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Posted on: February 11, 2016

LCSO Deputies Utilize Training, Naloxone to Prevent Possible Fatal Heroin Overdose

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 11, 2016

Contact: Liz Mills, Chief Information Officer, 571-251-5568 (mobile)
[email protected]

LCSO Deputies Utilize Training, Naloxone to Prevent Possible Fatal Heroin Overdose

Loudoun County, VA- Two Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office Deputies are being credited with potentially preventing a fatal heroin overdose after they utilized their training Wednesday to help an unconscious man.

Loudoun County Sheriff’s Deputies Placido Sanchez and Erick Ambroise responded to a home in the Western Loudoun area where an adult male was reportedly unconscious and indications were the incident was drug-related.

Deputy Sanchez and Deputy Ambroise observed the subject go in-and-out of consciousness before becoming unresponsive. Based on his training and recognizing the indications of a potential heroin overdose, Deputy Ambroise utilized his agency issued naloxone to help revive the man. The subject was taken to the Cornwall Campus of Inova Loudoun Hospital where hospital personnel advised the actions taken by the deputies likely saved the man from a fatal overdose.

This is the first-time naloxone was administered by a Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office Deputy since a pilot program to utilize the potentially life-saving drug was initiated in December 2015. Deputy Sanchez and Deputy Ambroise are among 31 Loudoun Sheriff’s Deputies who were trained last year as part of the pilot program to equip deputies with nasal naloxone. The nasal form of the drug can reverse the effects of opiates such as heroin, oxycodone and hydrocodone. The training was conducted by members of the Loudoun County Fire and Rescue System, under the authority of Dr. John Morgan, Operational Medical Director for Loudoun County’s Combined Fire and Rescue System.

“We are proud of these two deputies who utilized their training effectively to potentially help save a life, but this is just one part of our efforts to have an impact on those effected by heroin addiction,” said Loudoun County Sheriff Mike Chapman. “Our involvement in cases such as this does not end until we follow through on all aspects of the investigation to determine what drugs were involved and who is supplying them. We also understand we cannot arrest our way out of this problem, this is why we have taken a proactive approach with our partners in the community to develop educational and prevention programs,” added Sheriff Chapman.

The pilot program is part of the comprehensive approach of the Heroin Operations Team (HOT) initiative announced by Sheriff Chapman and U.S. Representative Barbara Comstock (VA-10th District) in April 2015. The initiative includes a proactive approach of enforcement (at all levels), education, prevention and recovery by incorporating local, state and federal law enforcement, Loudoun County Public Schools, Loudoun County Department of Mental Health, Substance Abuse, and Developmental Services and other entities within the Community Services Board.

“I would like to commend Loudoun County Sheriff’s Deputies Placido Sanchez and Erick Ambroise in potentially saving a life of a man who was overdosing on heroin by putting their new training into action and using naloxone. The use of heroin is gripping our community, but through the efforts of Sheriff Mike Chapman’s office and the Heroin Operations Team, we are fighting this scourge on all fronts with law enforcement action and community involvement,” said Congresswoman Barbara Comstock.

The pilot program was initiated in the Western Loudoun Station. This area was selected to begin the pilot program due to the rural population and extensive square mileage, which can impact overall response times by emergency responders. In some cases, deputies may be the first to arrive on the scene of a potential overdose.

Law enforcement agencies across the country have begun equipping their personnel with naloxone in response to an increase in opiate overdoses nationwide. Fatal overdoses of heroin have nearly tripled nationwide since 2010. In Loudoun County, the number of fatal heroin overdoses increased significantly between 2013 and 2014, however, collective efforts in Loudoun County for this year have resulted in a decline of fatal overdoses in 2015.

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