Ecstasy suspected in young Maple Ridge woman’s death

21-year-old found unresponsive after a night of partying, dies in hospital two days later.

A young Maple Ridge woman died in hospital Tuesday after taking an illegal drug police believe was ecstasy at a weekend party.

Ridge Meadows RCMP’s Serious Crimes Unit and the B.C. Coroner’s Service are investigating the 21-year-old’s death.

Paramedics, police and the Maple Ridge fire department were called to an apartment early Sunday after the woman was found unresponsive.

She was rushed to hospital, but passed away two days later.

Police allege the woman took MDMA, also known as ecstasy, during a night of drinking and partying.

“This is a very sad case.” said Supt. Dave Walsh.  “Initial information indicates the consumption of alcoholic beverages and illicit drugs may have played a prominent role in the death of this young woman. Police are working closely with health care professionals and the coroner on determining what caused this death.”

It has police issuing another warning to young adults and teens to steer clear of ecstasy.

“Any illicit drug is manufactured in back-room labs with no quality control, so the user has no idea what they are getting,” said Walsh.

“Ecstasy and methamphetamine are almost identical in chemical composition, are made with almost all of the same chemicals and both are extremely dangerous.”

The young woman’s death has the mother of a teen who died from a similar overdose in 2008 calling for mandatory drug education and harm reduction programs.

“How many more youth have to die before we, as a community, come to the harsh reality that what we are doing isn’t working,” said Julie Raymond.

Her daughter Shannon died on July 26, 2008 after mixing ecstasy with alcohol.

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