Holiday Season Here We Come!
We hope everyone had an amazing Thanksgiving holiday! This month we are back with a Self-Care 469Tip of the Month, then we move on to a notice about letters being sent to our school partners, National Impaired Driving Month, and a section touching on the current trends on fentanyl. As usual, we end with our Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County Featured Story of the Month which will be a “Year in Review” of our program. We hope everyone has a great holiday season and wish you a Happy New Year!
Self-Care 469Tip of the Month
Holiday Season Self-Care

The holiday season can easily be full of hustle and bustle, strong emotions, and stress. That is why it is important to take a moment to realize that although the holidays are about giving to others, they are also about giving to yourself. Below are some self-care strategies you can utilize during the holiday season1:

  • Keep self-care scheduled as a regular activity throughout the holidays.
  • Practice gratitude, especially for those in your life.
  • If you are experiencing negative emotions, try to understand why you might be experiencing them. 
  • Monitor your stress level; don’t over do it.
  • Be present around the presents! Enjoy the moment.

Whatever the holiday season looks like for you, take time to tend to your own emotions, health, and wellbeing. You deserve it!
Letters to Our School Partners
School Partners! Crime Stoppers has mailed out a letter to all Tarrant County school principals with basic information about Campus Crime Stoppers and Friends for Life. The envelope includes a letter from Rachel, Julian, and our Standing Committee Chair Andy Corso as well as a flyer with an overview of the CCS/FFL programs and two QR code stickers like the one seen below. These front-adhesive stickers can be placed in high traffic areas so that students can quickly snap a picture of the QR code which will lead them to our website, reporting options, and social media pages. We hope this letter makes it to your principal as it provides valuable information about how to best utilize and engage with our program. Please reach out to us if you have any questions!
National Impaired Driving Month
Since 1981, every U.S. President has declared December National Impaired Driving Prevention Month.2 This month is aimed at raising awareness of the consequences that impaired driving can cause. 

Tarrant County is a community that deals with a large amount of cars on the road every day. Sadly, in the United States, 29 people die every day in a car accident involving an alcohol-impaired driver; this equals to one death every 50 minutes.3 In Texas, there have been over 13,000 deaths involving alcohol-impaired drivers.3 At every age-range, Texans have died at a higher rate when compared to the nation as a whole.3 Texans 21-34 years old have the highest rate at 8.8 per 100,000 people.3

It is also important to remember that driving under the influence of any substance, whether it’s alcohol, weed, prescription drugs, or any other illicit drug is dangerous. Driving under the influence reduces a driver’s judgement, coordination, and reaction time.4

If you find yourself or a friend under the influence, do not drive. Use a ride-sharing service, call a cab, call a friend, or if possible stay put until you’re sober. Remember: a $20 Uber ride is better than $20,000 in legal fees, jail time, or funeral costs.

If you see someone actively driving drunk or under the influence, please call 911. Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County is able to take anonymous tips on repeat DWI offenders. Anonymous tips can be reported by calling 817-469-8477, going to www.469tips.com, or using the “P3 Tips” mobile app.
Understanding Fentanyl
What is fentanyl?
Fentanyl is considered a synthetic opioid that is up to 100 times more potent than morphine.4 Fentanyl is a regulated prescription drug used for patients with severe pain.4 However, fentanyl, like many other opioids, is made and sold illegally.4  

How is fentanyl used?
When medically prescribed it can be given as a transdermal patch, a shot, or even as lozenges.4 Illegally, fentanyl is sold as a powder, made into pills, or even put into eye droppers and nasal sprays.4 Drug dealers may also mix fentanyl with other drugs like cocaine, heroin, meth, and more.4

 It’s important to remember fentanyl is given at extremely low doses when medically prescribed because it only takes a small amount for it to work. This is why it is such a lucrative drug when it comes to illegal drug making and selling: less is needed for an extreme high.

Can you overdose on fentanyl?
Yes, individuals can overdose on fentanyl. Like other opioids, a fentanyl overdose results in slowed breathing and decreases oxygen reaching the brain (hypoxia) which may lead to a coma, brain damage, or death.4 It is easy for individuals to overdose on fentanyl because how low the dose has to be for it to produce its effects. This also makes it even easier for those who have low-tolerance to opioids to overdose. Fentanyl overdose can be treated with the use of naloxone (brand name: Narcan).4

What is the current state of fentanyl overdose in the U.S./Texas?
As seen in the graphic above, the U.S. has gone through three major opioid epidemics with the first being prescription opioids starting in the 1990s, which is now slowly trending downward.5 Second, heroin overdoses increased starting in 2010 and are now starting to slow.5 Third is synthetic opioids, which includes fentanyl, starting in 2013 and still peaking through 2019 (the latest year for data).5 In Texas, synthetic opioid overdose deaths remained stable until deaths from synthetic opioid overdoses increased 25% from 2018 to 2019.6 Texas saw 358 synthetic opioid overdose deaths in 2018 and 423 deaths in 2019.6

Synthetic opioid deaths are primarily being driven by illicitly manufactured fentanyl.6 Importantly, more and more fentanyl analogs are being produced with some being less potent and other much more potent than regular fentanyl.6

Fentanyl is also affecting those in our Tarrant County community. This summer 20-year old Nicco Cole from Colleyville died from a mixture of para-fluorofentanyl, a fentanyl analog considered to be very powerful, and benzodiazepines.7 About a month before Cole’s death, a 12-year old girl named Ellianna Martinez from Richland Hills died from fentanyl toxicity; one of the youngest deaths via fentanyl in Tarrant County this year.7 Additionally, Tyler Skaggs, the starting pitcher for the LA Angels died in June of 2019 in his Southlake hotel from a mix of fentanyl, oxycodone, and alcohol. It was determined that fentanyl was the primary contributor to his death.

