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Police: Maryland sergeant charged in drug theft kills self

HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP) — Authorities in Maryland say a Hagerstown police sergeant set to appear in court next week on charges of drug theft has killed himself.

Hagerstown Police Chief Paul Kifer confirmed the self-inflicted death of 45-year-old Sgt. Christopher Barnett to The Herald-Mail on Thursday. Kifer says he doesn’t have many details on Barnett’s death, but considers it “another tragedy of the opioid crisis.”

Court records say Barnett was charged in February with stealing prescription opioids from a disabled woman in January after she and a friend caught him on video.

The woman noticed her pills missing after Barnett questioned her in an unrelated case. She later confronted him and filmed Barnett giving her replacement pills and $35 in hush money. The video was given to police, and Barnett was suspended without pay.

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Information from: The Herald-Mail of Hagerstown, Md., http://www.herald-mail.com

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