Arrest Made After 5 West Point Cadets Overdose During Spring Break Trip to Florida Coast

A West Point official told The Associated Press that two of the cadets that fell ill were football players, one of whom was hospitalized

West Point Military Academy

An arrest has been made after five West Point cadets were among six men that overdosed on a drug laced with fentanyl just outside of Fort Lauderdale on Thursday, according to Florida officials.

The Wilton Manors Police Department said in a Friday press release that the victims were part of a group of New York college students visiting the area for spring break.

A U.S. Military Academy spokeswoman told The Associated Press on Saturday that five West Point cadets were involved in the incident, four of whom were hospitalized as a result.

On Friday, fire officials told the AP that two of the victims were placed on ventilators after falling critically ill. So far, at least one person has been released from the hospital.

Also on Friday, a West Point official told the outlet that two of the cadets that fell ill were football players, one of whom was hospitalized.

An arrest has been made in the case, per the Wilton Manors release, though no additional details were provided.

Police said they were called to a residence on Northwest 29th Court, later identified as a vacation rental, just before 5 p.m. local time on Thursday. Upon arrival, Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue rendered aid to six men who appeared to be "feeling the effects of a drug overdose," per Friday's release.

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In an interview, Battalion Chief Stephen Gollan of Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue said two witnesses had started performing CPR on two unconscious men on the lawn prior to the department's arrival, according to The New York Times. The two bystanders then went into respiratory arrest themselves as a result, he added.

Gollan said the victims were given Narcan, the brand-name version of the anti-overdose medication naloxone, the Times reported.

Four men were then transported to Broward General Medical Center while two others were transported to Holy Cross Hospital, both in Fort Lauderdale, per Wilton Manors police. A seventh person, a female, was later transported to the hospital after feeling sick.

After evacuating the building, the Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue Hazmat Team tested the material believed to be consumed by the victims "and discovered the substance was laced with fentanyl," police said Friday.

An investigation into the case remains underway.

With spring break festivities ramping up across the area, Gollan called Thursday's incident "extremely alarming," according to NBC Miami.

"Here we are in the first week of spring break and we have something like this taking place," the chief said. "Obviously if there's a bad batch, it's normally not isolated just to one buyer, it normally goes to everyone that purchased that same substance from whoever they got it from."

"It brings great concern that there could be other ODs over the next couple of days just basing what we're seeing with the fentanyl that was here," he added, noting that it is unclear how the cadets' recovery will go.

The Wilton Manors Police Department offered a stern warning to residents and tourists alike regarding the dangers of fentanyl in Friday's release: "This incident serves as a stark reminder to all, especially those visiting for Spring Break, of the deadly impacts of fentanyl," the WMPD said.

"This synthetic opioid continues to have detrimental impacts on many communities, and our agency remains committed to drug prevention and intervention initiatives," the department added.

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