Detectives arrested a 31-year-old Renton man accused of supplying fentanyl-laced drugs to a 26-year-old Bellevue woman. The woman was discovered deceased in her Bellevue apartment on June 18, 2020.
Lab results showed the small number of blue M30 Oxycodone pills next to her bed were fentanyl; there wasn’t any oxycodone in the pills. The King County Medical Examiner listed the victim’s cause of death as acute combined drug intoxication, including fentanyl and alcohol.
“These are challenging cases to prove, but our detectives are meticulous and determined,” commented Assistant Chief Wendell Shirley. “They were able to connect the drugs that killed the victim to the alleged dealer and show that he knew they were not legitimate prescription drugs, despite telling the victim they were.”
Detectives arrested the 31-year-old late Wednesday, June 9, 2021, in Renton, and the judge set his bail at $500,000. “We want to send a clear message that we will pursue every lead and use every tool available to track down those selling these dangerous and illegal drugs and hold them accountable,” added Shirley. This is the second suspect in Bellevue to be charged with Substance Abuse Homicide this year.
Officials are seeing an alarming increase in fentanyl in our communities. The drug is 50-times more addictive than heroin and can be lethal in minuscule amounts. In the past five years, King County has seen a nearly 650% increase in fentanyl-related deaths. In Bellevue, there were eight fentanyl-related deaths in 2020 and eight already in 2021.
Public health officials encourage anyone who knows or suspects someone may be using to have naloxone (Narcan) on hand. It’s available at most pharmacies. For more information about fentanyl, visit Public Health – Seattle & King County.
Case # 20-28853