KENOSHA, WI – Today, Congressman Bryan Steil (WI-01) hosted a roundtable in Kenosha, WI focused on fighting fentanyl in Kenosha County and to discuss ways the federal government can help keep communities in Wisconsin safe. During the roundtable, leaders from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, North Central High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA), Kenosha County Sheriff’s Office, local leaders, and local medical experts discussed the increase in illicit fentanyl being found in Kenosha County, and how law enforcement is working to keep these dangerous substances off Wisconsin’s streets. 


Kemisha Sherrell of U.S. Customs and Border Protection speaks on the challenges of controlling the flow of illegal drugs over the border as U.S. Rep. Bryan Steil and Kenosha County Executive Samantha Kerkman look on during a fentanyl roundtable event that Steil hosted Wednesday at Gateway Technical College in Kenosha.

 “In Kenosha County, there were 48 overdose deaths from illicit fentanyl in 2021. In FY2021, CBP seized 11,201 pounds of fentanyl, more than twice the amount from a year before. These drugs are coming right into our communities. I will continue working with local, state, and federal partners to prevent this dangerous substance from devastating our communities.  While we work to prevent this drug from entering the USA, we must continue to raise awareness of the dangers of illicit fentanyl particularly when far too many victims are unaware they are taking it, said Rep. Bryan Steil.

“We appreciate the efforts of Congressman Steil in bringing this conversation to Kenosha County and in the work he’s doing on the federal level to battle the fentanyl crisis. It was an informative discussion, bringing a cross section of the community together, and it underscored the importance of building partnerships on the federal, state and local levels,” said Kenosha County Executive Samantha Kerkman.


A slide projected on the wall tells the dangerous story: A 2-milligram dose of fentanyl would be lethal to most Americans. Local and federal officials discussed the issue during a fentanyl roundtable that U.S. Rep. Bryan Steil hosted Wednesday at Gateway Technical College in Kenosha.

“We can’t seize our way out of this. We must get down to the root of this problem and identify who is profiting from this and behind these schemes. CBP is looking at a multi-layered strategy to get to the heart of this issue,” said Director Kemisha Sherrell, US Customs and Border Protection – Area Port of Chicago.

For additional photos from the roundtable, click here


Congressman Steil has been a leader in Congress in the fight against illicit fentanyl. In 2022, Steil cosponsored the HALT Fentanyl Act, legislation that would make fentanyl related substances a permanent Schedule I drug, led a letter to President Biden with 116 Members of Congress urging the Administration take action to combat illicit fentanyl, and recently sponsored two amendments that passed the House to combat illicit fentanyl. 

Steil has written pieces in the Racine Journal Times and the Janesville Gazette after hosting similar roundtables in Rock and Racine County on the increase in illicit fentanyl in Wisconsin. 

Attendees at the roundtable included:

Congressman Bryan Steil

Kenosha County Executive Samantha Kerkman 

Scott Albrecht, Deputy Director North Central – HIDTA  

Director Kemisha Sherrell, US Customs and Border Protection – Area Port of Chicago

Director Holly Smith, US Customs and Border Protection – Port of Milwaukee

Sgt. David Zoerner, Kenosha County Sheriff Office 

Det. Josh Zeller, Kenosha Police Department Special Investigations Unit 

Kari Foss, Behavioral Health Manager with Kenosha County Department of Human Services 

Chief David Smetana, Pleasant Prairie Police Department

Theresa Marie Newman, Sarah’s Hope & Recovery Foundation 

Supervisor Gabe Nudo, Kenosha County 12th District

Supervisor Erin Decker, Kenosha County 22nd District

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