08/21/2006

La. officer mysteriously dies on duty

The Associated Press   

SHREVEPORT, La.- A 30-year-old police officer described as in excellent condition died Saturday evening in his patrol car after checking up on an elderly aunt.

While authorities said preliminary reports suggest the death was health-related, the Shreveport Police Department will investigate the death, spokeswoman Kacee Hargrave said.

The officer, Adam Wilson of Shreveport, had stopped to check on his elderly aunt, Shreveport Fire Department spokesman Brian Crawford said.

He spent less than 10 minutes in her air-conditioned home, then went to his patrol car, police said. When neighbors realized that the car had been there for nearly half an hour, they went to check and found him unresponsive and without a pulse, police said.

A rescue crew tried to revive him, but was dead on arrival at Willis Knighton Hospital, a police statement said. It was 5:17; his shift had begun at 3 p.m.

Wilson was in excellent shape — a former Marine who ran regularly and was a leading physical training recruit at the Shreveport Regional Police Academy, the police statement said.

Wilson did not have a history of medical problems and was not taking medication, Crawford said.

"The public safety community of Shreveport is both shocked and saddened by the loss of this officer and will be closing ranks collectively behind the family to support them in their time of need," Crawford said on behalf of the Fire Department.

The investigation into Wilson's death could include examining his physical exertion while on duty in the days leading up to his death.

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