Courtney Bannick Tavares police officer moments from overdose death after exposure to fentanyl during traffic stop. Fellow police officer quick thinking saves her life.
A Florida police officer was on the brink of death, after being exposed to fentanyl during a routine traffic stop on Tuesday. It was only quick thinking by her partner that saved her life after she was given three doses of Narcan, an antidote used to reverse the shock of opioid poisoning.
Video captured the moment Tavares Officer Courtney Bannick was administered the opioid overdose-reversing drug as she lay motionless on the side of a road just after midnight.
Bannick found narcotics — which police believe contained the deadly drug — in a rolled-up dollar bill inside the vehicle she and the other officers pulled over. Shortly after, she began struggling to breathe.
Another officer at the scene heard her choking and breathless over her radio and walked over. He found her drifting ‘in and out of consciousness and needing immediate medical attention,’ the Tavares Police Department said in a release obtained by Click Orlando.
That officer and two others laid Bannick on the ground and quickly administered Narcan. She was brought back and was talking before she again lost consciousness and appeared to have stopped breathing, the bodycam footage released by the department shows.
‘She was completely lifeless. She looks deceased in these videos,’ Tavares police Detective Courtney Sullivan told Fox 35 Orlando. ‘So she’s very thankful today.’
In total, the cops gave Bannick three doses of Narcan before an ambulance arrived and took her to an area hospital. The officer is expected to make a full recovery.
Police believe Bannick, who was wearing gloves when handling the narcotics, may have been exposed due to the wind blowing the drugs into her system. The officers planned to test the substance at the station and not at the scene because it was so windy.
‘I have done this 100 times before the same way. It only takes one time and a minimal amount,’ Bannick said. ‘I’m thankful I wasn’t alone and had immediate help.’
She requested that the alarming video be released in order to spread awareness of the dangers of fentanyl.
‘If the other officers weren’t there, there’s a very high chance and probability that today would be different and that we would be wearing our thin blue line — the straps that go over our badges,’ Sullivan said, referring to protocol when an officer dies in the line of duty.
The individuals who were pulled over by the officers and allegedly had the drugs in their possession are facing possible felony charges. Their names have not been released because they haven’t been charged yet, the department said.