Cedar Rapids man sentenced for distributing heroin, fentanyl causing two-near fatal overdoses

Iowa News

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCAU) – A Cedar Rapids man sold opioids that resulted in two near-fatal overdoses was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison on Thursday.

Jason Bates, 44 of Cedar Rapids, pleaded guilty on August 6, to possessing heroin with intent to distribute it near a protected location and being a felon in possession of a firearm. He also pleaded guilty on March 21, to distributing heroin resulting in serious bodily injury.

According to recent documents, Bates admitted that he distributed at least 110 grams of heroin during two months in 2018.

He also admitted that in March, he sold approximately a quarter of heroin for $40 to a customer. The customer he sold the heroin to lost consciousness when using.

When first responders arrived at the scene, they found the customer unconscious, with pale, cool skin, only breathing four to six times a minute. The first responders gave the unconscious customer Narcan, who then regained consciousness and breathing function.

In April of this year, federal officers performed a search warrant at Bate’s residence. Upon the arrival of the officers, Bates threw a baggie containing 32.66 grams of a mixture of heroin, fentanyl, and acetyl fentanyl out of a window. The offers also found about $2000 in cash, a loaded .40 caliber pistol, digital scales, an empty box for another handgun, and 33 rounds of ammunition.

The .40 caliber pistol had previously been reported stolen after a 2016 home burglary.

According to the recent documents, Bates also sold another customer approximately half a gram of a mixture containing heroin and fentanyl in September 2015. The customer injected himself and his girlfriend with the mixture Bates sold them, and both the customer and his girlfriend lost consciousness.

The girlfriend of the customer remained unconscious for hours, and her lips eventually started turning blue and her skin turned pale. The customer drove his girlfriend to a park in Cedar Rapids, propped her up against a tree and called 911, and waited in the area until first responders arrived before leaving the scene. The girlfriend was admitted to a hospital, and during her stay, she suffered from multiple seizures and a stroke, which caused potentially permanent problems with her balance and vision.

Bates was sentenced to 300 months’ imprisonment and must also serve a six-year term of supervised release after his prison term. There is no parole in the federal system. Bates is being held by the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to federal prison.


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