What can be done to help?
  • Reach out to those who may be suffering with addiction.

  • For those with substance use problems, emphasize rehabilitation over criminality where possible.

  • Increase public awareness of the basic facts of fentanyl including its potentially harmful effects and consequences.

  • Consider training on Narcan/naloxone administration especially if you work in a field that may deal with overdose situations.

  • Utilize programs like Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County to provide anonymous tips on those illegally producing, sellings, or in possession of fentanyl. Tips can be made by calling 817-469-8447, going to www.469tips.com, or using the “P3 Tips” mobile app.
Happy Holidays!
Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County wishes everyone a Happy Holiday season! We are so thankful for everyone’s participation this year. We appreciate all your hard work and dedication to community safety!

Crime does not stop even during the holidays so make sure you are staying vigilant. Keep a look out for your neighbors homes if they’re out of town, make sure to bring packages in soon after delivery, and always lock your car and house! Crime Stoppers is open 365 days a year, including the holidays. If you have any information on a suspected criminal act or wanted fugitive, you can leave an anonymous tip by calling, going online, or using one of our mobile apps.
Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County's
Featured Story of the Month
2021 Year in Review

The Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County program has continued to push through this year that, while better than 2020, still had it’s uncertainties because of the effects of the pandemic. However, we are excited that our community is in a much better place now compared to this time last year. Below are a few things we’ve accomplished this year:

  • New School Materials and Resources: The Crime Stoppers programming staff worked hard over the summer to create new school resources and materials for our school partners. This includes a new and improved Campus Crime Stoppers operational manual, engagement checklists, and new QR code stickers.

  • Awareness & Engagement Google Site: An Awareness & Engagement Google Site was created for school partners so that they had one central location with all the necessary materials for engagement on their campuses. This site is different from the main website in that it provides school personnel access to documents and forms that are not for public distribution while also providing other engagement resources. 

  • Crime Stoppers School Trainings: Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County has been excited to provide both in-person and virtual training to our school partners! Having the capacity to provide virtual training when necessary has been an extremely helpful development from the pandemic. We’re excited to be even more accessible to our community.

  • Virtual Stop Violence Conference: Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County sponsored One Safe Place’s first ever 3-day Virtual Stop Violence Conference! We had over 75 attendees who learned about new emerging trends and innovative strategies on crime prevention and victimization issues.

  • State Conference Awards: This year at the Crime Stoppers State Conference, the Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County program won two productivity awards for their 2020 efforts: the Greatest Dollar Recovery, Population more than 1,000,000 and the Most Cases Cleared, Population more than 1,000,000.

We are so happy to have the support of our community’s schools, law enforcement, and citizens. Thank you to all those who have and continue to work with us to prevent crime and the fear of crime in Tarrant County. Be on the lookout for our 2021 End of Year Report sometime in early 2022!
Training, Contact Info, Print Material,
and Engagement Site
Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County is committed to providing you with appropriate resources, training, and information. Please feel free to contact our team with any questions, requests, or concerns. Below are a few things that your school, department, or organization can do to begin utilizing our various resources.
If you would like general program training for staff, please contact Rachel at rgilbert@onesafeplace.org.

If you have new contact information for the 2021-2022 school year, please complete the Campus Crime Stoppers/Friends for Life Contact Information Form by clicking here.

Print materials can be requested when filling out the contact information form, however, if more are needed a request can be made by emailing Julian at jrangel@onesafeplace.org. Items can be picked up at One Safe Place by appointment or delivered to your location as staffing allows.
SCHOOL PARTNERS!! Please visit our Awareness & Engagement Google Site!

Our various resources on this Google site can be utilized throughout the school year to engage your campus and help realize the full potential of the Campus Crime Stoppers and Friends for Life programs.

The Awareness & Engagement Google Site includes our NEW & IMPROVED Campus Crime Stoppers Operational Manual that provides a guide on how Crime Stoppers operates, answers many of your general questions, and gives you various ways that you can increase awareness and engagement across your campus and/or district!

Important Links (click to visit):
Follow Us!
Please feel free to follow us on all of our social media!

If your organization, school, or agency has social media pages please have them follow us and we will be sure to follow back!!
If you know of any other individuals, teams, or organizations that would like to be a part of this newsletter please do not hesitate to have them contact either Rachel or Julian so that they can be added to the email list.

If you have any questions, suggestions, or concerns regarding Crime Stoppers of Tarrant County and our various programs please feel free to reach out to us at any time and we will respond in a timely manner.

Best regards,

Rachel Gilbert
Director, Special Programs

&

Julian Rangel
Engagement and Outreach Specialist

1100 Hemphill Street
Fort Worth, Texas 76104
817-469-8477 | 469tips.com | "CCS FFL" & "P3Tips" mobile apps