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Opioid Addict Gets 69 Days Time Served From Lenient Federal Magistrate: USAO

CHRISTIANSTED — A man who was arrested for simple drug possession of an opioid in January was sentenced by a federal judge Monday to time served.

Marshall D. Miller, 44, of Illinois, was sentenced on Monday to 69 days in prison (time served) for simple possession of fentanyl, U.S. Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert said.

U.S. Magistrate Judge George Cannon also sentenced Miller to a term of supervised release to end upon completion of an inpatient substance abuse program at The Village, Virgin Islands Partners in Recovery but not to exceed one year, and ordered him to pay a fine of $1,000.000 and a special assessment of $25.00.

According to court records, Acting St. Croix Police Chief Herman Lynch encountered Miller on January 7 “acting erratically” on Castle Coakley Road as the impaired man walked towards the Limetree Bay housing facilities in St. Croix.

Lynch noticed that Miller was wobbling and appeared strange. He approached and inquired whether Miller required assistance and eventually called the ambulance for him.

While awaiting arrival of the ambulance, Miller withdrew five plastic baggies from his pockets and threw them on the ground.

The baggies contained fentanyl weighing about 0.7 grams. Miller arrived in St. Croix from Illinois in December of 2019 and was employed by an unnamed subcontractor of Limetree Bay.

He was a resident of the Limetree Bay housing facility. This case is the first federal case filed in the U.S. Virgin Islands involving fentanyl.

In an effort to avoid an adverse impact of the deadly street drug on the Virgin Islands community, the U.S. Attorney’s office will continue to vigorously prosecute those who possess or sell it.

According to his police report, Lynch watched as Miller tossed five baggies at his feet that he initially thought contained cocaine, but “as a precautionary measure” he called on narcotics officers, as he feared the baggies might contain fentanyl.

Four drug overdose deaths on St. Croix have been attributed to the dangerously-potent opiate fentanyl.

Anyone with information that may assist investigators regarding fentanyl or other illegal drugs is encouraged to contact the DEA tip line at www.dea.gov/submit-tip

The case was investigated by the Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD) and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Alphonso Andrews, Jr.

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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