Opioid death takes toll on Manitou Springs, Colorado

*TRIGGER WARNING* This article contains mention of drugs, death, and sensitive topics

The Econolodge hotel, on an early september morning, where the tragic death of Jayden Molitor occured.

Paige Harrison

The Econolodge hotel, on an early september morning, where the tragic death of Jayden Molitor occured.

Paige Harrison , Editor

In late July, shortly before midnight, a young boy was found dead at a hotel in Manitou Springs, Colorado. 

Late on Saturday July 24, police were called to the Econolodge hotel in the 100th block of Manitou. The police arrived to find a 4-year-old boy’s body, with no context of what had happened. 

In explaining the initial thought of responders who were on the emergency call, Officer Strider said, “As far as what was happening at that time, nobody really knew exactly what happened.” She also mentioned that the police were unaware of the cause of death until the coroner’s report came out. 

Concluded by the coroner’s report, Jayden Molitor died of Fentanyl overdose after drinking a powdered drink mix that had the synthetic opioid mixed into it. Molitor consumed a dosage of the drug that is enough to kill an adult sized person.

“The death of this small child may actually project a meaningful outcome for the city of Manitou Springs. Although the death of a 4-year-old is devastating to our city, police will hopefully be gaining more resources for situations like this,” said Strider.

Principal of Manitou Springs High School, Mr. Hull, expressed his concerns of student and staff safety after this incident had occurred. “…as a principal and a school leader, the first priority is the safety and welfare of our students. So anytime we have a community issue, our concern is keeping our students safe,” Hull said.

Most teachers of the high school had similar responses to how they think this will be effective towards not only our community but our school as a community. 

Mr. Brown, history teacher, said that he’s worried about the perception of Manitou, saying that “perception is a killer”, and that there is worry around Manitou being even further perceived as a place where drugs are a heightened occurrence. 

Another teacher, Mr. Slama, science, similarly said that his initial reaction was devastation as most people would feel, but further into the interview, Slama expressed deeper concerns.

While talking about the opioids Slama said, “You take even a little bit too much of that and you’re done for completely, it shuts down your diaphragm.” 

The use of Fentanyl, whether it be in a counterfeit pill or being used recreationally, is deadly. The drug’s dosage amount for overdose is anywhere from 500-2500 micrograms according to a harm reduction website for drug use. 

For reference, a deadly dose of Fentanyl can fit on the tip of a pencil. If you or someone you know is using party drugs like Xanax, Oxycodone, or Fentanyl, be aware of the harm that comes with it and seek help.