THE tragic death of a third teenager through drugs in North Yorkshire has sparked anger and protests that not enough is being done to tackle the problem of illegal substances on the streets.

Calls for everyone to work together have been made by the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Julia Mulligan in a hard hitting statement.

The latest death happened in York on Sunday September 27. North Yorkshire police reported Josh Reeson, aged 15, from New Earswick, who had been found by a member of the public in the Hospital Fields area of the city, died in hospital after taking illegal drugs. Six people aged from 14 to 37 were arrested.

It follows the shocking death of 15-year-old Leah Heyes in Northallerton in May last year after she was given ecstasy and the death of a 14-year-old girl in Scarborough in May this year.

Ms Mulligan said: “The death of a 15-year-old boy from York after taking illegal drugs is a tragedy, and it makes me angry. The availability of illegal substances on our streets is a huge concern to me, and has been for some time. Not enough has been done to tackle this, and that has to change.

“Only by working together, government, police, councils and partners can we do that. While there have been efforts across North Yorkshire and York following previous tragedies, more needs to be done both to understand the scale of the challenge we face and work out what to do to address it.

“I have been clear that, despite what many people may think, North Yorkshire and York has a drugs problem. It’s only by being honest about that, engaging with the communities who know what is happening and working more collaboratively that we will be able to take action. I am committed to doing that, and I will be encouraging all other organisations to do so too.”

It is believed the boy was with a group of other people who were also taking illegal drugs when he collapsed.

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Chief Inspector Jim Glass said: “This is an extremely tragic incident which has resulted in a teenage boy losing his life.

“A team of specially trained officers are supporting the family at this time. We will do everything we can to find out how the drugs ended up in the hands of these teenagers. However we also need help.

“If anyone knows someone who is dealing drugs, or is concerned about a person who is taking drugs, please come and speak to the police. We are here to help and to keep you safe and any information you can give us might just save a life.”

Anyone who saw a group of teenagers in the area early on Sunday morning, or who knows anyone who is taking or dealing drugs is asked to contact North Yorkshire Police, dial 101, press 1 and pass information to the force control room.