No charges in fentanyl death

Daniel Ray Cadena released from custody

Photo by Michael Patrick.

Law enforcement authorities have released a Hollister teen who had been accused earlier this year of supplying another young man with a potent opioid that resulted in an overdose death.

San Benito County District Attorney Candice Hooper said the case of Daniel Ray Cadena, 18, was sent back to Hollister Police for “further information.”

Cadena has not been charged with a crime in relation to the fatal December 2017 drug overdose. He has been released from the San Benito County Jail, according to jail staff.

Hollister Police reported in a February press release that local officers, as well as agents from the Unified Narcotics Enforcement Team, executed a search warrant at Cadena’s home as a result of the investigation into an overdose death.

In December 2017, police and paramedics responded to the fatal overdose of an 18-year-old male, who had ingested several narcotics and controlled substances just before he died, police said. One of the substances consumed by the victim was a counterfeit pharmaceutical medication that is often used as a recreational drug. The drug unknowingly contained the powerful narcotic fentanyl.

Police said their investigation found that the overdose victim had acquired the drugs from Cadena, and officers executed a search warrant at this home in February. He was arrested on suspicion of involuntary manslaughter and drug charges.

However, with the decision by Hooper to ask the arresting agency for more information about the case, Cadena is at this point facing no criminal charges in relation to the death or the victim’s use of drugs.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid pain reliever that is up to 100 times more potent than morphine, according to the U.S Department of Health and Human Services website. While fentanyl can be prescribed by a doctor to treat severe pain, most recent cases of fentanyl-related harm or death in the U.S. are linked to illegally made fentanyl.


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