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Man charged after 2017 raid now charged in drug death

Man charged after 2017 raid now charged in drug death

Court documents: Suspect was under surveillance before fatal overdose occurred
Man charged after 2017 raid now charged in drug death
Police work at 16 Cherry St. on Feb. 10, 2017, after a drug raid in which Steven M. Boice was arrested.
Photographer: Erica Miller/Daily Gazette Photographer

ALBANY -- An accused drug dealer who was arrested last year is now accused of providing drugs that caused a fatal overdose, federal prosecutors said.

Steven M. Boice, 28, of Saratoga Springs, was indicted Wednesday on one federal count of distributing fentanyl causing death.

He faces up to life in prison, if convicted.

Boice is accused of distributing furanyl fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid, to a drug user on Feb. 3, 2017. That individual, identified by prosecutors only by the initials "B.L.," then overdosed and died, U.S. Attorney's officials said.

boice.jpg

Pictured: Steven M. Boice

Boice was charged in federal court last year with having two firearms -- a DPMS Panther Arms semi-automatic rifle and a Mossberg Maverick shotgun -- that were allegedly used in his drug trafficking activities, in addition to a charge of possession with intent to distribute furanyl fentanyl. That case is pending.

Boice has been in custody since Feb. 10, 2017, when local police and federal agents raided his residence at 16 Cherry St. in Saratoga Springs after a lengthy investigation.

Investigators from city police and the DEA located approximately 360 bags of furanyl fentanyl, as well as the rifle and shotgun and high-capacity ammunition magazines, in the raid, which began as the suspects were in the process of mixing and packaging the drugs, authorities have said. Investigators used special protective suits when processing the scene to avoid inadvertent exposure to the drugs.

Dealers often mix fentanyl with heroin to make it more powerful and more appealing to addicts. But the mixing results in a more dangerous, unpredictable drug.

The investigation that led to the raid predated the Feb. 3, 2017, overdose allegations by several weeks, according to documents filed previously. Investigators had Boice's residence under surveillance, and an undercover officer had indirect contact with Boice through an intermediary just over a week before the death, documents state.

The distribution involving death allegation against Boice follows similar accusations recently in other cases.

Daniel J. Fillerup, 34, of Albany, was charged earlier this month in connection with the September 2016 fentanyl-related death of a woman in Schenectady.

Matthew Charo, of Saratoga Springs, received 10 years in prison in December for his role in the death of Saratoga Springs resident Katie-Lynn Scheidt. Charo accompanied Scheidt to Schenectady in October 2014 to purchase heroin for her. She later overdosed on the drug and died.

Also, Ronald Showers received 54 months in federal prison last summer for his role in the death of a Schenectady woman. He admitted he put a bundle of heroin in her car. She was found dead the next day with the bundle in her bedroom. A rubber band on the bundle carried traces of Showers' DNA.

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