tool, which can reveal the presence of synthetic opioids, like fentanyl.
Over 93 percent of toxicology reports in deadly overdoses show the presence of synthetic opioids, usually fentanyl. According to the DA, just a small amount of fentanyl can be deadly to an officer.
“TruNarc’s deployment in Hampden County will enhance the safety of officers and the public. Officers will be able to determine the type and potential lethality of the substances they are handling in mere seconds,” said Anthony Gulluni, Hampden County District Attorney.
Adjutant General of the Massachusetts National Guard, Major General Gary W. Keefe stated, “The National Guard Counterdrug Program supports local law enforcement and state counterdrug operations by leveraging its unique military capabilities, national resources and community focus. The procuring of TruNarc for use by the Hampden District Attorney’s is a continuance of our partnership in the fight against narcotics trafficking and promoting public safety in Massachusetts.”
The device will also immediately inform officers of the specific composition of narcotics, which will allow them to target potentially lethal batches without having to wait for lab analysis. It can identify more than 530 drugs in a single test.
This is a new and updated version of the device that can easily fit in the glove compartment of a cruiser.