A Bernstein High School student was detained Thursday in connection with the death of another student who died at the Hollywood school after ingesting fentanyl-laced pills, according to authorities.
A law enforcement source told The Times that a teenager was detained by the Los Angeles Police Department for questioning.
At about 9 p.m. Tuesday, LAPD officers responded to a possible overdose at the school, located in the 1300 block of North Wilton Place, according to a police news release.
A girl, who was suffering from a possible overdose, told her stepfather that her friend was in the girls’ bathroom, police said. The parent and a school employee found an unresponsive student inside the bathroom and attempted live-saving measures.
The Los Angeles Fire Department arrived and pronounced the girl dead at the scene. The other student was taken to a local hospital in stable condition. The Los Angeles County coroner’s office identified the deceased girl as 15-year-old Melanie Ramos.
Ten students, including the four from Tuesday night, have overdosed in the last three weeks from drugs obtained at Lexington Park, located just a few blocks from Bernstein, according to Los Angeles Unified School District Supt. Alberto Carvalho.
The district didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment Thursday.
Carvalho met with the parents of Melanie on Wednesday morning and confirmed that two of the four girls who overdosed, including the one who died, are 15-year-olds from Bernstein. The third girl was a 17-year-old from Hollywood High School and Carvalho didn’t have information on the fourth victim.
The LAPD is working with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in the investigation because of the ongoing nature of the drug sales, said Carvalho.
Police warned that it’s becoming increasingly common for drug dealers to lace pills with fentanyl — a highly addictive synthetic opioid used in medical settings to address extreme pain. The drug is up to 100 times more potent than morphine, making it very dangerous outside of medical settings.
Times staff writer Richard Winton contributed to this report.