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Video: Calif. prisoners save 2 fellow inmates from overdose

A new sheriff’s department pilot program giving inmates access to Narcan appears to be working as intended


AP Photo/Charles Krupa

By Sarah Sinning

LOS ANGELES COUNTY — Two inmates at a Los Angeles County jail are alive today thanks to a pilot program implemented by the sheriff’s department and the quick thinking of fellow prisoners.

According to a statement from the L.A. County Sheriff’s Department, which released footage of the May 26 incident, deputies working at North County Correctional Facility were alerted to two inmates in medical distress.

“When Deputies arrived,” the statement explains, “the two unconscious inmates had just received a dose of Narcan, administered by fellow inmates. Minutes later, a third inmate began to complain of dizziness. All three inmates were treated by medical staff on scene and subsequently transported to a local hospital for further treatment. Hours later, they returned to their housing facility.”

The inmates were able to access the opioid overdose medication due to a recently implemented program.

“With opioid overdoses on the rise,” the release continues, “the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department wants to ensure that inmate safety is of utmost priority. Currently, two Narcan doses are being distributed in each of the dorms at NCCF.”

Inmates watch an instructional video on how to administer it during their orientation program.

The sheriff’s department plans to expand the program to other facilities if it “continues to save lives.”