Drug overdose suspected in death of woman found in Mill Park

January 06, 2012
Santa Paula Police Department

Santa Paula Police are investigating an unidentified female found dead Wednesday afternoon in Mill Park, an incident they suspect stemmed from a drug overdose.

According to Detective Sergeant Ishmael Cordero the SPPD was notified January 4 shortly after 3 p.m. that a woman was “passed out” in the woman’s restroom at the park, located on the 700 block of Santa Paula/Ojai Road-Highway 150. 

“It appears to be an overdose” that killed the yet to be identified woman. “We don’t know who she is... she didn’t have any identification,” and the Medical Examiner will try to determine who the woman, appearing to be in her mid-30s, is.

Cordero said that upon the arrival of SPPD officers, Santa Paula Fire EMTs and ambulance paramedics it was determined the woman could have been in the restroom about a half-hour before the 911 call was placed. “Paramedics and officers spent quite a bit of time trying to revive her” before they officially declared the woman dead. 

It was observed the woman had “recent marks” indicating drug injections. “She was an unkempt looking Latina, a transient type” with tattoos, who Cordero said was wearing pink pants, a patterned white blouse and tennis shoes when she was discovered.

Witnesses said the woman had been at the park with two companions, an “older” male and another female, for about an hour before “a female called 911 and said there was a female passed out in Mill Park... she was supposedly with these other people, possibly in a blue compact vehicle.... We would like to get more information from those people.”

Cordero said although the person who used a payphone outside a grocery store on 12th and High streets is unknown, there is a suspicion it might have been the female seen earlier with the dead woman. “They did call, which is okay, but if they had taken appropriate actions earlier this person would still be alive. It’s very common to dump those that overdose on the steps of the Emergency Room or try to revive them themselves.” 

Cordero said, “It’s hard to say if they tried to help her.... And we don’t know if it was her companions that called or someone who just went into the restroom to use it and found her, then called anonymously” from the payphone. 

The body was not removed until about 7:30 p.m. to allow for a complete investigation of the scene by the SPPD and the Medical Examiner, who will be conducting an autopsy to determine the cause of death. Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Ken Clark at the SPPD, 805-525-4474.

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