Bridgeport Mayor Announces Internal Investigation Into Smith-Fields’ Death 

In Summary

Lauren Smith-Fields, the 23-year-old Black TikTok influencer, was found dead in her home after a date with a white man she met on the dating app Bumble.

Joe Ganim, mayor of Bridgeport, Connecticut, made the announcement that the police department’s interactions with the family of Lauren Smith-Fields will be investigated by the Office of Internal Affairs. The news comes after the family of the Black TikTok influencer said the detective’s handling of the case was “racially insensitive” and revealed they plan to sue, according to CBS News

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“There is no tolerance for anything less than respect and sensitivity for family members and their loss,” Ganim said in a statement. “To that end, this matter has been referred to the Office of Internal Affairs to conduct a full and fair investigation.” 

The 23-year-old Smith-Fields was found deceased in her home in December of 2021 after a date with a white man she met on the dating app Bumble. According to CBS News, Shantell Fields, Smith-Fields’ mother, said she went to her daughter’s home after she was not able to get in contact with her. 

“When I got there, there was a note on the door saying, ‘If you’re looking for Lauren, call this number,'” Fields said. 

A detective had informed the family that Smith-Fields had been found dead around a day and a half before, but no one got in touch with them, according to CBS News. 

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The medical examiner’s office said Smith-Fields succumbed to “acute intoxication due to the combined effects of fentanyl, promethazine, hydroxyzine, and alcohol” and her death was ruled an accident. 

Ganim said the city will update its death notifications policy. 

“Death notifications should be done in a manner that illustrates dignity for the deceased and respect and compassion for the family,” he stated. “Therefore, I will work with the Chief of Police to make appropriate changes here in Bridgeport to our department’s policies and practices regarding notifying family members of a death. I support and add my voice to the family, community, and elected officials who are calling for state legislation on this issue.” 

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