Felony Distribution and Negligent Homicide Charges for Utah Teen Who Arranged Fatal Drug Deal

A teen has been charged with felony distribution as well as negligent homicide after arranging a drug deal that led to the overdose of a southern Utah woman.

Heroin overdose

Photo by: Tony Webster

A southern Utah woman was found dead of a heroin overdose and police were able to track down the individual who helped her obtain the drugs that led to her death. 19 year old Gadge Christensen admitted to police that he helped obtain the drugs for the woman and was aware of her death. He then self-confessed that prior to helping the woman obtain the heroin, he knew it was dangerous- a fact that anyone with common sense would know. He was booked into Purgatory Correctional Facility on negligent homicide and felony distribution charges.

Negligent Homicide

The heroin that Christensen helped obtain for the woman has not been reported as being laced with anything that would increase the chances of an overdose, but any heroin use carries an overdose risk. Since Christensen knew that basic drug fact prior to the user’s death, he is also facing charges of negligent homicide. Negligent homicide is defined by Utah Code 76-5-206 as when “. . . the actor, acting with criminal negligence, causes the death of another. Negligent homicide is a class A misdemeanor.

Felony distribution

Photo by: Find Rehab Center

Utah Code 58-37-8 states regarding felony distribution of heroin that “ . . . it is unlawful for any person to knowingly and intentionally . . . distribute a controlled or counterfeit substance, or to agree, consent, offer, or arrange to distribute a controlled or counterfeit substance”. Setting up a heroin deal can result in “. . . a second degree felony, punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years”.

 

Exercising Miranda Rights

With the information that is provided so far, Christensen doesn’t appear to be a regular time heroin dealer. He very well could have been a middle man who was fulfilling a request of a user. However since Christensen openly admitted to law enforcement that he had played a part in finding and distributing the heroin to the now deceased woman, he is now facing serious charges with the potential to land him behind bars for several years. Many older teens and young adults do not fully understand their rights when being faced with an arrest. They may not listen closely to all the protections that their Miranda Rights offer, and instead choose to be openly affable. This mindset could result in them portraying themselves out to have more of a criminal intent that they actually did. Anyone who has been read the Miranda Warning is highly encouraged to be honest with law enforcement, but to also exercise their “right to an attorney” prior to speaking to police to ensure they do not admit to crimes in the spirit of being agreeable.

17 Year Old Utah Teen Arrested For Ordering Illegal Drugs from China

A 17 year old Utah teen, who was involved in the overdose death of two Park City boys in 2016, was arrested recently for again ordering illegal drugs from China.

Dark Web drug order

Photo by:
Jakub Hlavaty

A 17 year old female from Park City, Utah was arrested after authorities intercepted multiple shipments of illegal drugs the teen had order off the Dark Web – an anonymous online network known for illegal activity. The teen, whose name is being withheld due to her age, was charged with four second degree felonies for distribution of a controlled substance. One of those charges stemmed from the teen’s role in the overdose death of two boys in 2016.

Overdose deaths of two 13 year olds

In 2016 two Park City Utah boys were found dead after an overdose of a synthetic drug nicknamed “Pink”. The 17 year old female taken into custody this week was alleged to be involved with those boys obtaining that drug from a seller in China. Prior to the boys’ deaths, it is reported they had enlisted the help of the older teen by having her order the drugs and have them delivered to her home. She obliged, and that shipment of drugs later led to the death of the two 13 year old boys.

Young addict

Photo by: katmary (Subject not pictured)

After the deaths of her friends, the teenage girl was open about her struggle with drug addiction; she even went as far as to speak publicly about it. Unfortunately, even though she obviously knew the risk of using drugs -especially from an unknown overseas source- her addiction was too strong and she relented to the craving. Hopefully through the charges against her she will be able to get the substance abuse rehabilitation she needs and not become another victim to the deadly epidemic of addiction sweeping the nation. Anyone, regardless of age who is looking for help with substance abuse is encouraged to call SAMHSA’s national helpline at 1-800-662-HELP. Those needing legal counsel stemming from drug charges should consult with an attorney.