Six charged in Oklahoma on suspicion of running deadly drug ring

Reuters News
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Posted: Sep 02, 2015 1:37 PM

By Heide Brandes

OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - Six people have been charged in Oklahoma with homicide, accused of running an illegal prescription drug ring that authorities linked to the overdose death of a woman last year, police said on Wednesday.

The arrests of three men and two women took place outside of Tulsa and stemmed from the death of Jennifer McNulty, 38, who died after taking oxycodone she purchased from a network of prescription drug dealers. Her son was one of those arrested.

A woman already jailed on other charges also was indicted on murder charges in the case, authorities said.

"People need to realize giving or selling prescription drugs to someone other than the person the drugs were prescribed for is a felony and makes them responsible for what happens; in this case the death of a woman, and that's murder," Pryor Police Chief Steven Lemmings said in a statement.

Prescription drug abuse led to nearly 3,200 unintentional poisoning deaths in Oklahoma from 2007-2011, and 81 percent involved at least one prescription drug, according to a state study.

In 2010, Oklahoma had the fourth-highest unintentional poisoning death rate, including overdoses, in the United States, with 17.9 deaths per 100,000 people, the study said.

(Editing by Jon Herskovitz and Will Dunham)