Taylor Cunningham smuggles heroin into Wisconsin jail, causes three overdoses

Taylor Cunningham's mugshot from passing bad checks last summer.

Taylor Cunningham's mugshot from passing bad checks last summer.

When Taylor Cunningham was pulled over by Columbia County sheriff's deputies in Portage, Wisconsin, they ran her name and found out she was wanted in Ramsey County. Apparently, the St. Paul resident was charged with passing a bad check. They hauled her in.

It wouldn't have been a huge deal -- if only Cunningham hadn't decided to get generous with a stash of heroin cops say she smuggled into the jail.


According to St. Paul police, Cunningham had been picked up over the summer for trying to use a check that wasn't in her name. She skipped her court date and a warrant was issued for her arrest.

After she got snagged in Portage, she was initially cooling her heels in a holding cell alone. Once it became clear they might need to hang on to her long enough for Minnesota law enforcement to come get her, Cunningham was sent to the general population part of the jail.

According to the criminal complaint, that's where she met her three new besties, with whom she decided to share a little secret -- she'd managed to smuggle in a baggy of heroin. In her vagina.

The four started snorting the stash. It didn't take long for other inmates to start tattling on the women, and as officers were preparing to enter the cell, one of the inmates collapsed in her bed unconscious. Her face and lips turned blue. The other two women began vomiting all over the cell. Cunningham, meanwhile, was fine.

Two of the women were taken to a local hospital, the third was treated by a jail nurse. Lieutenant Detective Roger Brandner says he believes Cunningham was able to flush the remaining evidence down a toilet while the jail personnel were occupied with the other three.

In subsequent interviews, the three women told Brandner that they had never tried heroin before. Cunningham admitted that she was a daily user.

"The girl who actually passed out, her lips and face were purple. I believe she was depleted of oxygen," says Brandner. "If someone hadn't noticed her -- I think she would have died."

The real kick in the pants? While Cunningham was busy handing out candy, word arrived from Minnesota that it was too big a logistical hassle to come get her. Ramsey County dropped the warrant.

Now, Cunningham is stuck in Wisconsin and facing felony charges of delivering heroin in a jail. Her first appearance is scheduled for tomorrow.