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posted: 3/3/2010 12:01 AM

Charges lodged in heroin OD case in Libertyville

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Criminal charges have been lodged against two men in connection with a 17-year-old girl who nearly overdosed from heroin last week, authorities said.

Russell Gentry, 19, of Libertyville, is charged with possession of a controlled substance, according to the Lake County Metropolitan Enforcement Group. He was freed on bond from the Lake County jail Monday.

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Nicholas Kobitter, 20, also of Libertyville, is charged with drug-induced great bodily harm and possession of a controlled substance. MEG officials said Tuesday that Kobitter was being held in the county jail in lieu of $75,000 bond.

Libertyville police and MEG said the agencies launched an investigation Feb. 25 after learning that the 17-year-old girl had nearly overdosed on heroin provided to her by one of the suspects.

Authorities said the girl, a Libertyville High School junior, was not breathing when she was found by a relative. Police said the relative began cardiopulmonary resuscitation on the teen before she was taken to Advocate Condell Medical Center and stabilized there.

The incident is the latest heroin-related case in Lake County. Two weeks ago, Round Lake Park Police Chief George Filenko voiced concern about spiked heroin returning to the suburbs. His concern came after he said a 37-year-old woman and 43-year-old man overdosed on heroin in their village home Feb. 17.

Filenko said tests were ordered for the heroin found in the house.

Dozens of deaths were reported in the Chicago area in 2006 from heroin batches spiked with fentanyl powder. Fentanyl supposedly provides an extra jolt to heroin users.

Last year, more than 100 suburban residents died from heroin overdoses, according to local coroners.

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