Burglary investigation sends 4 deputies and citizen to hospital

HIGHGROVE — Four deputies and a citizen were hospitalized in unknown condition after becoming exposed to some type of chemical agent during a suspected burglary investigation Saturday evening, Dec. 22. The incident, which caused a HazMat and special team response, happened in the 20300 block of Canaan Circle in Highgrove.


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Saturday night’s incident began about 5:45 p.m., when Riverside County sheriff’s deputies responded to reports of a possible burglary in progress, Riverside Sheriff’s spokesperson Deputy Robyn Flores later explained.

Five people, including four deputies were hospitalized after they were exposed to an unknown airborne chemical agent during a burglary investigation. Loudlabs News photo

While investigating the reported burglary, deputies discovered a broken window in the rear of the home and climbed through the window to investigate. At some point during their investigation, the deputies were “overcome by an unknown airborne chemical,” said Flores.

Based on the circumstances, officials at the scene requested a HazMat and special team response and Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire, along with other emergency personnel, soon flooded into the area with specialized equipment.

AMR treated the four deputies and citizen at the scene and eventually transported all five victims to area hospitals for treatment of the airborne chemical agent that had overcome them. Their current conditions were not known as of this report.

Citing their ongoing investigation, sheriff’s officials have released no additional details regarding the incident or their investigation. Officials have also not specified what type of chemical agent was believed to have sickened the five who were overcome and later hospitalized.

This is a developing story that will be updated as new information is available.

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Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 47, moved last year to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, The Valley Chronicle, and Anza Valley Outlook; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 28 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 15 – but soon to be 16 – grandchildren.

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