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Arizona sheriff killed in rollover crash was legally drunk, autopsy report shows

Cochise County

Sheriff Larry Dever

A northern Arizona sheriff who died after losing control of his pickup truck last month and rolling it, was legally drunk and had a blood-alcohol level of .291, more than three times the state's legal limit, an autopsy report released Monday said.


Cochise County Sheriff Larry Dever was driving along a gravel road near Williams, Ariz., on Sept. 18 to meet family members for a camping and hunting trip when the accident occurred, NBC station KVOA reported. Investigators said Dever was going 62 mph on the unmarked Forest Service road.

The autopsy report also showed that Dever was not wearing his seat belt, and authorities say there was beer and liquor in his truck.

On Friday, Cochise County authorities said Dever had alcohol in his system, but the exact blood-alcohol content wasn't released until Monday.

Dever was a 34-year veteran of Cochise County law enforcement. He was elected as sheriff in 1996.

On Friday, the Cochise County Sheriff's Office released a statement saying the Dever family "expressed great sorrow at the findings," according to a report on the Arizona Republic's website. The statement said Dever was "reeling from the stress and pressure" of the recent loss of his 86-year-old mother, and the scheduled deployment of one of his six sons to Afghanistan.

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