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Eight People Hospitalized After Suspected Overdoses On Skid Row

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Eight people were sent to the hospital on Friday evening following a wave of suspected overdoses on Skid Row.

The L.A. Times reports one LAPD officer was also treated at a nearby hospital.

LAPD Sgt. Chris Allen told the Times that it was an "odor in the air" that made the officer ill, "but the others, I believe, was overdoses from drugs. It has to do with narcotics."

Initial reports stated that six people had been hospitalized, but that number was upped this afternoon.

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On Friday at about 7:15 p.m., emergency crews responded to a call at the corner of 5th and San Pedro streets, where half a dozen people were unresponsive on the sidewalk. According to ABC, witnesses said those hospitalized had been smoking "spice," or synthetic marijuana when they overdosed.

Andy Bales of the Union Rescue Mission told CBS L.A. that one of the men who had smoked too much of the drug saw him "through blocks of glass. It’s glass that’s almost bulletproof. And he saw me and punched the glass. That’s how wound up he got." One woman who lives in the area calls spice usage on Skid Row "an epidemic."

"It's unusual to have that high number of overdoses in a short period of time," Allen said. "It's the people in the street that need to be aware of what they're buying."