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Wisconsin Doctors Go Against Search Warrant, Refuse To Pump Terrance Fleetwood’s Stomach

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Police officers in Milwaukee, Wis., who were sure they saw a suspect swallow a bag of suspected cocaine, were able to get a judge to have the suspect’s stomach pumped. However, doctors refused to do the surgical procedure, which would have attempted to retrieve the contraband by sucking it up from his stomach through his nose.

In the details of the warrant and a criminal complaint later filed against Terrance Fleetwood, officers Ryan DeWitt and Kenton Burtch were on patrol in late February when they reportedly saw the suspect running. He didn't stop when ordered and Burtch said he saw Fleetwood slow down, put his head back and apparently swallow a baggie of cocaine, according to the Journal Sentinel.

Fleetwood was arrested and taken to  a hospital and, according to information in the warrant and criminal complaint, told another officer, Scott Wieting, that he had swallowed "eight dime bags," and that if Wieting would help him dispose of the drugs, he would make Wieting an "all star" by providing information on drugs, guns and homicides.

The warrant for the stomach pumping procedure was signed by Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Ellen Brostrom, but doctors wouldn’t do it without Fleetwood’s consent.

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Police then monitored the suspect for five days, but did not recover any drugs or a plastic bag or see any signs of cocaine in his blood, according to Fleetwood’s attorney.

In March, Fleetwood was charged with possession with intent to distribute cocaine, two counts of obstructing or resisting an officer, and bribery of a public official, on the allegations of offering Wieting information on other crimes in exchange for help hiding the drugs Fleetwood said he'd swallowed.

Reason reports that Fleetwood pled guilty to two counts of obstructing justice, and was sentenced to 18 months, with credit for 118 days.

Sources: Journal Sentinel, Reason