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Five inmates treated for possible overdoses at Mohave County Jail

Posted at 10:39 AM, Apr 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-19 13:04:42-04

KINGMAN, AZ — Five inmates at the Mohave County Jail were treated for possible drug overdoses Tuesday evening, according to a press statement issued by the Mohave County Sheriff's Office (MCSO).

According to MCSO, detention officers responded to a housing unit around 7 p.m. on Tuesday for an inmate who was "experiencing a medical emergency."

"In a very short period of time, officers and jail nurses were providing emergency treatment to a total of five inmates whose condition and symptoms all appeared as a drug overdose," the press statement reads.

The Kingman Fire Department and River Medical Ambulance responded to the jail and treated all five inmates with Narcan.

MCSO says all five inmates are recovering, with one remaining in the hospital for further evaluation.

It is unclear how the five inmates were able to obtain the drugs; however, Mohave County Sheriff Doug Schuster says, "Inmates are always looking for ways to circumvent the system."

Following an investigation of the Mohave County Adult Detention Facility, detention officers learned there may have been more of the drug-like substance in the jail.

Due to the investigation, Schuster suspended "all normal jail operations, including visitation and court functions."

Inmates in the affected units were searched, showered, provided new clothing, and moved to a different housing area as detention officers continue to investigate the alleged overdose.

Schuster says he believes the jail is dealing with a synthetic opioid that presents "serious health issues, as some of these new drugs are thousands of times more potent than morphine."

"We are methodically continuing our investigation and are working collaboratively with our local public safety partners and public health officials," Schuster said in a statement. "We want the public to know that there is no medical emergency involving any staff or inmates. We are simply being overly cautious and methodical to prevent that."