Homicide investigators with the Sheriff’s Department are looking into the death of a 38-year-old Valencia woman who lived in the Arbor Park condominium complex.
The woman died of an apparent opiate overdose of prescription pills, according to sheriff’s officials who responded to the residence Tuesday around 10 a.m. The woman was found by her father in her McBean Parkway home.
The incident is being investigated as a homicide because officials have not yet determined whether a crime was committed in respect to how the woman attained the opiates that killed her.
“Efforts are being made to determine who supplied her with the drugs,” according to Sgt. Bob Wachsmuth of the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station. “If we can determine that the (person supplying the drugs) committed a criminal offense, then we can charge them with the homicide.”
Speaking generally, Wachsmuth said as heroin usage grows in the Santa Clarita Valley, so does the number of prescription pill-related incidents, because users will often look to prescription opiates as a substitute.
However, it’s too early to say whether the woman, whose identity has not yet been released, obtained the drugs illegally.
The incident brings the number of opiate-related deaths in the Santa Clarita Valley to 12 so far this year, but there also are a half-dozen cases of suspected opiate-related overdoses awaiting toxicology reports from the Los Angeles County Department of Coroner, Wachsmuth said.