Two men who died of drug overdoses after leaving Manhattan gay bars last spring died by homicide, according to findings from New York City’s chief medical examiner.
Julio Ramirez, a social worker from Queens, died from the effects of a concoction that included fentanyl, heroin, cocaine, lidocaine and ethanol, the medical examiner’s office said Friday. He was found dead in the back of a taxi cab in April shortly after leaving a gay bar in Hell’s Kitchen. Ramirez was 25.
A month later, John Umberger, a 33-year-old consultant from Washington, D.C., died after leaving another gay bar in Hell’s Kitchen. The medical examiner said Umberger died from the effects of a similar concoction that did not include heroin.
Both men had their bank accounts drained. The medical examiner determined their deaths to have occurred during drug-facilitated thefts.
The deaths of the two men heightened anxieties within the city’s gay community amid a monkeypox outbreak last year that disproportionately affected men who have sex with men.
Months after Ramirez and Umberger overdosed, the NYPD said in November they were investigating a series of robberies and assaults in Hell’s Kitchen that could potentially be linked to their deaths.