- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 11, 2017

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Authorities have searched the home of the former head of the Wisconsin Democratic Party after a woman died from a drug overdose.

A search warrant filed this week says 42-year-old Jason Sidener of Fitchburg told police he woke up Sept. 12 to find a 30-year-old woman “breathing really weird.” He took her to the hospital, suspecting heroin use, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.

Sidener hasn’t been arrested or charged, but his home and vehicle were searched as part of a death investigation. An inventory shows authorities found crack cocaine, needles and other drug paraphernalia. Sidner’s attorney didn’t immediately return messages from The Associated Press on Wednesday.

Fitchburg police Lt. Don Bomkamp said authorities sent evidence to the state crime lab for testing and are still collecting evidence from a cellphone.

“We’d like to know where the drugs came from,” Bomkamp said.

Sidener started working as executive director of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin in January, but court documents show he was recently fired for performance issues. Democratic Party spokeswoman Melanie Conklin released a statement saying the news is heartbreaking and the party is cooperating with police.

She said Sidener took a family and medical leave in August and returned to work briefly in September before departing, “citing that it would be the best thing for his health and that ‘the road to full recovery would be longer than expected.’”

Toxicology tests show Monique Allen of Madison died of a drug overdose and had multiple drugs, including heroin, fentanyl, a fentanyl analog and cocaine in her system.

According to the search warrant affidavit, Sidener told police he had picked up Allen at a motel the night of Sept. 11 and brought her home. He said they used marijuana and she was fine when he fell asleep. He told police he woke up at 5 a.m. and her body “was like a pile of mush.”

Text messages between Sidener and Allen from Sept. 9 to Sept. 11 show he wrote that he was doing the “hard stuff,” which police say meant heroin or cocaine, and that Allen said it would be fun to do that with him.


Information from: Wisconsin State Journal, https://www.madison.com/wsj

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