Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Unusual Circumstances in a Death by Heroin

A police chief's daughter was missing for days from a local bar, that I once frequented many, many years ago. I knew people who had worked there, and I knew people who hung out there. I also knew that coke heads frequented this establishment. Hell, I have done a lot of coke in those bathrooms back in the day.
The search was ongoing for days, and the story was the top of the news. In the back of my mind, I felt like I knew what could have happened. I felt like if she was missing from there at the early morning hours, she probably left to do drugs with the wrong person. I did not have any thoughts on whether she was murdered, or whether she ODed, or whether she was still out there somewhere on a drug induced binge. But, I did think that if she was at that place, drugs were probably involved.
They found her body in a storage unit Sunday, located on a road that I once lived on. The reports then grew much more vague, and the details have been somewhat secluded. There was a warrant out for the man she was seen leaving the bar with. Her father, the police chief in a neighboring city, made the statement that she should not be judged for what she has done. I had the sinking feeling in my heart that this death was, in fact, drug related. To a former addict, who used to frequent that particular coke bar...to the former addict, who knew people who used coke that still frequented that bar, I thought she had just become involved with the wrong people.
Well, they found the guy. He is not a coke head, but instead is a heroin addict. He has possession charges, as well as larceny and sexual charges. And he claims she ODed. He claims they were doing black tar, and when he woke up she was dead. Some have reported he could have taken her to the hospital at one point, but he was afraid. Regardless of the exact circumstance, she is dead...and he is being charged with murder.
Sad, sad story for all those involved. It seems to hit home with me a little harder now that I know heroin was involved. I feel like I have more of an opinion about it now. And I also am thankful that I was never that unfortunate. I have mixed feelings about the whole thing.
This man was fucking stupid to stash the body. He stashed the body, and then he checked into a hotel. Then, a couple days later...he skipped town and ended up in New York, where he was recently arrested. This man was really fucking stupid to that. It makes him look like a murderer...and then I wonder...is he?
The probability that she died of a heroin overdose is high if they were shooting black tar. Would he have been charged if he had taken her to the hospital? Or called the police? Is he in the wrong, or is it her own fault for shooting heroin?
I think back to the near death experiences of some of my friends. I saved a life or two, shooting them up with salt water after they turned blue. I have thrown them in the shower, I have walked them around until they came back to. I can think of at least seven lives I have saved this way. One day, I actually had 3 people go out right in front of me, and I brought them all back. I saved someone in a bar. I saved several in my apartment.
But, I did not want to call an ambulance. I did not want to get a charge for drugs. I did not want the authorities going through my house, searching for drugs, because we all know that is what happens when the ambulance comes to rescue an OD. And death from a heroin overdose can happen very quickly.
When I sold dope, I used to tell my customers not to shoot up in my house. I warned them if they did, and they went out...I would just put them out on the corner and call an ambulance from the pay phone. I warned them that I would let them die rather than get in trouble myself. Now, I think about that cold, callous, and addicted idea. But, it is the case with addicts. It is the way it is. I know several people who have also dumped dead people who have ODed. And I also question...was it murder? I don't think it was murder. But, I do think there is something wrong with that whole scene. Several years ago, I would have been outraged that the city is shouting to convict this "killer.' Today, my feelings are mixed. And today, I am just very blessed to be alive.
I think about all the dangerous situations I put myself in. I think about all the times something could have happened to me...and it did not. I am quite positive that I put myself in many more dangerous situations than this poor young lady did, and today, I am just very thankful to be alive. I often wonder why things like this happen. Why she was the one who died, and how I escaped alive. I wonder why I lost a friend to a brain aneurysm, and why I survived all the shit I did to myself. I have to believe that everything happens for a reason. And I know that I am still alive to fulfill some greater purpose.
Still, I am sad for this poor girl. I am broken hearted for her family. All my parents out there who read this, I know this is the worst fear when you have an addicted child. And yet, I am still conflicted about the man they arrested. Is he a murderer? If she overdosed, he did not kill her per say. If he, as he claims, simply woke up and she was dead, is he at fault? If he refused medical help, is he a murderer? Or is heroin the only murderer here? I think if it were my son, I would want to kill this man myself.
I think back to my past, and a part of me cannot convict this man. But, I think about my child, and I know how one could convict this man. A conundrum, to say the least. Any thoughts out there on this one?


  1. One night we got a call from a hospital emergency room it was midnight. The person on the other end of the phone ask if we knew a young man late teens dark hair. He had no ID but he did have a book of checks with our name on them in his pocket.

    We said we had a son 19 but he was at college as far as we knew 125 miles away.

    The person on the line said if this could be our son we need to come to the hospital ASAP. Right now they were trying to revive him. He was dropped off unconscious and not breathing.

    We found out our son and a couple of his "buddies" had come back to KC to score some stuff. At that time our son was using Fentenayl under his tongue. While they were driving back he used a patch and was eating beef jerky. The Fentenyal stopped his throat from swallowing and a piece of jerky logged in his throat. He could not breath and was choking to death.

    Luckily they were driving by a hospital at the same time. Our son had passed out when they pulled up to the emergency room door. The security guard said he noticed that they rolled someone out onto the sidewalk and jumped back in the car and sped away.

    When he guard checked he was still alive but not breathing. Immediately the emergency room doctors started cpr and cleared his airway. They restored his breathing and not knowing what he had taken they shot him full of Narcan.

    By the time we got there he was conscious and breathing.

    Alive only because they HAPPENED to be next to a hospital.

  2. Dad and Mom...I think often about how lucky I am to be alive. So many near misses with death. Life is too precious as it hangs in such a precarious balance at times. I am thankful that your son is still alive. He is in my thoughts, as I know he has begun his journey to sobriety. He remains in my prayers. He is truly blessed to have such wonderful parents. And you are truly blessed he happened to be near a hospital that night.

  3. I too had 3 drop on me what a mess,running from 1 to another .my good friend od and her father wanted a murderer but the coroner had the good sense to see otherwise.Im so glad I dont live in the US, sorry.

  4. I have been following this story in the news. Your perspective is especially relevant and interesting in light of your past.

    I don't know how I feel about the guy. I am conflicted, due to the circumstances. He should probably be punished, but maybe some jail time combined with rehab? Not sure.

  5. Weren't they equally responsible? Aren't they both sick with addiction? Would the police chief want to see his daughter prosecuted if it was the guy who died instead of her and she panicked and hid his body?

    Maybe I missed something....