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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Connecticut

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, May 4, 2018

West Haven Man Sentenced to 27 Months in Prison for Distributing Fentanyl to Bridgeport Overdose Victim

John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that JOHN RODRIGUEZ, 37, of West Haven, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to 27 months of imprisonment, followed by four years of supervised release, for distributing fentanyl to a Bridgeport man who overdosed on the drug in 2015.

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, shortly after midnight on November 7, 2015, Bridgeport Police and emergency medical personnel responded to a residence in Bridgeport after a 29-year-old male had been found unresponsive by his roommate.  The victim was transported by ambulance to the hospital where, after several attempts to revive him, he was pronounced dead.

The investigation, which included witness interviews and analysis of text message communication, revealed that RODRIGUEZ supplied what he believed to be heroin to the victim the day before the victim died.

A post-mortem toxicology report found fentanyl, marijuana and several anti-depressant drugs in the victim’s system, and the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for the State of Connecticut concluded that the victim died from acute fentanyl intoxication.

RODRIGUEZ was arrested on a federal criminal complaint on September 22, 2016.  On December 12, 2017, he pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute, and distribution of, heroin.

This matter was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Haven Task Force and the West Haven and Bridgeport Police Departments.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys John T. Pierpont, Jr. and Jocelyn Courtney Kaoutzanis.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Opioids
Component(s): 
Updated May 4, 2018