Drug Dealer Who Sold Fentanyl That Killed Marine Vet With PTSD Gets Life In Prison

news
Deondray Christopher Abrams, left, was found guilty Wednesday, Nov. 28, of distributing fentanyl on March 21, 2017, which resulted in the death of Brandon Jay Demko, right, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan who was suffering from severe PTSD

A Kalamazoo, Michigan, man will serve the rest of his life in prison for selling fentanyl that killed a man.


Deondray Christopher Abrams, 26, was found guilty Wednesday, Nov. 28, of distributing fentanyl on March 21, 2017, which resulted in the death of Brandon Jay Demko, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan who was suffering from severe PTSD, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Due to Abrams' prior conviction, he faces a statutory mandatory term of life in prison when he is sentenced April 8.

Demko, 33, purchased what he and friend Robert Larsen thought was heroin from Abrams on March 21, 2017. They went back to Larsen's home, where Larsen injected Demko and himself, he testified at Abrams' preliminary examination.

Larsen testified he lost consciousness, then awoke 20 minutes later and found Demko blue and unresponsive. He shot Naloxone, meant to reverse overdoses, into his friend's nose and when nothing happened, he called 911, according to a police report. Emergency responders arrived but could not save Demko.

A federal jury convicted Abrams of distributing the fentanyl that killed Demko after a two-day trial.

"Fentanyl is increasingly available in Western Michigan," U.S. Attorney Andrew Birge said in a press release. "Drug dealers are mixing fentanyl with heroin and, as in this case, selling fentanyl as heroin. Fentanyl is so much more powerful than heroin that opioid deaths have risen in the past few years. The U.S. Attorney's Office will continue to aggressively prosecute opioid drug dealers whose product results in death."

———

©2018 Kalamazoo Gazette, Mich. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

WATCH NEXT:

Chief Master Sgt. Jason Morehouse. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Editor's Note: This article by Oriana Pawlyk originally appeared onMilitary.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

The command chief of the 20th Fighter Wing at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, was removed from his position last month after his chain of command received evidence he disrespected his subordinates.

Read More Show Less

Editor's Note: The following is an op-ed. The opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Task & Purpose.

The "suck it up and drive on" mentality permeated our years in the U.S. military and often led us to delay getting both physical and mental health care. As veterans, we now understand that engaging in effective care enables us not just to survive but to thrive. Crucially, the path to mental wellness, like any serious journey, isn't accomplished in a day — and just because you need additional or recurring mental health care doesn't mean your initial treatment failed.

Read More Show Less

Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Radio Free Europe/Radio Free Liberty.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has called on the security alliance's allies to maintain and strengthen their "unity," saying the organization is "the only guarantor of European and transatlantic security."

Stoltenberg told reporters on November 19 that NATO "has only grown stronger over the last 70 years" despite "differences" among the allies on issues such as trade, climate, the Iran nuclear deal, and the situation in northeastern Syria.

He was speaking at the alliance's headquarters in Brussels on the eve of a NATO foreign ministers meeting aimed at finalizing preparations for next month's summit in London.

Read More Show Less
An aerial view of the Pentagon building in Washington, June 15, 2005. (Reuters/Jason Reed JIR/CN)

WASHINGTON — More than $35 million of the roughly $400 million in aid to Ukraine that President Donald Trump delayed, sparking the impeachment inquiry, has not been released to the country, according to a Pentagon spending document obtained by the Los Angeles Times.

Instead, the defense funding for Ukraine remains in U.S. accounts, according to the document. It's not clear why the money hasn't been released, and members of Congress are demanding answers.

Read More Show Less
Paul Szoldra/Task & Purpose

The admiral in charge of Navy special operators will decide whether to revoke the tridents for Eddie Gallagher and other SEALs involved in the Navy's failed attempt to prosecute Gallagher for murder, a defense official said Tuesday.

The New York Times' David Philipps first reported on Tuesday that the Navy could revoke the SEAL tridents for Gallagher as well as his former platoon commander Lt. Jacob Portier and two other SEALs: Lt. Cmdr. Robert Breisch and Lt. Thomas MacNeil.

The four SEALs will soon receive a letter that they have to appear before a board that will consider whether their tridents should be revoked, a defense official told Task & Purpose on condition of anonymity.

Read More Show Less