An undercover police officer from East Liverpool, Ohio, is thankful to be alive after accidentally overdosing on a powerful drug that can kill an adult in an instant — fentanyl. The officer is expected to make a full recovery after his accidental brush with death.
Patrolman Chris Green of the East Liverpool Police Department is described as a strong, athletic, 225-lb man, but all it took was one touch of fentanyl to send his body into an intense drug overdose. Green came in contact with the powerful opioid during a vehicle search on May 13.
“When I got to the scene, he was covered in it,” Green recalled of the suspect, noting the two suspects were trying to hide the drugs by smashing them into the car floor. “I patted him down, and that was the only time I didn’t wear gloves. Otherwise, I followed protocol.”
But it wasn’t long before Green, now back at the station with the suspects and drug evidence, began feeling the effects of the fentanyl. “I started talking weird, I slowly felt my body shutting down,” Green recalled.
Green was rushed to East Liverpool City Hospital where three doses of Narcan finally revived him — in addition to the first dose he received while still at the police station. “Officer Green does a great job, and it was just a freak accident that he would accidentally bump up against something while he was searching this vehicle, and for him to drop out like that is shocking,” said Captain Patrick Wright of the East Liverpool Police.
“Chris is a big strong guy,” Wright added. “He’s an ex MMA fighter, he’s 225 pounds, all the muscle, and it overtook him just like that.”
Green believes that in the midst of the terrifying ordeal, God protected him. “God was surely looking over me,” Green expressed, and his colleagues agree.
“If he would have been alone, he would have been dead,” noted Police Chief John Lane. “That’s how dangerous this stuff is.”
Chief Lane pointed out another terrifying possibility that thankfully was prevented. “What if he went home and got it on his family members?” Lane stated, which is a real possibility for law enforcement coming into contact with such deadly synthetic drugs.
After feeling the after-effects of the fentanyl, Green can’t imagine anyone willingly taking the drug. He described the pain in his head as “like it’s in a vice grip, my heart feels like I got kicked in the chest and my stomach feels like I have a case of the flu.”
“I can’t wrap my head around [why anyone would take the drugs],” Green declared. In addition to the injury caused to Green, police stated that a child’s car seat was installed in the backseat of the drug vehicle, and that the mother of the child came around to try and collect the seat.
Police refused, as the vehicle, and everything inside is contaminated with fentanyl. Chief Lane said they planned to seize the car and make sure it was destroyed.
“These people have no regard for anybody, not themselves, not the police, not their kids,” Lane said. “Their priority is not about anything but that next high.”
While Green made it out alive, law enforcement are on high alert, taking extra precautions to protect themselves. “We take the safety of our officers very seriously and will do our best to protect them,” stated Service Safety Director Brian Allen. “I was very impressed with the quick response of our other officers and emergency personnel.”