Bridgeport PD opens criminal investigation into Lauren Smith-Fields’ death

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The Bridgeport Police Department has opened a criminal investigation into the death of a 23-year-old woman who was found dead in her home after an online date last month.

Lauren Smith-Fields’ death was ruled an accidental overdose, but now the circumstances of what caused it are under criminal investigation.

The Bridgeport Police Department’s announcement of the inquest comes a day after the medical examiner released Smith-Fields’ cause of death.

The death was ruled an accidental overdose of fentanyl combined with prescription drugs and alcohol.

“We don’t think she took those drugs voluntarily, we don’t think if she took those drugs she knew what she was taking. We don’t think she took them voluntarily at all,” said said family representative Alexis Farrow.

Smith-Fields’ family representative says they don’t feel the Bridgeport Police Department has handled the case properly since his death on Dec. 12.

The family representative says it took weeks to collect evidence and they were not informed of his death until two days later.

“Of course, we care about Lauren’s death, but we don’t want the narrative to change, and we don’t want the focus to change. At the end of the day, no matter how she died, she didn’t have not been properly investigated and it has not been handled properly,” Farrow said.

The Bridgeport Police Department said it had to wait for the medical examiner’s report on the cause and circumstances of death before launching an investigation.

State Senator Dennis Bradley says he plans to bring in a bill honoring Smith-Fields, which would require police to notify immediate family members of the death of a loved one within 24 hours.
The family set up a GoFundMe to help fund a private investigator.

Police Chief Rebeca Garcia released a statement:

“The Bridgeport Police Department continues to treat the untimely death of Lauren Smith-Fields as an active investigation as we now refocus our attention and efforts on the factors that led to her untimely death. We have engaged several partners to help us with this part of the investigation. Once again, we offer our deepest condolences to the friends and family of Lauren Smith-Fields and ask anyone with information to please contact 203 576-ADVICE.”

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