Bristol Man Pleads Guilty to Heroin Distribution Charge Stemming from Overdose Investigation
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that ROGER TUSCANO, 48, of Bristol, pleaded guilty today before Chief U.S. District Judge Janet C. Hall in New Haven to one count of possession with intent to distribute, and distribution of, heroin.
This matter stems from an ongoing statewide initiative targeting narcotics dealers who distribute heroin, fentanyl or opioids that cause death or serious injury to users.
According to court documents and statements made in court, on April 26, 2017, the Southington Police Department and emergency medical personnel responded to a residence for an unresponsive 54-year-old female who had suffered an apparent drug overdose. Responders attempted lifesaving measures on the victim, including administering naloxone, with minimal effect. The victim was then transported to the hospital. At the scene, officers seized drug and non-drug evidence, including four wax folds that contained heroin.
The victim died on April 28, 2017.
The Connecticut Office of the Chief Medical Examiner determined that the victim’s death was caused by a combination of heroin and clonazepam.
On May 3, 2017, the Bristol Police Department conducted a court-authorized search of TUSCANO’s residence and seized 175 wax folds of suspected heroin, some of which had the same brand stamp as the wax folds found with the victim on April 26. Investigators also seized three cellphones from the residence.
The investigation, which included witness interviews and analysis of TUSCANO’s cell phones, revealed that the victim purchased heroin from TUSCANO at a gas station in New Britain on the morning of April 26, 2017.
TUSCANO was arrested on a federal criminal complaint on October 25, 2017.
Chief Judge Hall scheduled sentencing for September 18, 2018, at which time TUSCANO faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years. TUSCANO is detained pending sentencing.
This matter has been investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Haven Task Force and the Southington and Bristol Police Departments. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John T. Pierpont, Jr.