OH: 2 Toledo police officers treated for suspected opioid exposure

The Blade News –

Suspect is accused of removing a bag of fentanyl from his person, ripping it open, and throwing it into the back seat of a police cruiser before entering the jail.

For the second time in less than a week, Toledo police officers received medical treatment opioid exposure.

Officers Ashlyn Vey and Amber O’Connell were assisting vice detectives at about 2:30 a.m. Wednesday with required transport procedures, according to a report. The officers came into contact with a white powdery substance and soon began experiencing symptoms of a possible opioid exposure.

Records in Toledo Municipal Court show Ivan D. Thomas, 25, of the 4400 block of Bellevista Drive in West Toledo, is accused of removing a bag of fentanyl from his person, ripping it open, and throwing it into the back seat of a police cruiser before entering the Lucas County jail. An affidavit specifies Officer Vey began experiencing overdose symptoms shortly after collecting the evidence.

Additional court records show officers executed a search warrant at the Bellevista address, which is within 1,000 feet of Whittier Elementary School, and found 12 grams of a substance that field-tested positive for fentanyl as well as $9,425 in cash. Christopher J. Hackett, Jr., 31, of the same address, was found inside the residence and arrested, as was Thomas.

Thomas is charged in the municipal court with a first-degree felony count of aggravated trafficking in drugs, a second-degree felony count of possession of a controlled substance, a third-degree felony count of tampering with evidence, and a fourth-degree felony count of assault on a peace officer.

Judge Nicole Khoury on Wednesday set Thomas’ bond at $25,000 for the trafficking charge, plus supervised recognizance bonds on the other charges. He remained in the Lucas County jail as of Wednesday afternoon and is scheduled for a preliminary hearing March 25.

Hackett is charged with a first-degree felony count of aggravated trafficking in drugs and a second-degree felony count of possession of a controlled substance. Judge Khoury released him on a supervised recognizance bond Wednesday morning. He is to reappear June 19 for a preliminary hearing.

Neither the police report nor court records indicate whether either officer was administered naloxone, the overdose-reversal drug. Both were transported to Mercy Health St. Vincent Medical Center for treatment and observation. They are expected to return to work, the report states.

The vehicle they were in will be decontaminated.

On Sunday, a different pair of officers were sent to the hospital after an exposure incident while making an arrest. Officer Nicholas Cook was administered naloxone after he had picked up a fold of possible narcotics thrown by a suspect and later began experiencing symptoms. He and Officer Michael Mugler II were both evaluated at St. Vincent’s and will return to work.

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