Woman overdoses at Benton County jail

By The Tri-City HeraldJuly 17, 2014 

A 26-year-old woman is out of the hospital after apparently overdosing on heroin while she was an inmate at the Benton County jail.

The unidentified woman is out of custody recovering after the Tuesday incident, Lt. Scott Souza said. She was given a notice to appear in court.

Another inmate told corrections officers about 7 a.m. that the woman had overdosed, Souza said. Jail staff found her unresponsive in a pod that houses 11 other women.

Staff tried to revive the woman, he said. She was eventually taken to Trios Health in Kennewick.

She later admitted to officials that she had snorted heroin, Souza said. Jail staff found at least two syringes in a closet in the woman's pod. Pills also were found in a commons area.

The sheriff's office is investigating exactly how the woman got the drugs in jail. "Obviously it was smuggled in," Souza said.

Officials believe the incident was isolated, he said. A search did not turn up any heroin.

Jail staff commonly find contraband, though an inmate overdosing is unusual, Souza said. The woman has been in the jail since March and was expected to be released in September.

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