Milford man pleads guilty to selling heroin that officials say led to man's death

Ryan Russow, 29, of Milford, pleaded guilty Thursday in New Haven federal court to one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute heroin, according to Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut.

According to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s office, court documents and statements made in court indicate that from November 2013 to April 2014, Russow obtained heroin from a source in New Haven and then distributed the drug out of his residence on Stone Manor Drive to customers.

On March 12, 2014, Russow sold a number of bags of heroin, stamped “Much Better,” to R.P., 26, of Milford.  Later that day, R.P. was found deceased at his residence in Milford.  In R.P.’s room, law enforcement officers located two empty bags of heroin stamped “Much Better,” and two full bags bearing the same stamp, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Drug Enforcement Administration analysis confirmed that the full bags contained heroin with a purity level of approximately 76%, and the Connecticut Office of the Chief Medical Examiner concluded that R.P. died of heroin toxicity.

On March 19, 2014, the DEA executed a search warrant at Russow’s residence and seized more than $19,000 in cash, a digital scale and drug packaging materials, officials said.

Russow has been detained since his arrest on April 23.

Russow is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Janet Bond Arterton on Feb. 26, at which time he faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years.

Russow faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years on each count, officials said.

Thematter has been investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s Bridgeport High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Task Force and the Milford Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah P. Karwan.