Huntington Man Pleads Guilty to Fentanyl Crime
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of West Virginia
Defendant Distributed Substance Linked to Fatal Overdose
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Christopher D. Spaulding, also known as “Casino,” 32, of Huntington, pleaded guilty today to distribution of fentanyl.
According to court documents and statements made in court, on March 4, 2019, Spaulding was at an Eighth Street bar in Huntington when two individuals approached him and asked if he had cocaine for sale. Spaulding accompanied the individuals from the bar to a vehicle parked outside. Spaulding admitted that while in the vehicle, he distributed a substance containing cocaine and fentanyl to both individuals.
Spaulding further admitted that shortly after one of the individuals nasally inhaled the substance, she began to exhibit signs of an overdose. Later that evening, Spaulding drove the individual to Cabell Huntington Hospital in her vehicle. The individual was not responsive or breathing when they reached the hospital, and hospital staff physically removed her from the vehicle. The individual was later pronounced dead by medical staff.
Spaulding also admitted that he later learned that the other individual had exhibited signs of an overdose after nasally inhaling the substance. This individual received naloxone from Cabell County Emergency Medical Services before being transported to Cabell Huntington Hospital where he recovered.
Toxicology testing confirmed that the substance distributed by Spaulding to both individuals contained fentanyl and cocaine. Spaulding admitted that the cause of death of the individual who died was due to alcohol, fentanyl and cocaine intoxication. Spaulding further admitted that this individual would not have died but for the fentanyl he distributed to her.
Spaulding is scheduled to be sentenced on March 18, 2024, and faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, at least three years of supervised release, and a $1 million fine.
United States Attorney Will Thompson made the announcement and commended the investigative work of the Huntington Police Department and the West Virginia State Police.
United States District Judge Robert C. Chambers presided over the hearing. Assistant United States Attorneys Courtney L. Finney and Stephanie Taylor are prosecuting the case.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia. Related court documents and information can be found on PACER by searching for Case No. 3:23-cr-18.
Updated November 27, 2023