Thursday, October 4, 2007

Firefighter's autopsies show cocaine and alcohol

One of two Boston firefighters who died fighting a fire in a Chinese restaurant in late August was legally intoxicated at the time, and the other had cocaine in his system, two officials said yesterday.

A source who was briefed by a person with knowledge of the autopsies of Paul J. Cahill and Warren J. Payne told the Globe that one firefighter had a blood-alcohol level higher than .08, the level at which someone is too drunk to drive legally in Massachusetts. The other firefighter had traces of cocaine in his system, the source said.

A government official said Cahill registered a blood-alcohol level of .27, and Payne had cocaine in his system.

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