KSL.com in Salt Lake City, Utah reported that a federal judge sentenced Adam Patrick Hemmelgarn to 128 months in prison in September. Hemmelgarn had previously pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and was one of three individuals originally indicted by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) for their roles in the overdose death of 20-year-old Jaydon Rogers in March of 2018. Hemmelgarn’s co-defendants were Tyrell Jabbar Perry, who is scheduled to be sentenced in November, and Christian Scott Jimerson, who admitted his guilt and is participating in the Utah Alternatives to Conviction Track (UACT) program.
According to a court document, Hemmelgarn admitted that he “conspired with Tyrell Perry and others to distribute controlled substances. My arrangement with Perry required him to buy at least $200 in fake oxycodone pills from me at a time, typically at a cost of $15 a pill. On the evening of March 11, 2018, I sold Perry several fake oxycodone pills – pills Perry knew to be fake.” The pills were counterfeits made with cyclopropyl fentanyl. Perry distributed the pills to multiple individuals, but only the pill sold to Jaydon Rogers contained a fatal dose.
PSM began to track the spread of counterfeit pills made with fentanyl in 2015. By July 2019, we found reports of these pills in 48 states, with deaths in 33. In the few months since counterfeit fentanyl pills have been confirmed in Delaware, and deaths have been confirmed in five additional states: New Hampshire, West Virginia, South Dakota, Rhode Island, and Alaska.