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Press Release

Henderson Man Sentenced to 12 Years in Prison for Distributing Fentanyl That Resulted in Death

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of North Carolina

RALEIGH – United States Attorney Robert J. Higdon, Jr. announced that yesterday in federal court, Senior United States District Judge W. Earl Britt sentenced QYDARIUS J. SMALL, a/k/a “Q” and “Peanut,” 20, from Henderson, North Carolina, to 144 months imprisonment, followed by 3 years of supervised release. 

On January 10, 2018, SMALL, was named in a three-count Superseding Indictment returned by a grand jury sitting in the Eastern District of North Carolina.  The indictment charged Small with Distribution and Possession With Intent to Distribute a Quantity of a Mixture and Substance Containing Fentanyl, Causing Serious Bodily Injury or Death on August 28 and 29, 2017.  On March 23, 2018, pursuant to a written plea agreement, SMALL pled guilty to distributing and possessing with intent to distribute a quantity of a mixture and substance containing Fentanyl, a Schedule II controlled substance, which resulted in the death of an individual. 

On August 30, 2017, officers of the Henderson (North Carolina) Police Department responded to a report of a drug overdose at a residence.  Upon arriving at the scene, officers found a deceased individual along with a hypodermic needle, multiple bindles of heroin, and a bindle of heroin uniquely labeled with a green stamp of the word “Thor.”  The investigation revealed that the deceased was the victim of an overdose of heroin containing Fentanyl, and the drugs had been purchased from SMALL.  A search of the victim’s cell phone revealed multiple text messages between the victim and SMALL discussing drug transactions and specifically a drugs with a “Thor[e] green stamp.” 

Later that same day, officers of the Henderson Police Department used the victim’s cell phone to arrange for a controlled purchase of heroin from SMALL.  As SMALL drove to the prearranged sale location with the intent to sell heroin to the deceased victim, law enforcement conducted a traffic stop.  During a search of the vehicle, law enforcement found heroin stamped in green with the word “Thor” and a loaded handgun.  SMALL was placed under arrest and taken to the Henderson Police Department.

United States Attorney Higdon commented, “Qydarius J. Small has been an active part in the opioid crisis and deaths that is tearing apart our country and destroying good communities like Henderson and Vance County, North Carolina.  But now, with the imposition of a 144 month sentence, the people of Henderson can begin to recover from the horrible effects of Small’s actions.  The Court’s sentence gives these communities that opportunity and we are very pleased that the United States Justice Department could play a role in achieving that result.  I commend the Henderson Police Department for their excellent work in this case and bringing this man to justice.”

The case is a federal Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) criminal matter and was investigated by the Henderson Police Department.  Assistant United States Attorney Edward Gray prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.

This case was prosecuted federally as part of the United States Department of Justice’s Opioid Initiative and the Take Back North Carolina Initiative of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina. 

Implemented in March 2018, the Take Back North Carolina Initiative emphasizes the regional assignment of federal prosecutors to work with local, state and federal law enforcement and District Attorney’s Offices on a sustained basis in those communities to reduce the violent crime rate, drug trafficking, and crimes against law enforcement.  The initiative targets those organizations and individuals who are responsible for increasing violent crime rates and drug trafficking – quickly routing the cases to federal court when prosecution in that venue would deliver the most significant impact.

Updated August 29, 2018