A Toronto homicide detective with 32 years of police experience has resigned after his opioid addiction came to light: he admitted to stealing opioids from evidence locker in order to feed his addiction.
Although there is an ongoing investigation to see how this impacted his previous cases, Paul Worden is not under criminal investigation.
Statements explain that Worden had an addiction to prescription painkillers for ongoing and recurring physical pain, as well as an on-duty injury.
He may have done it “to mask some of the trauma he had suffered and witnessed as a police officer. I stood beside him on some of those cases so I know how deep that trauma goes and how significant it is.”
– Dave Perry, former Toronto homicide investigator
Watch the full report from Global News here, where Bellwood’s Manager of Inpatient Programs, Kathryn Decker, O.T., provides insight into this issue:
Peter Brauti, Worden’s lawyer, said Toronto police treating the case as a mental health issue will in turn make for a good precedent for everyone, whether they are a first responder or not.
Worden is not the only police officer to turn to addiction during the line of duty. In 2017, Toronto police Const. Michael Thompson overdosed on fentanyl. At the time, he was working undercover with the Toronto police drug squad.
Earlier in February 2021, a former Halton police officer issued an unprecedented apology to more than 1,000 of his former colleagues. He pleaded guilty in 2017 to stealing opioids from his service’s drug vault while addicted to prescription painkillers.
EHN Canada Can Help You
If you would like to learn more about the addiction and mental health treatment programs provided by EHN Canada, enroll yourself in one of our programs, or refer someone else, please call us at one of the numbers below. Our phone lines are open 24/7—so you can call us anytime.
- 1-800-387-6198 for Bellwood Health Services in Toronto, ON
- 1-587-350-6818 for EHN Sandstone, in Calgary, AB
- 1-800-683-0111 for Edgewood Treatment Centre in Nanaimo, BC
- 1-888-488-2611 for Clinique Nouveau Depart in Montreal, QC
- 1-866-860-8302 for virtual outpatient support, available wherever you are