Long Island Man Pleads Guilty to Heroin and Fentanyl Trafficking
Defendant Admitted to Causing the Overdose Death of a 21-Year-Old Massapequa Woman
CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. - Earlier today, at the federal courthouse in Central Islip, Donta Riddick pleaded guilty to possession of heroin and fentanyl with intent to distribute on September 15, 2020. Riddick also admitted to the distribution of heroin and fentanyl on September 13, 2020 that caused the death of a 21-year old resident of Massapequa, New York. As part of his guilty plea, Riddick agreed to a sentence of 198 months’ imprisonment, to be followed by five years’ supervised release, subject to the Court’s approval. Today’s proceeding was held before United States District Judge Gary R. Brown.
Timothy Foley, Acting Special Agent-in-Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration, New York Division (DEA), Breon Peace, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and Patrick J. Ryder, Commissioner, Nassau County Police Department (NCPD), announced the guilty plea.
“The facts of the case clearly demonstrate fentanyl’s lethal nature. Today’s guilty plea culminates one of many DEA investigations targeting drug trafficking rings whose illegal actions contribute to the rising drug-related overdose rates. I commend the investigators and prosecutors involved in this case,” stated DEA Acting Special Agent-in-Charge Foley.
“Today, the defendant admitted to trafficking heroin laced with fentanyl that caused the overdose death of a young woman on Long Island,” stated United States Attorney Peace. “The opioid epidemic and the tragic overdose deaths of so many have had a devastating impact on our communities. This Office, together with our federal and local partners, will continue to work tirelessly to prosecute and hold accountable those who contribute to this serious problem.”
“Defendant Donta Riddick did intentionally sell illegal drugs to a young woman who ultimately passed from an overdose of those drugs which were laced with deadly fentanyl. The multi-agency investigation led to the arrest of the defendant which removes a dangerous drug dealer from our communities. I would like to thank and congratulate all of the investigators and those respective agencies for a job well done,” stated NCPD Commissioner Ryder.
According to court filings and statements made by the defendant at the guilty plea proceeding, on the night of September 13, 2020, Riddick sold fentanyl-laced heroin to the victim, who suffered a fatal overdose at a motel in Massapequa the following morning. A review of the victim’s cell phone by law enforcement revealed text messages she exchanged with Riddick in which she appeared to be ordering heroin from the defendant. On September 15, 2020, during the subsequent investigation by the DEA and NCPD, Riddick was arrested in possession of street-level quantities of the same fentanyl-laced heroin that had caused the death of the victim the day before.
The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Long Island Criminal Division. Assistant United States Attorneys Charles N. Rose and Samantha Alessi are in charge of the prosecution.
The Defendant: Donta Riddick, 35, of West Babylon, New York
E.D.N.Y. Docket Nos. 20-CR-517 (S-1) (GRB)