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34-Year-Old St. Louis Area FBI Agent Dies Unexpectedly

The FBI says Special Agent Jarrod M. Petrelli led “Operation Scorpion King” in dismantling a St. Louis area heroin trafficking ring.

According to the St. Louis division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Special Agent Jarrod M. Petrelli passed away unexpectedly while working on Dec. 6. He died just three days before his 35th birthday of natural causes, according to the FBI. Petrelli was reportedly assigned to the St. Louis area after joining the FBI in 2008. He had lived here with his family since 2009 and leaves behind a wife and three young daughters.

The FBI stated in a news release that the special agent led “Operation Scorpion King” in dismantling a St. Louis area heroin trafficking ring. 

Following is the news release issued by the FBI Monday afternoon.

FBI Special Agent (SA) Jarrod M. Petrelli was attending a law enforcement conference on gangs in Boca Raton, Florida on December 6, 2012 when he unex­pectedly passed away. He was three days shy of his 35th birthday.

SA Petrelli joined the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in August 2008 and was assigned to the St. Louis Division. During the past four years, he dedicated his entire time to fighting violent gangs. Acting Special Agent in Charge Tim Feeney said, “Jarrod was an outstanding agent.  Professionally and personally, he was selfless, dedicated, and reliable.”  Supervisory Special Agent Tom Blades added, “SA Petrelli was an agent devoted to the FBI's mission. He served as a mentor to others and represented the FBI in the highest light. His investigative skills were exemplary and creative.”

SA Petrelli was selected as a relief supervisor after completing his two-year probationary period for new agents.  In October 2012, he received the Distinguished Service Award from the U.S. Attorney for leading a two-and-a-half year investigation dubbed “Operation Scorpion King.”  The investigation resulted in the dismantling of  a violent heroin trafficking ring in the St. Louis area. 

Before joining the FBI, SA Petrelli served four years with the West Palm Beach Police Depart­ment (FL), two years at Broward County Sheriff’s Office (FL), and one year at Amherst Police Department (MA). He was also in the U.S. Army Reserves. He proudly followed in the foot­steps of his grandfather, who retired from the Braintree Police Department (MA).

SA Petrelli earned his Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice at Western New England College (MA) and his Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice at Westfield State College (MA). He graduated from Braintree High School (MA) in 1996. He was born in Weymouth (MA).

Survivors include his wife, their three young daughters, his parents, and his siblings.  Visiting hours will be held on December 11 from 4 to 8 PM at McDonald Funeral Home, 809 Main St., Weymouth, MA. Funeral Mass will be held on December 12 at St. Clare’s Church, Liberty Street, Braintree, MA. SA Petrelli will be buried with military honors in Blue Hill Cemetery (Braintree, MA). In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in SA Petrelli’s memory to the American Heart Association.

Richard Bennett December 11, 2012 at 08:47 AM
G.B. there is always a post mortem required when unexpected premature death takes us.
Tee West December 15, 2012 at 08:26 AM
This is fishy...a 35 year old doesn't just die of natural causes.
Murphy January 04, 2013 at 10:56 PM
God Bless his family! I met his wife and youngest daughter today. Words can't describe how sad I am for this family!

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