Syringes and a brown substance that may be heroin were found Monday in the hotel room where officers responded to a possible drug overdose.


Officers responding to the report of a possible drug overdose in an Aspen hotel room on New Year’s Eve found a man who was unresponsive and later pronounced dead, and syringes and a brown substance that may be heroin, a detective said Wednesday.

Police identified the man who was found at the Hotel Jerome as Jonathan Hunter Irons, 26, of Santa Monica, Calif.

Officers responded to the hotel around 8:45 p.m. on Monday, and witnesses said Irons was unconscious but breathing, according to an Aspen Police Department press release.

In the room were Irons and another man, also in his mid-20s, who was “awake but in an altered state of consciousness [and] also in distress,” the release says.

Irons was not breathing and had no pulse, and officers immediately began CPR. A witness in the room said Irons had suffered a possible drug overdose, and officers administered Narcan, an antidote for an opioid overdose. Ambulance crews then took over, and both men were transported to Aspen Valley Hospital, where Irons was pronounced dead.

Police are continuing to investigate Irons’ death, the release says.

Asked if police will pursue the person who sold Irons the heroin, if tests confirm that is what the brown substance is, Detective Ritchie Zah said it “would certainly be on our list of things to do.

“It’s too early to rule anything out at this point, but if it comes to that, then of course we will,” he said of a potential investigation into the source. “It’s still pretty early.”

The syringes and brown substance were to be shipped to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. The results will likely take a few months, he said.

“Though the outcome was not as desired, Aspen PD wishes to thank the teams at Aspen Ambulance and the Aspen Fire Department for their hard work and empathy on scene,” the press release says.