Medical examiner: Lauren Smith-Fields died from mixture of alcohol and drugs
On Monday evening, the state medical examiner revealed that Lauren Smith-Fields died from a deadly combination of fentanyl and alcohol.
The 23-year-old woman died two weeks before Christmas after a meeting with an older man arranged through a dating app.
Smith-Fields' family has been critical of the Bridgeport Police Department's handling of the case and announced plans to file a lawsuit. A large protest rally on the family's behalf was held Sunday.
Police have maintained that they could not comment until the autopsy was released.
Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim says the Internal Affairs Division is now investigating how the family was treated.
Ganim released a statement earlier on Monday saying sensitivity and care is of utmost importance when working with the family of a victim.
Read Ganim's statement below:
"I would like to restate the city's condolences to the family and friends of Lauren Smith-Fields, and to the many caring individuals who have reached out seeking answers for Lauren. I recognize that the family and the community is experiencing a lot of pain because of the loss of a young woman in addition to unanswered questions and concerns about the way the matter has been handled.
First, sensitivity and care is of utmost importance when working with the family of a victim. There is no tolerance for anything less than respect and sensitivity for family members and their loss. To that end, this matter has been referred to the Office of Internal Affairs to conduct a full and fair investigation.
Second, I share concerns echoed by many about the amount of time and manner a family is informed of a loss. Death notifications should be done in a manner that illustrates dignity for the deceased and respect and compassion for the family. Therefore, I will work with the Chief of Police to make appropriate changes here in Bridgeport now for our department's policies and practices regarding notifying family members of a death. I support and add my voice to the family, community, and elected officials who are calling for state legislation on this issue.
Finally, I have contacted the State Medical Examiner to request assistance in expediting this matter so that the investigation can proceed, and detectives may provide a comprehensive report to the family and parents of Lauren Smith-Fields.
I offer my support in bringing closure to the family during this terrible tragedy."