Dowagiac officer successfully saves life of overdose victim

Published 9:38 am Monday, April 18, 2016

An officer with the Dowagiac Police Department successfully saved the life of city resident experiencing an overdose using the recently deployed NARCAN kit, according to a release from the department.

According to the release, officers were dispatched to the city residence at around 5:30 p.m. April 6 after receiving a report of a possible overdose. Upon arriving at the scene, police found a person having severe difficulty breathing due to overdosing on an unknown substance.

The officers determined the victim may have taken opiate-based substance and administered NARCAN (Naloxone) in an effort to save the person’s life, in accordance to department policy.

Staff with Pride Care EMS helped police at the scene treat the victim, who recovered from the overdose a short time later. The Dowagiac resident was transported to Borgess-Lee Memorial Hospital for treatment and was released later that evening.

Police later learned the victim was indeed suffering from an accidental overdose of heroin, and would have died if not for the NARCAN administered by police.

Officers of the Dowagiac Police Department began carrying NARCAN in December 2015. The substance is designed to block the effects of an Opdiod-based overdose and is carried by several departments throughout the state.

This was the first use of NARCAN by Dowagiac officers.

The department is not releasing any further information about the victim or location of this incident to protect the privacy of the victim.