This is a truly sad story about a Great police officer!
Thu, December 4, 2008
By CARLA GARRETT,
WOODSTOCK — Holding back tears, Oxford Police Chief Ron Fraser spoke yesterday about a tough investigation into the accidental death by carbon monoxide poisoning of three members of a local police officer’s family.
Fraser said Richard Hawkins, 41, Jordan Hawkins, 12 and Cassandra Hawkins, 14, died accidentally from carbon-monoxide poisoning. A blockage in a gas fireplace in their Woodstock home was determined to be the source.
“All three victims were overcome and died as a result of circumstances consistent with carbon-monoxide poisoning,” said Fraser during a press conference at OCPS headquarters.
Investigators believe the family was initially overcome sometime Thursday night into Friday morning.
Laurie Hawkins, a well-known Oxford OPP officer, remains in “severe critical condition” Fraser said with tears welling in his eyes.
“Our thoughts and prayers of all members of the police community and the community of Woodstock are with her and her family.”
Police say a pipe in the inner-workings of the basement fireplace had become plugged with carbon. Once ignited, the fireplace filled the home with lethal levels of carbon monoxide.
“There was incomplete combustion of the fuel system,” said Det. Sgt. Paul Hess.
He said the family had been complaining of flu-like symptoms, consistent with CO poisoning, over the last couple weeks.
The investigation, which has spanned over three days, is now winding down.
Hess said he doesn’t expect any unexpected twists.