A 35-year-old Big Pine Key man was arrested Monday after police said he ran from deputies as he was being taken to the hospital in an ambulance.

The ambulance had stopped on the way and Ira Emil Kawzinsky took a leap and took off, according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

Kawzinsky was later arrested on charges of violating probation, resisting arrest, possession of heroin and possession of drug paraphernalia.

He remained at the Stock Island Detention Center on Tuesday, locked up without bond.

At 5:22 p.m. Monday, deputies were called to a home in the 1400 block of Merelyn Lane on Big Pine Key.

The person who called said Kawzinsky had discovered he had a warrant for his arrest and was acting erratically, said sheriff’s office spokesman Adam Linhardt.

Kawzinsky had locked himself in his bedroom and would not let in deputies, so they kicked in the door, according to the arrest report.

Deputies said they found Kawzinsky there, along with a syringe, a spoon and a substance that tested positive for heroin.

“Kawzinsky was described as incoherent, but responsive,” Linhardt said.

Once inside the back of a patrol car, Kawzinsky began convulsing, and deputies took him out of the car and used the opioid-blocking drug Narcan, which can help stop an opioid overdose, on him.

Monroe County Fire Rescue paramedics arrived and took over.

Kawzinsky ended up in an ambulance, which headed toward Lower Keys Medical Center on Stock Island with deputies following.

But the ambulance stopped suddenly at Mile Marker 30 in the center turn lane.

It stopped because Kawzinsky was about to open the door, Linhardt said.

The rear door opened and Kawzinsky jumped out and fled near Loma Lane, Linhardt said.

Deputies set up a perimeter.

U.S. Border Patrol agents — a K9 Unit among them — showed up to help along with troopers from the Florida Highway Patrol and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Police searched for two hours before finding Kawzinsky, the report stated.

Kawzinsky was taken to the hospital — this time in the back of a patrol car. He told deputies he had ingested four bags of heroin before they arrived at the house.

“He added that perhaps he blacked out during the incident,” Linhardt said.

Kawzinsky was medically cleared at the hospital and later booked into jail.

Gwen Filosa covers Key West and the Lower Florida Keys for FLKeysNews.com and the Miami Herald and lives in Key West. She was part of the staff at the New Orleans Times-Picayune that in 2005 won two Pulitzer Prizes for coverage of Hurricane Katrina. She graduated from Indiana University.

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