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Westlake businessman had THC in system when attacking people at random on I-90, being shot by sheriff’s deputy

October 1, 2018

Westlake businessman had THC in system when attacking people at random on I-90, being shot by sheriff’s deputy

CLEVELAND, Ohio — A Westlake businessman had THC in his system when he attacked motorists at random on the side of Interstate 90 and repeatedly charged at a Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s deputy until the deputy fatally shot him. 

Brett Luengo, the 33-year-old CEO of the construction management company ConstructAbility, had no other illegal chemicals in his system, according to medical examiner records reviewed by cleveland.com. THC is the psychoactive element found in marijuana.

Luengo also had caffeine and cotinine, which typically shows up after smoking or being exposed to tobacco smoke, in his system, according to a toxicology report.

The toxicology report sheds light on the case after speculation regarding Luengo’s drug use surfaced after cleveland.com obtained a video of the shooting and Luengo’s family and friends described his behavior as out-of-character.

Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Sgt. Kevin Campbell used a stun gun on him several times, including once that knocked Luengo to the ground. Luengo ripped the stun-gun prongs out of his body and continued charging at Campbell, who backed up, shouted orders at Luengo and shot him once in the chest on the side of the highway.

The case is still being investigated by Cleveland police department’s use-of-deadly-force team, which includes homicide detectives.

The May 24 incident involving Luengo, a tennis star at Westlake High School and newlywed, began earlier that day when he called Westlake police and told them he was being chased by three witches who were trying to kill him.

He also told the dispatchers that he was a drug dealer, that he was gay and that he was going to commit suicide.

His parents later told police that Luengo has been suicidal in the past and was possibly homicidal, the report says.

As Westlake police went to his parents’ house, they also tried to locate him by tracking his cellphone as he sped on Interstate 90 eastbound.

Luengo, who has no known prior criminal history other than a 2016 misdemeanor conviction for failing to comply with a police officer, crashed his car near the West Boulevard exit and two people pulled off on the side of the road to help him, according to two witnesses.

Luengo attacked a man who stopped to help him.

He then grabbed another driver, a woman who stopped to help, by the throat and pulled her out of her car. The man grabbed a wrench from his work truck and hit Luengo on the head as Luengo tried to attack him, causing a gash. A third man stopped when he saw Luengo bleeding on the side of the road.

Luengo also tried to attack him, the witnesses said. Luengo walked up the side of the highway and choked a child in the backseat and tried to grab another, getting blood on both kids.

As he attacked the people on the side of the highway, he shouted that he was high on PCP and that he molested children, witnesses said. No PCP was found in Luengo’s system, according to the medical examiner records.

Campbell showed up and tried to get Luengo to surrender peacefully. Two witnesses said Luengo told Campbell to shoot him.

Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish previously called Campbell’s handling of the incident “appropriate.”

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