Sheriff Youngblood discusses anti-camping ordinance, fentanyl in Kern County

Sunrise Interviews

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Sheriff Donny Youngblood joined 17 News at Sunrise Wednesday to discuss the recently passed anti-camping ordinance and the rising use of fentanyl in Kern County.

Public opinion around the anti-camping ordinance that was passed Tuesday by the Kern County Board of Supervisors has been mixed with some saying that it’s time to pass it similar to L.A. County, and some saying that this ordinance isn’t going to hit the root of the homelessness problem.

Youngblood and the Kern County Sheriff’s Office will be in charge of enforcing this ordinance.

“We’ll have a team of a deputy and a mental health worker working with people to offer them a place to stay,” Youngblood said.

“Businesses are tired,” he added. People are going out of business because, who wants to go into a restaurant when there’s someone sleeping right out front?”

Youngblood said the ordinance is directed at helping people who want help get the resources they need.

“There are people that are probably going to wind up in custody,” Youngblood said. “I hope it’s not many, I hope we can direct them to the services that they need and they want.”

Additionally, with the growing fentanyl in California, Orange County District Attorney Todd Spritzer ruled that dealers that sell drugs laced with fentanyl that then resulted in death could be charged with murder.

“You as a relative are in danger with having the drug anywhere near your house,” Youngblood said, due to the high potency of the drug.

This year alone, Youngblood said there have been 180 deaths from fentanyl in Kern County.

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