TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A Florida sheriff’s deputy had a brush with death after he was exposed to suspected fentanyl during a traffic stop investigation on Thursday.
Flagler County deputies said the incident began when a reckless driver reportedly fled a hit-and-run and then continued to drive recklessly on SR-11.
The vehicle ultimately stopped near 15150 SR-11 where bystanders waited with the driver until law enforcement arrived.
Sometime later, deputies found the driver with narcotics, an empty Bud Light can, and a mini “shooter” of alcohol inside the vehicle.
While testing the suspected narcotics, Deputy Nick Huzior immediately began to feel lightheaded and requested EMS. In a body camera video, Huzior can be heard telling his partner he felt extremely lightheaded, shaky, and could not feel his arms or legs.
Knowing that the narcotics being tested could contain fentanyl, Huzior’s partner administered one dose of Narcan and another several minutes later.
Deputy Huzior was rushed to an area hospital where he was later released after treatment.
The driver of the vehicle was identified as 61-year-old George Clemons, of Crescent City. Clemons refused to conduct field sobriety exercises and was charged with DUI, possession of fentanyl, possession of cocaine, possession of marijuana under 20 grams, possession of a legend drug without a prescription, possession of suboxone, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
He was held on a $25,500 bond.
“What happened yesterday is a perfect example of the dangers law enforcement face each and every day from poison on the streets,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “Thankfully, our deputies are well trained and equipped with Narcan which allowed DFC Gaddie to potentially save the life of a fellow deputy.”