A Richmond Hill man could face decades in federal prison for trafficking fentanyl, according to officials with the U.S. Department of Justice.
Javarus McKinney, a/k/a “Jody,” 34, was convicted after a four-day trial on various drug charges including the distribution near a school, said Jill E. Steinberg, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. The charges carry a statutory penalty of up to 60 years in prison, followed by a substantial period of supervised release.
There is no parole in the federal system.
The jury acquitted McKinney on enhanced charges related to the death of an overdose victim.
“Fentanyl is addictive, pervasive, and deadly, and drug traffickers like McKinney help fuel this national crisis,” said Steinberg. “Now convicted, he will be held accountable.”
As described in court documents and testimony, Richmond Hill Police officers initiated an investigation Aug. 12, 2020, after a male victim was found dead in a residential pool. An autopsy indicated the man had a fatal dose of fentanyl in his system at the time of death. Additional investigation identified McKinney as a Richmond Hill-area distributor of counterfeit pills containing fentanyl, in addition to marijuana and THC products.
McKinney will be sentenced after a pre-sentence investigation by U.S. Probation Services.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, the Chatham-Savannah Counter Narcotics Team, and the Richmond Hill Police Department, and prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Darron J. Hubbard and Frank M. Pennington II.