BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Karon Elijah Peoples, 24, of Baltimore, pleaded guilty Wednesday to a heroin distribution conspiracy.
Peoples admitted he was responsible for distributing, or facilitating the distribution, of between 9 and 10 kilograms of heroin.
Peoples also admitted that nine fatal overdose victims and 18 overdose survivors had contacted Peoples’ phone prior to the overdose, either by phone call or text message, in order to arrange to purchase heroin.
According to Peoples’ plea agreement, during fall 2017, law enforcement began an investigation of Peoples after learning he was supplying significant quantities of heroin to customers throughout Maryland who traveled to Baltimore City to get heroin. As part of the investigation, law enforcement conducted controlled purchases and undercover purchases of heroin from Peoples.
On December 7, 2017, with search warrants for People’s home, at a stash location on West Lexington Street in Baltimore and on his vehicle, law enforcement recovered 900 grams of heroin, $405,156 in cash in a blue checkered Louis Vuitton bag, a Rolex watch, a money counter and digital scales and other drug paraphernalia from the stash location. They also found 68 grams of heroin from the vehicle.
Law enforcement also found, on December 7, 2018 and January 9, 2018, 49 cellular phones from Peoples and the search locations. The phones revealed hundreds of text messages from Peoples, his co-conspirator and his customers arranging for getting, buying and selling the heroin. The text messages showed Peoples was part of the conspiracy no from May 2015 until his arrest in January 2018.
Through the searches for the 49 cellular phones, law enforcement found links between cases involving 27 overdose victims- nine who died as a result of the overdose and 18 who survived.
Peoples faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years and a maximum of life in prison for conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute heroin, and a mandatory minimum of five years and a maximum of 40 years in prison for possession with intent to distribute heroin.
His sentencing is scheduled for October 16, 2018 at 3 p.m.