A little more than a month after the Seattle Police Department partnered with the Marah Project to equip bike patrols with a drug to reverse the effects of overdoses, two officers on Sunday became the first members of SPD to administer a dose of the medication, saving a young woman’s life.
Bike Officers James Kellett and Randy Jokela responded to the Westlake Mall at about 6:30 PM Sunday after a witness found a 21-year-old woman unresponsive in a third-floor bathroom.
When officers arrived, they found the witness performing CPR on the young woman as she kneeled over her in a bathroom stall strewn with a half-dozen needles and a heroin cooker.
Officers Kellett and Jokela saw the 21-year-old’s skin had turned pale and her breathing had slowed, so they quickly administered a dose of Naloxone spray. They began talking to the woman, who opened her eyes about 30 seconds later.
Seattle Fire Department medics arrived and put the woman on oxygen. She was able to walk out of the mall under her own power and transported to Harborview Medical Center
This incident will become part of the ongoing study conducted by the University of Washington into SPD’s use of Narcan/Naloxone, for a possible department-wide expansion of the program.
As a reminder, Washington law provides immunity from criminal drug possession charges for anyone seeking medical aid for themselves or someone else experiencing an overdose.