Editor’s Note: This story was updated at 12:15 p.m. on June 12 to include more comments from the Hinsdale Chief of Police.
HINSDALE, N.H. — Two police officers suffered a medical emergency during a search of an impounded vehicle at the Hinsdale Police Department Friday evening.
Hinsdale Police Chief Charles Rataj told the Reformer that there is an ongoing investigation.
Rataj did not release the names of the affected officers, nor reveal his suspicions as to what caused the medical emergencies, but he did credit the supervising officer for taking quick action and making sure no other people were affected.
“And Fire Chief Terry Zavorotny and his rescue squad did a fantastic job,” he said, adding later on Facebook, “My officers mean the world to me; thank you for the treatment and comfort that you provided.”
Rataj said both officers were taken to Brattleboro Memorial Hospital for treatment and have been medically cleared and will be returning to duty for their next scheduled shift. Rataj said he hopes to release more information when the investigation is complete.
On Facebook, Rataj wrote he was not at liberty to reveal what sort of medical emergency his officers suffered from.
“I view protection of my officers’ medical information as a serious matter,” he wrote. “Hence, I am not willing to discuss the actual events that occurred yesterday as anything more then a ‘medical event.’”
Rataj wrote that all safety measures were in place and the two officers were following department protocol when the “medical event” happened.
Rataj also stated the officers of the Hinsdale Police Department have been very active the last month or so stopping cars and making drug arrests.
“Our seizures went from monthly or bi-monthly to about one every four or five days,” wrote Rataj. “I credit this to our new sergeant and our new officers, who are relatively young and new. They want to make a difference and at all levels [as] we know that illicit drugs are one of the most destructive types of crime in our community.”
Rataj noted that because of its training and equipment, the Keene Fire Department decontaminated key parts of the building.
“I cannot thank the responding officers and KFD enough as this was beyond the task of HPD’s staff.”
While the emergency was being dealt with, wrote Rataj, off-duty officers covered the town and helped in decontamination.
“The only danger to the public was that at one point, before our officers made the seizure, the person and the substance that was responsible, were both at large in the community,” wrote Rataj. “There have been frequent overdoses in our corner of New Hampshire/Vermont and people who are responsible for supplying dangerous illicit drugs need to be held accountable, for the safety of us all. ... Getting dangerous drugs off the streets in our community will continue to one of our highest priorities. We will continue stopping and seizing illicit drugs on a frequent basis, with a few minor changes.”
Rataj also noted that services are available to people in need of help kicking an addiction.
“However our job is to hold people accountable by making arrests and we will continue to do so,” he wrote.