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Press Release

20-year prison sentence for Cincinnati man who sold fentanyl-laced heroin

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

CINCINNATI - A 46-year old Cincinnati man has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for selling heroin laced with fentanyl to three people who overdosed on it.

Darrell R. Seay was sentenced yesterday. He pleaded guilty on March 25 to one count of distribution of a controlled substance resulting in serious bodily injury.

Court documents reveal that Seay came under investigation by the Hamilton County Heroin Coalition (now known as the Hamilton County Addiction Response Coalition) after Cincinnati Police responded to triple, non-fatal overdoses on January 14, 2020 and learned that Seay had sold one of the victims the fentanyl-laced heroin just before all three victims ingested the substance and overdosed. The three victims overdosed at the residence where he sold it (two in the house and one in the front yard). All three victims were administered Narcan at the scene, were transported to a nearby hospital and survived.

After further investigation, agents obtained a search warrant for the Seay’s residence. When searched on February 21, 2020, law enforcement seized more than half a kilogram of cocaine, approximately 65 grams of fentanyl, more than $75,000 in U.S. currency, two semi-automatic pistols, and paraphernalia indicative of drug trafficking, including digital scales. The guns were found in the wardrobe in the second-floor bedroom where the defendant and his wife sleep. In that wardrobe agents also found baggies of white powder individually wrapped into approximately 10-20 different bags of equal weight, indicative of further drug distribution to customers. Although the guns were not loaded, there were two loaded magazines in that same wardrobe that could properly attach to the firearms seized.

"Drug dealers prey on the addicted and we will hold dealers accountable," said Acting U.S. Attorney Vipal J. Patel in reminding people of the Fentanyl in Narcotic Drugs (FIND) Awareness project launched last December. “Street drugs are laced with fentanyl, which makes addiction even more deadly and peddling such drugs all the more dangerous.”

“This sentencing is the result of great police work in Hamilton County and individuals, like Mr. Seay, who choose to deal drugs in this community will have to answer for their crimes,” said Drug Enforcement Administration Detroit Field Division Special Agent in Charge Keith Martin. “Fentanyl is a very dangerous drug and the three victims in this case could have easily joined the tens of thousands who have already lost their lives to this public health crisis.”

Vipal J. Patel, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Keith Martin, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot K. Isaac announced the sentence handed down today by U.S. District Court Judge Douglas R. Cole. Assistant United States Attorney Jennifer K. Weinhold prosecuted the case on behalf of the United States.

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Updated July 13, 2021

Drug Trafficking