(District Attorney, Santa Clara County) — A San Jose drug dealer has been charged with murder after he sold fentanyl to a man who fatally overdosed. The decomposed victim was found in his apartment about 10 days after buying the deadly drug.
Manuel Luarodriguez, 29, knew of several fatal overdoses tied to the opiate and had overdosed himself. Rodriguez will be arraigned this afternoon on the charges in Department 23 of the Hall of Justice in San Jose. He faces prison if convicted.
“Fentanyl is poison,” District Attorney Jeff Rosen said. “When someone sells poison to someone knowing that they could die—and they die—they will be prosecuted. I would like to thank the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office for their dedication and hard work on serious cases like this.”
DA Rosen’s Office has charged several people for selling illegal drugs to people who had fatal overdoses.
On April 26, 2022, the 61-year-old victim was found dead in his home by Sheriff’s patrol deputies. During an examination of the victim’s cell phone pursuant to a search warrant, Sheriff’s detectives located text messages about 10 days before. They showed what seemed to be a fentanyl deal. Sheriff’s detectives noted that data showed the victim stopped using his cell phone that day.
Investigators later examined security video footage that showed the deal.
Investigators also observed Luarodriguez dealing fentanyl to other potential victims. He told some of them to be careful because the drug was potentially deadly.