AVON, Ind. — An 15-year-old Avon High School student's suspected overdose death has led to multiple arrests on drug dealing charges.
And now, at least one man faces a murder charge.
Police believe the pills the teen's friend bought were laced with fentanyl.
Court documents allege 38-year-old Kyle Rudman, of Avon, and a juvenile suspect dealt drugs laced with fentanyl to teenagers — a potent and deadly synthetic cocktail put into a pill.
Police believe it led to dire consequences for a student at Avon High School.
It's the exact kind of drug danger the DEA tries so hard to stop.
"Just last year, for example, DEA and our partners seized over 50 million fake fentanyl pills. Six out of every 10 that were analyzed had a potential fatal dosage unit in it," said Michael Gannon, special agent in charge for the DEA. "They're being poisoned. They don't know it's being laced with fentanyl. And they don't want to die, and it's devastating."
On March 15, Avon police responded to a report of an overdose.
Police arrived and went into a bedroom to find a teen unresponsive. Medics arrived and confirmed the teen's death.
Toxicology results are still pending.
Police said they found a plastic bag with pills labeled "M 30" on his nightstand, plus a tightly rolled paper tube with powder residue and a quarter of another blue pill.
Police said the teen's friend told them the evening before that the two boys bought 10 "perc 30s" or "M 30s" from a juvenile for $100 at an intersection in Avon.
He told detectives they each tried an eighth of a pill that looked like Percocet. Police said it was actually a fake, laced with fentanyl.
The next day, the boy's friend was gone.
After getting a search warrant, police went to the suspect's home, where they spoke with Kyle Rudman and the teen suspect.
The teen suspect told police he knew there was fentanyl in the pills he gave to a high school student.
At the home, police found two pill bottles, one with more than 100 blue pills labeled with "M 30" and the other with seven pills labeled with "Xanax."
Detectives also seized an empty baggie, digital scale, small notebook with names and numbers, USPS shipping box with 11 boxes of THC vape cartridges, and a brown wallet that had an Indiana ID card for Kyle Rudman and two small plastic baggies containing a white powder substance.
The teen suspect told police that after school, Rudman drove him to another student's house, where he sold him "like 11" pills for $100.
The teen suspect then told police he has been buying pills from another guy on Snapchat for more than a month and uses CashApp to pay him.
The teen suspect also said he's sold THC vape pens to 10-15 people at Avon High School.
On March 16, police searched the teen suspect's phone, which confirmed the illegal drug transactions.
Police also found multiple text messages between Rudman and the teen suspect that discussed buying and selling illegal THC vape cartridges.
Another text message between the teen suspect and Rudman showed the teen asking Rudman to buy him psilocybin mushrooms and Xanax because the teen said he knows a lot of people who like them.
Police then arrested the teen suspect and Rudman.
Rudman confirmed he knew the THC vape cartridges were being sold to minors.
Rudman also told police he has been buying approximately one gram of heroin every few days from another person at a pub on the west side of Indianapolis.
Rudman was then taken to the Hendricks County Jail and has been charged with the following:
- Dealing in a narcotic drug to a minor
- Dealing in a Schedule IV controlled substance in the presence of a minor
- Neglect of a dependent
- Dealing in marijuana with the sale intended for a minor
- Contributing to the delinquency of a minor, resulting in death
- Possession of a controlled substance
- Possession of marijuana
Police confirmed Rudman is not being charged in the victim's deadly overdose.
The teen suspect was also arrested and taken to the Hamilton County Juvenile Center on multiple charges, including dealing – resulting in death.
Third suspect arrested
Avon police made a third arrest in the case Wednesday at a hotel on the west side of Indianapolis.
Trevor Strickland, 24, of Plainfield, was on arrested on charges of murder - kills while committing/attempting dealing/manufacturing cocaine/narcotic drug, dealing/manufacturing meth and dealing a schedule I, II, III, IV, or V controlled substance.
At the time of his arrest, police said Strickland had nearly 1,000 tablets of "M 30" pills suspected to contain fentanyl, more than 26 ounces of additional narcotics, more than $18,000 in cash and a loaded handgun.
Court documents allege he used Snapchat to set up drug deals.
Teens told detectives "Trev," as they knew him on Snapchat, distributed to "multiple high school kids" who attend Avon High School.
The juvenile who was arrested told detectives he'd been buying "M 30" pills from "Trev" for about a month to a month-and-a-half. He also told police he's selling THC vape pens to 10-15 people at Avon High School.
The DEA warns most pills not bought from a pharmacy just aren't what they seem.
Gannon said two major cartels are responsible for flooding the U.S. with fake pills containing fentanyl. They kill and they're in nearly every Indiana community.
"Never in the history of our country has there been a more dangerous time than it is now to use drug illegally," Gannon said, "because you're risking your life every time."
Avon Community Schools shared a statement with 13News about the high school students death:
"Last Wednesday evening, Avon Police informed us an AHS student had died. We are deeply saddened by this loss. We made additional mental health professionals available to support our students and staff through the remainder of the week. The family remains in our thoughts and prayers."
Click here for resources and information for parents to talk to their kids about substance abuse.