UTICA – A Utica man who police believe is linked to several overdose deaths in the local area is facing a felony drug charge, while further charges are pending, according to New York State Police.
Following a search warrant execution at 10 Johnson Park in Utica on Friday, 35-year-old Jesse Brown Jr. was arrested and charged with felony third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. Police say Brown was allegedly in possession of approximately 26 grams of heroin/fentanyl mixture.
Police say that several items of evidence were found at the residence and they’re being sent to the state police crime lab for analysis, and further charges are pending.
Investigators say Brown is believed to be involved with several overdose deaths in Oneida and Herkimer Counties.
Brown was arraigned in Utica City Court and sent to the Oneida County Jail. He’s scheduled to reappear in court on Feb. 22.
Explaining the seriousness of fentanyl, state police said in their news release:
“Fentanyl is a painkiller commonly used in hospital operating rooms. Opioids like fentanyl work directly on the respiratory center of the brainstem. This can result in a depression of a person’s ability to breathe properly. In the case of fentanyl, it can kill a person rapidly by paralyzing muscles in their chest that help them breathe. It can be up to 100 percent more potent than heroin.”