More Dealers Facing Murder Charges Over Fentanyl Deaths

More Dealers Facing Murder Charges Over Fentanyl Deaths

( – Fentanyl is a real problem in the United States. Tens of thousands of people have died from accidentally overdosing on it. The issue has become so serious that authorities are now looking to hold drug dealers responsible for the deaths they’re causing.

In California, a new task force aims to hold dealers accountable, which includes bringing homicide charges against suspects. According to CBS News, Lieutenant Bobby Dean of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, leader of the aforementioned task force, said fentanyl is on the rise for a number of reasons. It gives users an “extremely potent high,” and it’s easy to find and buy. Plus, it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. Unfortunately, it’s also extremely dangerous, and just the tiniest amount can kill someone. In 2023, more than 112,000 people died of overdoses, and many of those involved the synthetic opioid.

Dean spoke with CBS News and said that fentanyl deaths “are absolutely approached like a homicide.” Last year, the county seized more than three million fentanyl pills, an uptick from the 2.7 million confiscated in 2022.

It’s not just California looking to hold dealers accountable, either. The movement is spreading across the country. In Wisconsin, a 16-year-old girl is facing years behind bars for being what the prosecutor calls Brown County schools’ “largest drug dealer of fentanyl.” She allegedly dealt the fentanyl that killed an 18-year-old man in 2022 when she was only 15. Prosecutors have charged her as an adult. So far, they’ve rejected plea deals proposed by her defense team.

In Wichita County, Texas, people were dying after buying what they believed to be street Percocet. It was actually fentanyl. A jury convicted one dealer, Jacinto Jimenez, of felony murder in just an hour of deliberations in trial for the death of a 21-year-old man who died after purchasing from him. A judge sentenced him to 45 years in jail.

Nationwide, prosecutors hope that by tying severe charges and prison time to the drug charges resulting in deaths, the number of overdoses will drop.

Copyright 2024,