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Brevard woman sentenced to 15 years for fentanyl sale resulting in death

A 26-year-old Brevard woman was sentenced to 15 years in prison on Monday for trafficking narcotics, including fentanyl that resulted in an overdose death, U.S. Attorney Dena J. King announced.

U.S. District Judge Max Cogburn sentenced Victoria Kerrigan Irby in the case.

Robert J. Murphy, Special Agent in Charge of the Atlanta Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), which oversees the Asheville Post of Duty, and Asheville Police Chief David Zack joined King in making the announcement.
According to filed court documents and today’s sentencing hearing, between January 2018 and June 2019, Irby was involved in the distribution of narcotics in and around Buncombe County. Court records show that Irby was trafficking various types of narcotics but primarily engaged in the distribution of fentanyl. According to court documents, Irby distributed pure or uncut fentanyl knowing that it was causing her customers to overdose.

As discussed in court on Monday, Irby had to revive multiple customers that had overdosed on fentanyl she was distributing. On May 23, 2019, Irby sold fentanyl to a victim identifed in court documents as D.F., which resulted in the victim’s overdose death. Irby continued to sell fentanyl even after the victim’s overdose death.
On April 4, 2022, Irby pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute a quantity of heroin, a quantity of marijuana, a quantity of fentanyl, a quantity of methamphetamine and a quantity of buprenorphine, and distribution of a quantity of heroin, a quantity of marijuana, a quantity of fentanyl, a quantity of methamphetamine, and a quantity of buprenorphine. As part of her plea, Irby also admitted to knowingly and intentionally distributing a mixture or substance that contained fentanyl to D.F. on May 23, 2019, and admitted that D.F.’s death resulted from his use of the fentanyl she supplied.
In imposing Irby’s 15-year prison sentence, Judge Cogburn noted that Irby’s conduct of continuing to sell fentanyl she knew was causing her customers to overdose and her continuing to sell fentanyl even after the fentanyl death occurred was particularly troubling.

Irby is currently in federal custody and will be transferred to the custody of the federal Bureau of Prisons upon designation of a federal facility.
The DEA in Asheville and the Asheville Police Department handled the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Kent, of the federal prosecutor's office in Asheville, prosecuted the case.