5 Douglas County Sherriff’s deputies hospitalized after fentanyl exposure

Douglas County Sheriff's Office
Douglas County Sheriff's Office(DCSO)
Published: Oct. 21, 2022 at 5:32 AM PDT
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STATELINE, Nev. (KOLO) - The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office says five deputies were exposed to fentanyl on Thursday.

The deputies were administered naloxone and transported to Barton Hospital in South Lake Tahoe. All five were treated and released in the early hours of Friday morning.

The incident stems from an investigation between DCSO and the FBI into the narcotics trafficking operation of 35-year-old Regina Rojas of Rancho Cordova, and 32-year-old Jessica Thomas of Sacramento.

Regina Rojas
Regina Rojas(Douglas County)
Jessica Thomas
Jessica Thomas(Douglas County)

Deputies with DCSO and the FBI made undercover purchases of fentanyl, methamphetamine, and heroin from the pair in Douglas County.

The deputies were exposed to powder fentanyl during that sale.

DCSO says there was no contamination of the Douglas County Jail or inside Douglas County Court facilities, and they are all open to the public.

DCSO was assisted by the Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District, the East Fork Fire Protection District, the South Lake Tahoe Police Department, the Eldorado County Sheriff’s Office, the Reno DEA Office, the Reno Police Department, the Carson City Sheriff’s Office, and the Carson City Fire Department.

“First, I want to say I am thankful this exposure did not cause harm to any of our officers. This incident is a vivid reminder of the extreme dangers of fentanyl. The risk is not only to the public, who may not be aware that the substance they are handling is fentanyl, but also to law enforcement who is desperately trying to stem the flow of this horrific substance into our communities,” said Sheriff Dan Coverley.

Rojas and Thomas were booked into the DCSO Minden Jail, each charged with three counts trafficking a controlled substance, and one count of sales of a controlled substance, as well as one count of possession of a controlled substance for sale.

Additional Nevada criminal charges are pending, and their bail was set at $250,000 each.