Alleged drug dealer charged in overdose death of 25-year-old woman

Posted at 1:03 PM, Feb 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-20 15:03:41-05

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    Okaloosa County, Fla. (WALA) — A Fort Walton Beach man is being charged in connection with the overdose death of a 25-year old woman in September 2017.

The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s office today charged 38-year-old Thomas Baldwin III of Green Acres Avenue with sale of a controlled substance and manslaughter.

They say investigators were able to link Baldwin with the fentanyl related death of Rhiannon Reiss who was found unresponsive inside a home on Chinas Cove September 29th of 2017.

The Medical Examiner’s Office stated the cause of death was “acute fentanyl exposure.” Fentanyl is commonly substituted and/or mixed with heroin and can be lethal in small doses.

A witness told authorities that he and Reiss used what he believed to be heroin prior to her overdosing. The purchase of the drug was traced back to Baldwin and OCSO investigators say Baldwin’s act of selling narcotics caused Reiss’s death.

Baldwin was already being held in the Okaloosa County jail on a charge of Failure to Appear on an original charge of Possession of a Controlled Substance.

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