La Plata, MD – Samantha Nicole Thomas, 33 of Waldorf, who sold a fatal dose of Fentanyl—a powerful synthetic opioid analgesic similar to morphine, but 50 to 100 times more potent—that led to the death of Christopher Wade, 35 of Mechanicsville, left, was sentenced to 10 years of active time in Charles County Circuit Court Wednesday, May 17.
Thomas accepted a plea agreement with the Charles County States Attorney’s Office after initially rejecting the offer weeks ago. Assistant States Attorney John Stackhouse said that Wade’s roommate found him unresponsive in the early morning hours of Oct. 31, 2015.
“He began CPR and called 911 at 2:19 a.m.,” Stackhouse related.
The prosecutor said Charles County Sheriff Office deputies and emergency personnel responded to the scene. Despite several attempts by an emergency medical technician to revive the patient with NARCAN, a counter-opiate drug, responders were not able to bring the patient back. “At no time was he responsive,” Stackhouse said. “At 2:48 a.m. he was pronounced deceased.”
Detectives found drug paraphernalia near the body and residue on that material tested positive for Fentanyl. Stackhouse added that had the case proceeded to trial, he would have questioned an expert witness who transcribed text messages between Thomas and the victim the day before his death, which would have shown that she provided him with the drugs that killed him.
“In an interview with two Charles County Sheriff’s Office investigators, Ms. Thomas did admit that she, the defendant, gave Wade the CDS. She told them she thought he was on Xanex, but there was no evidence of that in the toxicology reports,” he said.
Investigators found that Thomas was going to Baltimore City and brought back what was called “scramble,” a mixture about 5 to 7 percent heroin. “In this case, it was 100 percent Fentanyl,” Stackhouse stated.
Sandra Wade, mother of Christopher Wade, told the court that her son did everything he could for the defendant. “He took in her dogs because she kept getting evicted from place to place,” she said. “He did everything he could for her. She knew immediately, when she got the call [that he had died]. Yet, she continued to go out there and sell drugs. She continued to go to Baltimore.
“My son mattered,” Wade told the court. “He really mattered. I would like for the court to start taking these cases seriously.”
Stackhouse said there have been 15 fatalities this year alone from heroin and opiate overdoses, 179 in the past three years.
Thomas pled guilty to count two, manslaughter. It is the first time in the history of Charles County that a dealer has been sentenced on manslaughter charges related to opiate abuse.
Judge Amy J. Bragunier, as part of the plea agreement, sentenced Thomas to 10 years active time concurrent to her previous sentences.
“There is no probation, just a flat 10-year sentence and that sentence begins today,” the judge said.
Originally posted on The BayNet: