Ramirez said he started using a supplement called Tokkyo Tren after getting the idea from trainers at a Peoria gym where other officers lift weights.
Phoenix Public Safety Manager Jack Harris fired Ramirez several months after the officer’s bodybuilder ex-wife, a fellow Phoenix officer, told internal-affairs investigators that her son discovered syringes at his house.
Ramirez denied the claim. He said needles make him squeamish. Ramirez said his separation and custody battle over his two children played a factor in his case.
At 39, he said, he started taking Tren orally after a couple of violent on-duty scuffles with thugs made him worried for his safety.
“They spend hours working out,” Ramirez said. “They’re stronger and hungrier than me.
“I told Harris, the goal at the end of my shift is for me to go home safe, for my partner to go home safe.”
Ramirez tested positive for nandrolone, though his levels were so low it raised questions as to whether he could be using the injectable illegal drug, as internal-affairs reports suggested.
Internal investigators who reviewed Ramirez’s case wrote in their case summary that the officer failed to provide a reasonable explanation as to how nandrolone turned up in his system.
Ramirez’s case was reviewed by Dr. Don Catlin, a Los Angeles-based pharmacologist and anti-doping authority, at the request of the police-officers union, which represents officers in discipline-review cases.
Catlin – known as a pioneer in sports-drug testing, whose UCLA lab has led the way on professional-baseball and Olympic doping cases – suggested Ramirez was fired despite a report that “contains factual errors about pharmacology, toxicology and laboratory finding concerning nandrolone.” He said Tren can distort test results.
“When this drug is ingested, the body metabolizes (converts) it to two metabolites of nandrolone,” Catlin wrote in an analysis sent to PLEA. “Therefore the ingestion of ‘Tren’ may produce a positive urine test for nandrolone.”