First-ever fentanyl murder charge in Montgomery County as man is arrested for fentanyl-related death

KTRK logo
Sunday, November 19, 2023
Tap for ABC13 Houston 24/7 Live Stream
Watch Eyewitness News and ABC13 originals around the clock

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- On Friday, the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office made an arrest for a fentanyl murder case they've been investigating since October.

The video above is from ABC13's 24/7 livestream.

James Carter-Smith, Jr. was charged with murder for allegedly supplying fentanyl that resulted in the death of a Montgomery County resident, deputies said.

The investigation began on Oct. 18 when members of the Montgomery County Narcotics Enforcement Team (MOCONET) went to a home on Magnolia Reserve Loop in Montgomery County to assist in a death investigation.

At the scene, deputies reported finding a 34-year-old man dead, along with evidence that implied the man may have overdosed from the use of illegal drugs.

An autopsy later confirmed that the man died from the use of fentanyl, the sheriff's office said.

MOCONET conducted an investigation and issued an arrest warrant for Smith.

Smith's arrest is the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office's first arrest for fentanyl murder.

While MOCONET has been working since 2019 to address fentanyl and its connection to overdose deaths in Montgomery County, it wasn't until Sept. 1 that Texas Legislation passed a bill qualifying "fentanyl murder" as a charge. This applies to people who supply or distribute fentanyl, leading to death.

"This arrest and the new law are vital steps in protecting our community and letting criminals know that these acts will not go unpunished," Sheriff Rand Henderson said.

According to the sheriff's office, Smith is being held with no bond due to the nature of the charge and his criminal history.