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Sudiata Stinson of Vero Beach Sentenced to Over 15 Years in Federal Prison for Distributing Fentanyl

Sudiata Neket Zanja Stinson
Sudiata Neket Zanja Stinson

Indian River County - Wednesday June 12, 2024: On Monday, June 10th, U.S. District Judge Jose E. Martinez sitting in Miami sentenced 47-year-old Sudiata Stinson of Vero Beach to 15-years and 6-months (188 months) in federal prison for distributing a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of fentanyl.

Stinson pleaded guilty on two counts of that charge on February 7 before U.S. Magistrate Judge Shaniek Maynard, sitting in Fort Pierce.

According to court documents filed in the case, following the fentanyl overdose death of a young Vero Beach woman, law enforcement began investigating Stinson as the source of supply. Over the next few months, in a joint investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Indian River County Sheriff’s Office (IRCSO) orchestrated two purchases of fentanyl from Stinson, which led to his indictment for two counts of distributing fentanyl. 

U.S. Attorney Markenzy Lapointe for the Southern District of Florida, Special Agent in Charge Deanne L. Reuter of the DEA Miami Field Division, and Sheriff Eric Flowers of the IRCSO made the announcement.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Justin Hoover. 

According to the DEA’s National Drug Threat Assessment, synthetic drugs, such as fentanyl, are poisoning the nation. Fentanyl is the deadliest drug threat the United States has ever faced, killing 38,000 Americans in the first six months of 2023 alone. Just one fentanyl pill can kill, as noted in DEA’s One Pill Can Kill campaign.

Two milligrams of fentanyl is considered a potentially fatal dose and laboratory testing indicates seven out of 10 pills seized by the DEA contain a lethal dose of fentanyl.