Hartford Man Pleads Guilty to Drug Charge Stemming from Norwich Overdose Death
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that FELIX LOPEZ, also known as “Pablo,” 23, of Hartford, waived his right to be indicted and 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, cocaine base (“crack cocaine”) and fentanyl.
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 September 13, 2017, Norwich Police and emergency medical personnel responded to a report of an untimely death at a residence in Norwich. Responding officers were informed that the decedent, a 20-year-old woman, had an addiction to heroin. At the scene, officers seized drug and non-drug evidence, including the victim’s cell phone.
The State of Connecticut Office of the Chief Medical Examiner subsequently determined that the victim died from acute fentanyl and heroin intoxication.
The investigation revealed that LOPEZ supplied the heroin and fentanyl consumed by the victim shortly before she died.
LOPEZ was arrested on a federal criminal complaint on November 13, 2017. At the time of his arrest, he possessed a quantity of crack cocaine.
Chief Judge Hall scheduled sentencing for June 28, 2018, at which time LOPEZ faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years. LOPEZ has been detained since his arrest.
This matter has been investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration and Norwich, Hartford and Manchester Police Departments. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John T. Pierpont, Jr.