The following story is pulled from a release from the Northern District of Texas U.S. Attorney’s Office.

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — A Wichita Falls drug dealer who sold fentanyl to a 27-year-old who suffered a fatal overdose was sentenced to more than 17 years in federal prison.

Lionel Henderson, 33, and his former girlfriend, Shameka Tanee Mason, 29, were first charged in July 2022. Henderson pleaded guilty in November 2022 to possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance and was sentenced Friday, March 31, by U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor to 210 months in federal prison. 

Mason pleaded guilty in August 2022 to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance and was sentenced in December to 24 months in federal prison.

In court documents, the pair admitted they knowingly sold counterfeit oxycodone pills laced with fentanyl to an individual who later sold them to his 27-year-old cousin, J.D.K.  J.D.K. split the drugs with his coworker.  

On June 12, 2020, both J.D.K. and his coworker overdosed; the coworker received medical attention and recovered, but J.D.K. died of drug toxicity.  

During an interview at a Denton hospital, the coworker told investigators that he and J.D.K. split what appeared to be a 30mg oxycodone tablet. He said some of the remaining pills were stored at J.DK.’s home in Graham, Oklahoma.

Agents searched the bedroom and recovered one round blue tablet marked M/30, three green rectangle tablets marked S/90/3 and one pink capsule with illegible markings. The blue M/30 – which appeared identical to brand name oxycodone – instead tested positive for butyryl fentanyl.

Agents then cultivated a confidential source who identified Lionel Henderson as the source of the blue M/30s. He went through Henderson’s girlfriend, Shameka Mason, to arrange a meeting with an undercover agent at Mason’s residence in Wichita Falls.

On June 25, agents met with Henderson and Mason and purchased five M/30 tablets, which later tested positive for fentanyl and acetaminophen.

They then executed a search warrant of Henderson’s home, where they recovered 497 blue M/30s that later tested positive for fentanyl and acetaminophen, 1,035 multicolored tablets that later tested positive for ecstasy and multiple firearms, including one that was stolen. 

A month later, agents interviewed Mason, who admitted that she and Henderson had been dealing illicit substances in December 2018. They began with alprazolam, or “bars,” then escalated to ecstasy and later to M/30s, which she called “percs,” in December 2019.

She claimed she did not know where Henderson obtained the pills, but she admitted they sold the pills for $25 apiece.

In plea papers, Henderson admitted that he had been selling fentanyl-laced counterfeit pills since March 2020.

The Drug Enforcement Administration’s Dallas Field Division, the Carter County Sheriff’s Office, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation and the Oklahoma City Medical Examiner’s Office conducted the investigation.

Assistant U.S. Attorney P.J. Meitl is prosecuting the case.