According to The Daily Sentinel, a federal grand jury indicted a Grand Junction, Colorado man in a case involving counterfeit pills made with fentanyl. Christopher Huggett was charged with one count of distribution of fentanyl which resulted in death and one count of distribution of fentanyl which resulted in serious bodily injury. Huggett pleaded not guilty to both counts.
The indictment listed “J.E.” as the person who died and “Z.G.” as the person who survived a near-fatal overdose. U.S. Magistrate Judge Gordon Gallagher’s Order of Detention stated that the government alleges that Huggett sold a dozen of the counterfeit pills to “Z.G.,” who in turn sold ten of them to “J.E.” In January, the Aspen Times identified 28-year-old Jonathan Ellington of Carbondale as the victim who died. After an emergency medical services (EMS) crew was unable to revive Ellington, the Garfield County Coroner’s Office declared him dead at 6:25 PM on December 28, 2017. Thirty minutes later, EMS was called out to a second private residence in Carbondale where they started treating “Z.G.” before transporting him to a hospital for further treatment.
At the time, police said issued a public warning reminding the people never to take prescription pills that belong to another person and to avoid pills of unknown origin. The police said both men took pills that purported to be oxycodone, but subsequent testing showed the pills to be counterfeits made with fentanyl. Huggett faces 20 years to life in federal prison if he is found guilty. A trial date was set for January 7, 2019.