Another death linked to ketamine involves man high on LSD

Problem Solvers

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KDVR) — An El Paso County coroner’s report said “toxic effects” of ketamine were to blame for the death of a 26-year-old man who was high on LSD when medics sedated him in September 2020.

Several months later, the coroner’s office amended the autopsy report to indicate the deceased victim, Hunter Barr, had also consumed cough suppressants and LSD prior to passing away.

Barr’s father told the Problem Solvers that the autopsy had been amended after his attorney sent a letter to the city, warning of a possible lawsuit.

“Based on the case history and autopsy findings, it is my opinion that Hunter Davis Barr, a 26-year-old White male, died as a result of toxic effects of ketamine in the setting of dextromethorphan and lysergic acid diethylamide intoxication,” the report, amended in March 2021 and signed by Dr. Travis Danielsen, said.

Danielsen referred to the incident as an accident.

In the medical documents obtained by the Problem Solvers, the coroner said Barr had “taken LSD and was acting erratically at his parent’s residence. Law enforcement and emergency medical services were called to the residence.”

Body camera footage shows Barr was slurring his words when officers handcuffed him on the ground. Barr was face down.

According to the autopsy report, Barr was transported to the hospital and according to his medical records, “was febrile, appeared agitated, demonstrated hypertension, tachycardia, became stiff, and was diaphoretic, consistent with so-called ‘serotonin syndrome.’” The report said he also developed “hypotension and cardiac arrest.” Barr could not be resuscitated with CPR and other life-saving measures, and he died.

While many emergency physicians call ketamine a safe and important tool for the safety of medical personnel and the patients, it has become a controversial sedative in recent months after the FOX31 Problem Solvers revealed three other cases in which it was used under controversial incidents, including the case of Elijah McClain.

Next week, a bill aimed at reforming how the state regulates this drug for use on agitated patients is headed to the House Judiciary Committee for a debate.

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