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Muncie Drug Dealer Sentenced to 15 Years in Federal Prison for Armed Trafficking of Fentanyl Pills

— January 9, 2024

Seven out of ten illegal fentanyl tablets seized from U.S. streets and analyzed by the DEA have been found to contain a potentially lethal dose of the drug.

INDIANAPOLIS – Jesse Daniel Ross, II, 23, of Muncie, Indiana, has been sentenced to 15 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to possession with intent to distribute 400 grams or more of a substance containing fentanyl and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

According to court documents, on multiple occasions in early 2023, Drug Enforcement Administration agents observed Ross sell a total of 1,000 fentanyl pills for $3,000.

On June 12, 2023, a search warrant was executed at Ross’ Muncie home. Officers located over 3,000 more pills containing a total of 779 grams of fentanyl, over $12,000 in cash, and two handguns. Both of the guns were loaded and within arm’s reach of Ross’ fentanyl stash and drug proceeds.

In an interview with investigators, Ross admitted to selling “M30” labeled fentanyl pills to as many as four people per day.

At the time of his arrest, Ross was on probation in Delaware County following a prior conviction for dealing narcotics in the presence of a minor. Ross is prohibited under federal law from possessing a firearm due to his previous felony conviction.

“The ongoing fentanyl crisis continues to ravage our families and communities—drug poisonings are now the leading cause of death for Americans 18 to 45 years old. The defendant had a direct hand in pushing thousands of these poisonous pills into Muncie’s neighborhoods,” said Zachary A. Myers, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana. “Armed fentanyl traffickers are a top priority of the U.S. Attorney’s Office. With our federal, state, and local partners, we are committed to dismantling these operations and ensuring that those responsible are held accountable.”

The DEA, Muncie- Delaware County Drug Task Force and the Muncie Police Department investigated this case. The sentence was imposed by U.S. District Court Chief Judge Tanya Walton Pratt. Judge Pratt also ordered that Ross be supervised by the U.S. Probation Office for five years following his release from federal prison.

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Photo by Fey Marin on Unsplash

U.S. Attorney Myers thanked Assistant United States Attorney Barry D. Glickman, who prosecuted this case.

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, as little as two milligrams of fentanyl can be fatal, depending on a person’s body size, tolerance, and past usage—a tiny amount that can fit on the tip of a pencil. Seven out of ten illegal fentanyl tablets seized from U.S. streets and analyzed by the DEA have been found to contain a potentially lethal dose of the drug.

One Pill Can Kill: Avoid pills bought on the street because One Pill Can Kill. Fentanyl has now become the leading cause of death for adults in the United States. Fentanyl is a highly potent opioid that drug dealers dilute with cutting agents to make counterfeit prescription pills that appear to be Oxycodone, Percocet, Xanax, and other drugs. Fake prescription pills laced with fentanyl are usually shaped and colored to look like pills sold at pharmacies. For example, fake prescription pills known as “M30s” imitate Oxycodone obtained from a pharmacy, but when sold on the street the pills routinely contain fentanyl. These pills are usually round tablets and often light blue in color, though they may be in different shapes and a rainbow of colors. They often have “M” and “30” imprinted on opposite sides of the pill. Do not take these or any other pills bought on the street – they are routinely fake and poisonous, and you won’t know until it’s too late.

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