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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Carolina

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Man Pleads Guilty to Illegal Distribution of Oxycodone Resulting in the Death of Former University of South Carolina Student

Columbia, South Carolina --- United States Attorney Sherri A. Lydon announced today that Anthony James Edward Hunt, 24, of Columbia, South Carolina, pleaded guilty in federal court to the distribution of oxycodone resulting in death.

        Evidence presented to the court showed that in January 2016, Hunt sold a former University of South Carolina student, named in the indictment as R.B., alprazolam tablets on January 24 and 26, 2016, after R.B. expressed her desire to commit suicide.  When the alprazolam tablets failed to cause R.B. to die, Hunt advised R.B. that she could take her life by ingesting oxycodone tablets, and he provided her with detailed instructions on how to consume the oxycodone pills.  On January 27, 2016, Hunt sold R.B. ten 30-milligram oxycodone tablets.  The next day, R.B. was found deceased in her apartment.  Experts opined that R.B.’s death was caused by an oxycodone overdose.  After his arrest, Hunt admitted to law enforcement that he distributed the oxycodone to R.B. knowing that she intended to commit suicide.

        Hunt faces a maximum penalty of life in federal prison.  United States District Judge J. Michelle Childs of Columbia accepted the guilty plea and will sentence Hunt after receiving and reviewing a presentencing report prepared by the United States Probation Office.

        “This case reveals the dangers associated with the illegal distribution of prescription drugs, particularly opioids,” said U.S. Attorney Lydon.  “The U.S. Attorney’s Office will never tire in our fight for justice for victims of unscrupulous drug dealers, and we will continue to work with law enforcement and community leaders to stem the tide of an epidemic that has devastated countless American families.”

        The charges against Hunt were the result of an investigation led by Drug Enforcement Administration Agent Adam Roberson, with the assistance of the Richland County Sheriff’s Office, Richland County Coroner’s Office, Columbia Police Department, University of South Carolina Police Department, and Fifth Circuit Solicitor’s Office. 

        Assistant United States Attorney Benjamin Garner of the Columbia office is prosecuting the case.

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Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Opioids
Prescription Drugs
Component(s): 
Updated April 23, 2019