Wareham Heroin Dealer Charged With Manslaughter After Woman He Sold To ODs


CapeCod.com – A Wareham man has been indicted on a manslaughter charge related to a heroin overdose in what a local prosecutor says is a first-of-its-kind case in Plymouth County.

Steven D. Foss, 33, of Wareham is accused of selling the heroin that Paige Lopes, 25, also of Wareham, overdosed on in February.

When Wareham Police arrived on the scene on February 21, Lopes was already dead. In addition to the manslaughter charge, Foss was also indicted on five counts of heroin distribution and one count of possession with intent to distribute heroin.

He was arraigned Tuesday in Brockton Superior Court and was ordered held on $50,000 bail.

Tuesday’s charges allege that Lopes purchased $80 worth of heroin from Foss, ingested the drug and died.

It is the first time the Plymouth County district attorney’s office has filed manslaughter charges in connection with a heroin-related overdose death, according to Plymouth County District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz.

Wow. This is a tough one. On the one hand, if it’s my family member that ODs then I’m probably completely on board if they charge the dealer with manslaughter, but holy shit is this a slippery slope.

By this logic, don’t we need to charge every single employee of the tobacco companies with manslaughter? They are manufacturing and selling a drug that is known to kill people. Aren’t they just as guilty as this guy?

What about a doctor that prescribes opiates for pain and the patient overdoses? Will we start charging doctors with manslaughter?

I realize that we are at a desperate point with heroin and desperate times call for desperate measures, but this could put some people in jail that don’t belong there. Think about this scenario…

What if a heroin addict is in withdrawals, they are suffering, they manage to manipulate someone who loves them into getting them heroin to end the suffering and they OD. Did their loved one commit manslaughter?

Sure, there will be some clear cut cases where the drug dealer is a scumbag that preys on addicts, but there will also be many, many cases where the person responsible for providing the victim with heroin loved them more than anyone else on earth. I just don’t think I trust our court system enough to hand them that broad of a brush stroke when it comes to something as serious as charging people with manslaughter.

Heroin dealers are scumbags, no doubt about it. So maybe make the penalty for selling heroin more in line with the penalties for manslaughter. That way the distinction is made at the law enforcement level instead of the court level. There’s a big difference between a real heroin dealer and some dude who is the one who gets the heroin for his group of friends.

If we just start charging everyone that gives someone something that kills them with manslaughter, McDonald’s won’t have any employees left in a few years and every liquor store owner will be behind bars.

P.S. Locking up street level dealers, no matter what the charge, isn’t going to stop anything anyway. There are ten more lined up to immediately take their place. Maybe we should be talking about the real root of the problem? Maybe we should think a little longer before destabilizing entire foreign regions with acts of imperialism in order to impose our beliefs upon people that simply don’t share them?

Maybe, just maybe, the well being of our children at home should be more important than liberating people that hate us? Liberating them and giving them the freedom to sell us heroin? Maybe then we could stop asking our local police to keep cutting the heads off of the weeds that are popping up all around us while our federal government waters their root systems? Or whatever, let’s just keep watching the Kardashians and hope it all goes away soon.

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Comments 5

  1. should we hold liquor store owner responsible for any crimes committed after someone drinks their products?

    when you look at what should be a crime and what shouldn't its actually very simple. No victim – No crime. and no the guy who OD'd is not a victim of the dealer hes a victim of the heroin and himself. if 2 adults make a peaceful transaction there is no victim even if you think one of them is making a stupid decision. people should be free to make their own choices as long as those choices aren't infringing on the rights of others.

  2. i think its pretty common knowledge these days that the war on drugs is a failure and its basically just a war on people. americans are locked up by a much greater % than any other country. we are also much more likely to be killed by our own cops. this isnt normal and it isn't ok.

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