News

Second Crystal Lake man charged with drug-induced homicide tied to fatal overdose last summer

A 24-year-old Crystal Lake man became the second man charged with drug-induced homicide and criminal drug conspiracy in connection with the death of a 27-year-old man last summer, court records show.

Jacob A. Stealy, of the 100 block of Surrey Lane, is accused of providing fentanyl to Colton Steiner, who later fatally overdosed, according to the criminal complaint. A warrant for his arrest has been issued, court records show.

Ryan George James, 25, of the 3600 block of Smoke Tree Lane, was charged in March in connection with Steiner’s death. He pleaded not guilty to the two charges in April and his case is ongoing.

Both drug-induced homicide and criminal drug conspiracy are Class X felonies. If convicted, they typically carry sentences of six to 30 years in prison and are not probational.

Prosecutors alleged in a motion filed in March that James told members of the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Task Force that around the time of Steiner’s death, he provided fentanyl pills to Stealy while Steiner was in the passenger seat of James’ vehicle.

Cellphone tower data shows that Steiner and Stealy then traveled to James’ home and later returned to Steiner’s house the day Steiner died, according to the motion. Steiner did not leave his home again.

According to the motion prosecutors filed in March, James told police he had been purchasing about 100 pressed fentanyl pills every one or two weeks and selling them. James identified Lucious Hemphill as “his exclusive source for the pills,” prosecutors said in the motion.

Officers then arranged for Hemphill to bring 100 fentanyl pills to a designated location, and Hemphill arrived there with 123 pills that field tested positive for fentanyl, according to the motion.

Hemphill was subsequently charged with possession and possession with intent to deliver less than 15 grams of fentanyl.

Hemphill, 20, of the 200 block of East Saint Charles Road, Carol Stream also was charged Monday with being a part of a calculated criminal drug conspiracy with Stealy and James, according to the criminal complaint. Hemphill has not been charged in connection with Steiner’s death.

James also told officers that Stealy would sometimes drive him to meet with Hemphill or go on his behalf to pick up the drugs, according to the motion. Prosecutors said James’ phone showed messages between Hemphill setting up transactions with the three of them.

Stealy was not in custody as of Wednesday and did not have an attorney listed in McHenry County court records. An attempt to reach James’ attorney Wednesday was not successful.

Hemphill, who also has a warrant issued for his arrest, did not have an attorney listed in his most recent case. An attempt to reach his public defender in the possession case was unsuccessful.