Guards save inmate who overdosed at Lake County jail

  • Mark Gaines

    Mark Gaines

  • David Juarez

    David Juarez

  • Daniel Pennington

    Daniel Pennington

Updated 6/8/2021 6:02 PM

Three correctional officers at the Lake County jail saved the life of a man who was overdosing on drugs, the sheriff's office announced Tuesday.

On the night of June 2, officers David Juarez and Daniel Pennington were conducting rounds in the section for inmates who are assigned to periodic imprisonment and are able to leave the jail occasionally to go to work or an appointment.


They discovered that an inmate who had recently returned to jail from a work-related absence had collapsed while taking a shower. The man was unresponsive and had very shallow breathing. The officers concluded he was suffering from a drug overdose and called for assistance, Lt. Christopher Covelli said.

Correctional officer Mark Gaines rushed to the showers with Naloxone, a medicine that rapidly reverses an opioid overdose. Soon after he was given a dose of Naloxone, the man regained consciousness and was hospitalized for further evaluation.

Investigators believe the man ingested opioids just before returning to jail.

"It is always a top priority to treat those in our custody with dignity and respect," Lake County Sheriff John Idleburg said. "The quick lifesaving actions by Correctional Officers Juarez, Pennington, and Gaines perfectly highlight this philosophy, and I am extremely proud of them for saving the life of an inmate."

Covelli said whether the man who overdosed will have his periodic imprisonment privileges revoked will be up to a Lake County judge.

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