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Press Release

Colorado Springs Woman Sentenced to 30 Years for Distributing Fentanyl Which Killed Teenager

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Colorado

DENVER – The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Colorado announces that Marlene McGuire, 59, of Colorado Springs was sentenced to 30 years in prison for her role in a conspiracy to distribute fentanyl resulting in the death of a juvenile.  McGuire was found guilty by a federal jury in Denver in September of 2023.

According to the facts established at trial, on January 30, 2022, McGuire sold four pills which contained fentanyl and para-fluorofentanyl to the three juveniles near a fire station in the Security-Widefield area of Colorado Springs. On January 31, 2022, the father and stepmother of one of the juveniles—a 16-year-old boy—discovered the boy deceased in his bedroom in their home. The boy’s parents and paramedics attempted to resuscitate him, but the boy had already died. Police and a deputy coroner found paraphernalia used for smoking fentanyl pills in the boy’s room and near his body, as well as two remaining blue pills in a baggie in his dresser drawer. After an autopsy, the El Paso County Coroner’s Office determined the otherwise healthy boy’s cause of death was acute fentanyl and para-fluorofentanyl toxicity. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Western Laboratory tested the two pills found in the boy’s dresser drawer. Both pills contained para-fluorofentanyl, a dangerous chemical analogue of fentanyl. One of the two pills also contained fentanyl, lidocaine, and xylazine.

An investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Colorado Springs Police Department (CSPD) identified McGuire and a co-defendant as the individuals who sold the blue pills that killed the boy. The investigation also revealed that they had been engaged in a conspiracy to sell various controlled substances—including methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, and blue pills—since at least May 2020. On February 21, 2022, the FBI and CSPD executed a federal search warrant at McGuire’s long-time residence in Colorado Springs. In addition to finding both McGuire and a co-defendant in the residence, law enforcement officers located and seized methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, and a blue pill which contained fentanyl.

“Fentanyl again has ended the life of someone far too soon, and it is infuriating that an adult contributed so strongly to a young person’s untimely death,” said U.S. Attorney Cole Finegan.  “We are grateful to our agency partners for their perseverance in getting this drug off the street.”

“Sadly, communities continue to grapple with the effects of fentanyl sales and deaths. Law enforcement alone can’t solve the latest drug crisis, but the FBI will continue to work with partners like the Colorado Springs Police Department to target the worst offenders and hold them accountable,” said FBI Denver Special Agent in Charge Mark Michalek. “This sentence should send a strong message to those who choose to sell fentanyl.”

 “I am saddened by the tragic loss of a young member of our community to the fentanyl epidemic,” said Colorado Springs Police Department Chief Adrian Vasquez. “Fentanyl is having deadly consequences here in Colorado Springs. This case underscores the effectiveness of our collaborative efforts with our federal partners, including the FBI, and demonstrates our unwavering commitment to holding accountable those in our community who prey on others. This sentence also highlights the reason CSPD continues to advocate for stricter state laws that could be used to increase accountability for these crimes.”

United States District Court Judge Regina M. Rodriguez sentenced the defendant on February 22, 2024.  After serving her custodial sentence, the defendant will have six years of supervised release.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Colorado Springs Police Department conducted the investigation. The prosecution as handled by Assistant United States Attorneys Peter McNeilly and Alyssa Mance.

CASE NUMBER: 1:22-cr-00080-RMR


Updated February 23, 2024