GRAND COUNTY, Utah (ABC4) — A man has been charged in the federal court for allegedly distributing fentanyl to a person in southern Utah, who later overdosed and died.
According to charging documents, Shereldon Cly Yanito was charged at the U.S. District Court of Utah with one count of distribution of a controlled substance resulting in death on Tuesday, May 23. He was arrested the day before in Moab after agreeing to meet up with an undercover agent from the Drug Enforcement Administration.
On April 15, 2022, the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office and Grand County Sheriff’s Office reportedly investigated a case in which a person died as a result of fentanyl intoxication. A witness told authorities that the victim had been asking about where they could find drugs a week before their death, court documents stated.
The same witness also said that they had bought fentanyl from Yanito, also known as “Bobby,” before, according to charging documents. Officials say Yanito had been selling counterfeit blue “M30” pills containing Fentanyl for $40 each to a few people, including the victim and another person who overdosed and almost died, court documents stated.
Investigators were able to confirm the victim had paid Yanito $40 via Venmo the night before their death, court documents stated. Another witness allegedly told investigators that the victim had been trying to stop using pills containing fentanyl and had even moved out to distance themself from the dealer, who the witness identified as Yanito.
On or about June 19, 2022, deputies with the Grand County Sheriff’s Office responded to a call about an unresponsive person near Red Valley Court in Moab. Authorities say they saw Yanito on the couch in a “confused state” when they arrived.
A relative allegedly found several small blue pills stamped “M30” in the garage of the residence where Yanito played video games, which later tested positive for fentanyl. The relative reportedly told authorities that they had to administer Narcan to Yanito before the ambulance arrived.
Additionally, on or about June 24, 2022, a deputy with the Grand County Sheriff’s Office reportedly conducted a traffic stop on an individual who said they wanted to provide information on people who are selling “blues” containing fentanyl to “little kids” in the county. The deputy asked the individual about Yanito, and they said Yanito told them he had “killed a kid,” according to charging documents.
When the deputy asked the witness who the “kid” was, the witness reportedly told the deputy the first name of the confirmed victim.
On Monday, May 22, an undercover officer with the Drug Enforcement Administration sent a text to Yanito, saying she is traveling in the area and would like to purchase some “blues” from him, court documents stated. Yanito reportedly asked the officer to contact him via Instagram and questioned her about a picture of a small bag of “blue” she had posted on her fake account.
Yanito allegedly went on to say he did not have any “blues” and not a lot of people are using them since a few people had overdosed on them. He also reportedly commented on how expensive the pills are and that he originally sold them for $40 per pill.
The undercover officer and Yanito eventually agreed to meet in a hotel room, and he was arrested during a traffic stop in Moab before he reached the hotel, according to court documents. Despite not being interviewed, Yanito allegedly said he was not involved in drugs anymore and that he believed he was targeted because he was the “only one still around.”