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Officials: Counterfeit drug killed 1

MANKATO (AP) — Officials say one man has died and two others are recovering from an overdose of counterfeit oxycodone pills in Mankato.

The city’s Department of Public Safety said first responders were called to an apartment Thursday about 2 a.m. and found the three overdose victims. All three were men in their 20s.

One of the men, 23-year-old Marcus Kory Krogh, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other two were taken to Mayor Clinic Health System hospital where one was admitted to the intensive care unit and the other was treated and released.

The Minnesota River Valley Drug Task Force was called to help identify the drug responsible for the overdoses and its source and determined the pills were counterfeit oxycodone, which commonly contains dangerous amounts of fentanyl.

Counterfeit pills are made to look like actual prescription medication, thus increasing their value, officials said.

The final cause of death is pending autopsy and toxicology results from the Ramsey County Medical Examiner. The condition of the man in ICU is not known.

Iowa jury trials postponed

IOWA CITY (AP) — One-third of Iowa’s state government isn’t ready to fully reopen any time soon as the coronavirus continues to infect and kill people across the state.

The Iowa Judicial Branch announced Friday afternoon that it would cancel jury trials in criminal cases until Sept. 14, and push back any in-person proceedings until July 13.

Some hearings can begin earlier if courthouses meet recommended safety protocols, but the use of teleconferences and video conferences will continue to be encouraged.

Health officials have warned that crowded courtrooms could be venues to spread the virus to clerks, jurors, lawyers, witnesses, spectators and defendants.

Jury trials had previously been cancelled until July 13, while in-person hearings had been expected to resume June 1.

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