Oklahoma Man Charged with First-degree Murder in Fentanyl Overdose Death

Beverly Cantrell - February 16, 2022 9:20 pm

Attorney General (AG) John O’Connor filed first-degree felony murder charges against a 23-year-old man after investigators found the drugs he sold to an Oklahoma County man caused the man’s death.

According to court documents, Joshua Josiah Toliver is accused of selling fake oxycodone pills that were laced with fentanyl to 27-year-old Cole Stamps back in September of 2021.

A medical examiner said the probable cause of death for Stamps was “Acute Fentanyl Toxicity” after finding 14 ng/mL of fentanyl in Stamps’ blood.

“Fentanyl is incredibly dangerous because it is deadly in very small amounts,” said AG O’Connor. “My office, along with our law enforcement partners, will continue to go after those who try to profit from peddling these illicit drugs to Oklahomans. My deepest condolences go to the victim’s family and loved ones.”

During the investigation in Stamps’ death, authorities seized more pills from Toliver’s residence that tested positive for the presence of fentanyl and also found a loaded semi-automatic pistol.

Toliver is charged with the Trafficking of Fentanyl, Aggravated Trafficking of Fentanyl, and the Use of a Communication Device to Facilitate the Distribution of a Controlled Dangerous Substance. These charges are in addition to the first-degree felony murder charge.

According to court records, Toliver has previous arrests for Distribution of a Controlled Substance back in 2020, a DUI in 2020, Possession of a Controlled Substance in 2020, Carrying a Firearm with Possession of a Controlled Substance in 2020, and received a seven-year deferred sentence in July of 2021.

Under Oklahoma law, a person commits the crime of murder in the first degree, regardless of malice, when that person or any other person takes the life of another human being, if the death of a human results from the unlawful distribution of controlled dangerous substance or synthetic controlled substance.

Toliver is currently in custody and the AG’s office iterates that he is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.




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