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HENRICO, Va. (WTVR)–The seemingly sudden and early death of actor Phillip Seymour Hoffman on Sunday shocked a nation who had come to love his dynamic and nuanced performances. He was only 46.

Hoffman said in a “60 Minutes” interview in 2006 that he had been clean since he was 23. In 2013 he entered a rehabilitation program after experimentation with prescription painkillers bloomed into a messy habit that led to heroin.

Hoffman was found with a syringe in his arm and a number of used syringes, prescription drugs and empty bags that authorities suspect used to hold heroin also were found in the apartment.

The path from opiate painkillers to heroin use is becoming well-tread, even among the young, experts say.

In 2010, two million people reported using prescription painkillers non-medically for the first time, nearly 5,500 a day, according to federal data.

That same year enough…

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