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Press Release

New London Man Pleads Guilty to Distributing Heroin Involved in Overdose Death

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

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that JASON SHEPHARD, also known as “Angel,” 19, of New London, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to one count of 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 May 1, 2017, the New London Police Department received a 911 call regarding a drug overdose in New London.  The caller indicated that a male in her apartment was unconscious and barely breathing.  Police and emergency medical personnel responded to the apartment and attempted life-saving measures.  The victim, who was 36, was transported to the hospital and later pronounced deceased.  At the scene, officers seized numerous empty bags that contained a trace amount of white and brown drug residue.


The investigation revealed that SHEPHARD supplied the heroin consumed by the victim hours before the victim died.


On May 1 and May 3, New London Police conducted controlled purchases of heroin from SHEPHARD.  Some of the heroin bags purchased contained fentanyl, and all were marked with the same brand stamp that marked the empty bags of heroin found at the scene of the overdose.


The Connecticut Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has determined that the victim’s death was caused by a combination of fentanyl and alcohol.


Judge Shea scheduled sentencing for January 19, 2018, at which time SHEPHARD faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years.


SHEPHARD was arrested on a federal criminal complaint on May 31, 2017.  He is released on a $100,000 bond pending sentencing.


This matter is being investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Haven Tactical Diversion Squad and the New London Police Department.  The Tactical Diversion Squad includes members from the New Haven, Hamden, Greenwich, Shelton, Bristol, Vernon, Wilton, Milford, Monroe and Fairfield Police Departments, and the Connecticut State Police.


This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarala V. Nagala.

Updated October 24, 2017

Drug Trafficking