San Diego County

Father Shares Warning for Young People After Teen Daughter's Deadly Fentanyl Overdose

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NBC 7’s Dave Summers has the father’s warning.

The father of a North County teenager who died from an apparent fentanyl overdose is hoping his beloved daughter's death will cause young people to think twice about who they trust.

Brianna Moore, 18, of Oceanside, graduated from Mission Vista High School with a 4.3 GPA. She ran the Los Angeles Marathon twice, and was a concert violinist.

She became impassioned by nationwide demonstrations for racial equality in the wake of George Floyd's killing and followed the movement from San Diego to Los Angeles.

Top colleges like MIT, Brown, Stanford and Princeton recruited her, but she chose to stay local and attend Cal State San Marcos. With plenty of time before the start of her freshman year, she committed her summer to fighting inequality at homeless encampments in Echo Park in Los Angeles.

It was there that her father Duncan Moore said she got mixed in with the wrong crowd.

"I raised her to be fair to everyone and make sure everyone has a say or a chance," Duncan Moore said.

Brianna Moore was found dead, alone in a tent. Her autopsy indicates she died from using cocaine laced with fentanyl, according to her father. Duncan Moore hopes his daughter's death can serve as an example for young people using or being pressured into trying drugs.

"It only takes one time," he warned. "With this new drug out there, fentanyl, you don't know what you're getting."

Fentanyl is an extremely potent and highly addictive synthetic opioid. Even micro doses -- as little as the size of two grains of salt -- are fatal for most people, according to the DEA.

Brianna Moore's body was found August 9, just two days before she planned to be at school for orientation.

"There won't be a day that goes by that I don't think about her," Duncan Moore said. "I don't know if you have kids, but that's a tough one to take."

Her father now keeps a shrine of flowers, well wishes and photos of his daughter on his dining room table. He says his daughter should be remembered for her outgoing personality and the way she loved her family.