Costa Mesa Police Chief Steve Staveley is questioning conclusions that Huy Pham, a maintenance worker who committed suicide by jumping off the Costa Mesa City Hall, had cocaine in his blood the day he died, according to a column in the Orange County Register by Barbara Venezia.
From Venezia’s column:
Costa Mesa Police Chief Steve Staveley said, “I saw the coroner’s report, and I saw no indication of cocaine, but I’m not a physician.”
He also went on to caution anyone reading the report that there could be other contributing factors and that “trace amounts” could be a result of other drugs, but again he stressed he’s not a pharmacist or a physician.
I delivered my quotes to the newspaper, but something kept nagging at me. Why wasn’t the chief buying the whole cocaine thing?
So I called him early Friday morning.
“Barbara, I’m looking at the report right now. The drug found was something called Benzoylecgonine. I’m no doctor, but look at what it says on Wikipedia. Someone needs to get this information out for this man’s family,” Staveley said.
— NORBERTO SANTANA JR.
Since you've made it this far,
You are obviously connected to your community and value good journalism. As an independent and local nonprofit, our news is accessible to all, regardless of what they can afford. Our newsroom centers on Orange County’s civic and cultural life, not ad-driven clickbait. Our reporters hold powerful interests accountable to protect your quality of life. But it’s not free to produce. It depends on donors like you.
Join the conversation: In lieu of comments, we encourage readers to engage with us across a variety of mediums. Join our Facebook discussion. Message us via our website or staff page. Send us a secure tip. Share your thoughts in a community opinion piece.