CLAY COUNTY, Fla. – A Clay County man and woman are facing drug charges after deputies said one of them tried to sell heroin that turned out to be fentanyl.
News4Jax has been telling viewers about the growing number of fentanyl-related overdoses.
Clay County deputies said they arrested Robert Shull, 38, after they caught him selling drugs in the parking lot of an apartment building. According an arrest affidavit, he was selling heroin that actually turned out to be fentanyl.
News4Jax crime and safety analyst Gil Smith said fentanyl is 50 times more potent than heroin.
"Drug dealers are using it to cut with the heroin," Smith said. "In fact, a drug dealer in Rhode Island was just sentenced for second-degree murder because someone he sold the fentanyl to died minutes after he took it."
When investigators went to Shull's second-floor apartment, they met Jesamone Caro, whom they said was acting suspiciously. As deputies searched the apartment, they found more drugs.
According to an affidavit, during the search, one of the children in the apartment walked up to a deputy and handed him a baggie.
"The saddest part about that is the fact there were children there and the child brought a baggie to the officer, which means they could have been in close proximity to the actual fentanyl," Smith said. "If it gets on them, it could be very dangerous, so to have this around children, which is why they were arrested for child neglect also."
But heroin, fentanyl and marijuana were not the only items found. Deputies also discovered uncapped needles on the kitchen table.
"Any time you have needles, that's dangerous," Smith said. "Whether there are drugs associated with the needles or not, children can stick themselves with it."
Shull and Caro are both facing child neglect charges in addition to drug charges. Shull is also facing an illegal gun possession charge because he's a convicted felon.
The children were taken into protective custody. It's unclear if they were released to another family member.