UPDATE SEPT. 12, 6:30 P.M.:
Law enforcement officers face the threat of weapons and violence every day, but the opioid crisis could pose an even greater threat.
Bluefield Police Chief Dennis Dillow said a traffic stop on Bluefield Avenue put seven police officers in danger.
“When you face chemical agents that you don’t have a lot of control over, that makes it so much more risky,” Dillow said.
Bluefield police officers, Randall Johnson and Devin Williams, pulled over a vehicle during a routine traffic stop Tuesday afternoon. Three people were in the car at the time.
Police searched the car and found narcotics laced with some kind of chemical agent. When Officer Johnson opened the bag containing the narcotics, he inhaled the substance and was incapacitated. According to Dillow, back up arrived just in time.
“Sergeant Pertee administered narcan to Officer Johnson on the scene,” Dillow said. “Officer Williams showed signs of distress on the scene and he was transported to Bluefield Regional Medical Center where they administered narcan to him.”
A total of seven officers, including Johnson and Williams, were taken to Bluefield Regional Medical Center, for de-contamination.
“It’s just a safety precaution so you don’t contaminate others, because if you take it home what would happen if your child or your wife comes into contact with your clothing…the next thing you know they’re contaminated as well,” said Dillow.
Dillow added he is thankful that Narcan was in the hands of his officers that day. He also said it could be a while for labs to determine what the narcotics were laced with.
Sarah Sizemore was arrested and charged with possession of heroin with intent to distribute. The investigation into the exposure is ongoing. Dillow said the officers will make a full recovery.
Seven Bluefield Police Officers were sent to the hospital after being exposed to a narcotic agent.
Bluefield Police Chief Dennis Dillow told 59News officers pulled over a car on Bluefield Avenue. Three people were in the car at the time.
Police searched the car and found narcotics laced with an agent. When Officer Johnson opened the bag containing the narcotics, he breathed in the agent and became incapacitated.
Another officer on the scene, was able to administer narcan to Johnson. Officer Williams then began showing signs of distress and was taken to Bluefield Regional Medical Center and given narcan.
Chief Dillow said a total of seven officers were decontaminated at the hospital. He added decontamination is important because there is a huge risk of contaminating the officers’ children and family.
Sarah Sizemore was arrested and charged with Possession of Heroin with the intent to Distribute.