FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: David Chapman
Phone: (904) 255-3004
Cell: (904) 524-6626
Jan. 17, 2019
FEDERAL JURY FINDS ORANGE PARK MAN GUILTY
IN OVERDOSE DEATH OF 18-YEAR-OLD WOMAN
Jacksonville, FL – On January 16, 2019, a federal jury found Trumaine “Lucky” Muller (34, Orange Park) guilty of one count of distributing fentanyl that resulted in the overdose death of an 18-year-old woman, one count of distribution of heroin and furanylfentanyl, one count of possessing with the intent to distribute cocaine and furanylfentanyl, and one count of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon. Muller faces a maximum penalty of life in federal prison. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for May 6, 2019.
According to evidence presented at trial, on November 9, 2016, at approximately 10:30 pm, Tyler Hamilton, Christopher Williams, and an 18-year-old female with the initials A.B. traveled together to the Cedar Bend apartments in Orange Park, Florida to buy $40 worth of heroin from Muller, a local dealer. Muller was a regular dealer for Williams. Hamilton provided the bulk of the money for the drug transaction. After leaving Muller’s apartment with what they believed to be heroin (which was actually fentanyl), Williams drove to Hamilton’s house. Hamilton went inside, shot up about half of the purchased fentanyl, and overdosed. Hamilton survived.
When paramedics responded to Hamilton’s house, Williams and A.B. drove a short distance to Williams’s house. While at Williams’ house, Williams and A.B. split the remaining $20 of the fentanyl (believing it to be heroin). Williams went into his bathroom, shot up the fentanyl, and passed out. He awoke a short time later when Hamilton called Williams asking him to go to his house to pick him up. When Williams left his house, A.B. was conscious and alert. When Williams and Hamilton returned around midnight, A.B. was asleep on Williams’s sofa.
At 1:32 am on November 10, 2016, Hamilton began searching online to search for signs of an overdose and how to place someone in the “recovery position” (such that they do not asphyxiate in case of vomiting). During the 3:00 am hour, A.B.’s breathing became more labored and she began to aspirate in her sleep. At 4:13 am, Williams and Hamilton called 911. At 4:45 a.m., after paramedics had responded, A.B. was pronounced dead.
Clay County homicide and narcotics detectives responded to the scene and obtained information that indicated that Muller had distributed the fentanyl. Detectives located Muller, who was then a passenger in a stolen rental vehicle on Blanding Boulevard in Orange Park. The detectives watched Muller engage in a suspected drug transaction in a parking lot in Orange Park, and stopped that vehicle a short time later. Inside the car, the detectives found $1,942 in a purse and foil packets used to distribute opiates. The detectives also found cellphone that was later identified as the phone that Hamilton had used on November 9, 2016, to set up the fentanyl deal.
After a follow-up investigation, on February 8, 2017, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office executed a search warrant at Muller’s apartment and recovered distribution amounts of heroin, cocaine, and a loaded .38 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver. At time, Muller had a prior felony conviction and was therefore prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition.
Williams (33) and Hamilton (28) previously pleaded guilty to manslaughter in state court.
This case was investigated by the Clay County Sheriff’s Office and the State Attorney’s Office for the Fourth Judicial Circuit. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Tysen Duva.