REGO PARK, Queens - Eight NYPD officers were hospitalized after breathing in possible drug fumes inside an apartment in Queens early Friday morning.
The incident happened on Saunders Street in Rego Park around 1 a.m.
The officers had responded to a noise complaint at the fifth-floor apartment, but the 39-year-old resident apparently refused to open the door.
Authorities say they were eventually able to convince him to open up, and they immediately encountered the fumes of burning heroin inside the room.
It is unclear if the resident was smoking the heroin or burning it in an effort to destroy it. Upon encountering the fumes, the officers became light headed, dizzy and nauseous.
One sergeant and seven officers were taken to the hospital to be checked out as a precaution. They were all treated for exposure to an unknown substance and released.
The resident reportedly refused to leave the room and barricaded himself. Emergency Service Unit officers finally talked out the man, who reportedly had to be given an anti-overdose medication.
The suspect was taken to Elmhurst General Hospital for a psychiatric evaluation and was initially being treated as an emotionally disturbed person, but a search of the apartment revealed a large amount of cash. That prompted authorities to shift to a narcotics investigation.
Charges are pending against the man, who had reportedly only lived in the apartment for a few days.
Forensics investigators will determine exactly what was in the apartment, but at this point, it appears to be heroin and fentanyl.