A Lacey Township resident who sold a mix of heroin and fentanyl that killed a 25-year-old Berkeley man last spring must spend nearly six years in state prison before he’s eligible for parole.
Charles Rice, 58, was sentenced Friday in Toms River to a plea-bargained seven years behind bars, 85 percent of which he must serve under New Jersey’s No Early Release Act, for manslaughter, Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer said.
Superior Court Judge Rochelle Gizinski also sentenced Rice to a concurrent six-year sentence for distributing heroin and fentanyl.
Rice pleaded guilty to both charges this past December.
Billhimer acknowledged the workof Senior Assistant Prosecutor Meghan O’Neill, who prosecuted the case.
He also thanked his Major Crime Unit, High Tech Crime Unit and Victim/Witness Advocacy Unit, as well as Berkeley police and the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, which collected evidence.
“This particular defendant sold heroin that contained fentanyl, which ultimately caused the victim’s death,” Billhimer said. “ We have been very clear that we will continue to arrest and prosecute individuals that pedal illegal and sometimes deadly narcotics in Ocean County.”
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