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Washington police officer dies of fentanyl, meth overdose while on duty

A police officer used fentanyl and methamphetamine and overdosed on the combination of drugs on Aug. 10 in Battle Ground, Washington, officials said.

Law enforcement said 54-year-old Sgt. Richard Kelly was pronounced dead at a hospital after being found unresponsive in his department office, and he suffered a medical emergency while on duty, OregonLive.com reported Thursday.

In a press release, the city of Battle Ground said the Clark County medical examiner determined Kelly died from the combined effects of the drugs:

In order to maintain transparency and an impartial investigation, Battle Ground Police Chief Mike Fort immediately requested assistance from the Vancouver Police Department to conduct an independent investigation into the matter.

Vancouver Police Department detectives have now completed their independent investigation into physical evidence observed at the scene, a review of the Clark County Medical Examiner’s report and toxicology reports. They concluded Sgt. Kelly’s death was “more likely than not caused by an intentional act and not accidental workplace exposure.”

According to KOIN, investigators are unsure where the fentanyl came from, but noted that it matched fentanyl that officers seized in the hours before the incident.

Fort said in a statement: “Drug addiction is a serious problem that often goes unsuspected and undetected. As a community, we must support local efforts to help anyone struggling with the effects of mental health and addiction so they can recover.

During a recent interview on Fox News Channel The American newsroomIn Laredo, Texas, Mayor Victor Trevino said officials need to work harder to stop fentanyl from crossing the border.

“And we must promote the idea that this is a crisis, not only for certain cities, but for the whole country,” he commented, before adding: “It is so here lies the crucial point: stopping him at the border. But before we get there, we need to stop it where it’s produced and shipped, the precursors shipped from China.

The White House recently asked Congress to dedicate an additional $24 billion to the fight against Russia in Ukraine, but only $800 million to combat fentanyl and other deadly drugs affecting communities across the United States. United, Breitbart News reported in August.

RELATED — “It’s Your Fault!” »: Republicans JEER Biden on fentanyl-related deaths

United States House of Representatives

“In 2022, approximately 110,000 Americans died from drug overdoses, primarily due to fentanyl smuggled from China and Mexico via free trade routes,” the report said.

According to the OregonLive.com report, Fort has since ordered an independent audit of how seized drugs and evidence are handled “and will institute training changes if necessary based on the findings, police said.”

Fort thanked neighbors and other police agencies for their support of his officers, adding that “Sgt. Kelly’s unexpected death was a significant and traumatic event for her colleagues, family and friends.


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