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Published: 7/15/2011

Traffic stop yields a dead passenger

Officials suspect overdose as cause

BLADE STAFF

LIMA, Ohio -- An Ohio Highway Patrol trooper found a man dead inside a truck during a routine traffic stop early Thursday morning, authorities said.

Joseph Clark, 42, of Spencerville, Ohio, the passenger in the truck, was pronounced dead at the scene by a representative of the Allen County Coroner's Office.

William Tracy, 47, of Delphos, Ohio, was driving the truck.

Troopers stopped the vehicle on Kibby Street in Lima around 1:34 a.m. for a traffic violation.

The trooper said he noticed that Mr. Clark was slumped over and unresponsive.

Mr. Tracy was put into the back of the patrol car.

The trooper tried unsuccessfully to revive Mr. Clark, authorities said.

Authorities said the two men were friends, and no criminal charges relating to Mr. Clark's death have been filed.

Although they are waiting on official autopsy results, authorities say "it's geared more toward a possible drug overdose."

Mr. Tracy was charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated, driving with a suspended license, a seat-belt violation, and having a loud muffler.

The Lucas County Coroner's Office is to perform an autopsy on Mr. Clark.



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