The tragic passing of music icon Prince has been one of the sad, defining moments of 2016. At the young age of 57, Prince Rogers Nelson was taken from the world far too soon and it was most likely due to a painkiller addiction which led to an overdose. The drug found in his system at the time of his death, fentanyl, is incredibly potent, which has led to his doctors being under investigation for Prince even possessing the drug without a prescription.
Now, according to The Guardian, it has come out that a number of pills taken from the singer’s home after his death have proven to be mislabeled and counterfeit. These pills — marked as Watson 385 — instead contain fentanyl as well as lidocaine and another drug. Fentanyl, which is 50 times as potent as heroin, has been growing in popularity and responsible for surges in overdoses around the country. The pills marked as Watson 385 were supposed to be a mixture of acetaminophen and hydrocodone, which is best known as Vicodin, but were instead the fentanyl and lidocaine mixture.
Anonymous officials claimed to have found over two dozen similar pills at Prince’s residence, as well as an aspirin bottle that contained 64 counterfeit tablets that were a mixture of fentanyl, lidocaine and U-4770, a synthetic drug eight-times as potent as morphine. Authorities, speaking from a place of anonymity, also confirmed that a bottle of oxycodone pills were discovered, prescribed for someone else.
These officials spoke anonymously as this is still an ongoing investigation, but considering that fentanyl wasn’t found to be in Prince’s system in tests performed on him prior to his death, chances are that he was not a longtime fentanyl user and that his overdose was indeed accidental. If the pills given to Prince were given to him under the guise of being Vicodin and not fentanyl, an accidental overdose makes sense.