/  01.28.2022

Matthew LaFountain, the man who last saw Lauren Smith-Fields, is cooperating with authorities as they continue to investigate her mysterious death. According to his lawyer, Peter Karayiannis, his client worked with the police “for several hours” the day Smith-Fields died and “will continue to cooperate with authorities to help definitively determine what happened.”

LaFountain met up with Smith-Fields on Dec. 12 after meeting the young woman on Bumble. While speaking to authorities, he said they spent their time drinking tequila shots, eating food and watching a movie before Smith-Fields dozed off. He reportedly carried her to bed and slept beside her, waking up the following day (Dec. 13) to find her unconscious. LaFountain called 911 and alerted police of his date’s condition. She was later taken to a hospital where she was pronounced dead. Autopsy results revealed she passed away from “acute intoxication due to the combined effects of fentanyl, promethazine, hydroxyzine and alcohol.”

In the wake of Smith-Field’s death, her family called for an investigation and questioned authorities’ treatment of LaFountain, who they claimed wasn’t interrogated because he is a “nice guy.” With help from Cardi B, Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim eventually launched a probe — a decision they believe took entirely too long to make.

“If he was Black and she was white, a white 23-year-old female is dead with blood and a condom in the bathroom, oh boy, we’d still be at the police station right now,” said Darnell Crosland, the attorney representing Smith-Fields’ family. He added that Detective Cronin, who was initially investigating the young woman’s death, was removed from the case because of his ties to LaFountain.

“Detective Cronin has been placed on some type of administrative leave and he’s under investigation with internal affairs,” Crosland told the Atlanta Black Star. “They’ve been tight-lipped about his involvement, but we’ve been finding out on social media that LaFountain, the individual who was with Lauren, has a huge connection with the police department and his family does as well.”

He believes that the police officer “intentionally or negligently created a cover-up for the responsible party in Lauren’s death.”