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Vineland Man Pleads Guilty to Causing the Drug Induced Death of 18-Year-Old

Atlantic County

By: Yuritza Arroyo

On November 28, Freddie W. Smith, 44, of Vineland, pleaded guilty in Atlantic County Superior Court to one count of first-degree strict liability for causing a drug-induced death.

According to Atlantic County officials, Smith admitted he sold drugs containing fentanyl which killed an 18-year-old local man.

Officials say, under the terms of the plea, Smith is expected to be sentenced to 12 years in State Prison with a mandatory period of parole ineligibility of 10 years and two months.

Smith will also be subject to a five-year term of parole supervision upon his release from prison.

According to State Police, the Buena Vista Criminal Investigation Office of the State Police led the investigation, which revealed the decedent had gone to a Wawa in Vineland at some point during the evening of March 11 into March 12, 2020.

Police say, in the parking lot, Smith sold the drugs containing fentanyl to the decedent, who was found dead in the early morning hours on a couch in his family home.

Toxicology testing of the decedent’s blood determined he died from fentanyl and cocaine, and a search warrant was later executed on Smith’s home, where law enforcement recovered drug packaging paraphernalia, fentanyl, and cocaine.

Smith is scheduled to be sentenced on January 9, 2023.