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Sarasota man charged after selling powerful opioid to addict who overdosed

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SARASOTA, FL (WWSB) - A 38-year-old Sarasota man was arrested Thursday after he sold Carfentanil to a recovering addict, causing him to overdose in January.

Deputies with the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office responded to a halfway house in the 4600 block of School Avenue in Sarasota in January for a Heroin overdose.

Upon arrival, first responders administered an opioid-reversal medication and transported the patient to a local hospital where he recovered. During an interview with detectives, the patient said he had purchased the drugs from Michael Bennett of 4040 Proctor Rd.

Text messages between the patient and Bennett revealed how Bennett warned him to slowly inject only a small amount of the Heroin because it was actually Carfentanil, an opioid 10,000 times more potent than morphine.

According to deputies, they determined Bennett knew about the strength of the drug and without the aid of first responders, the patient would have likely died from the overdose.

Bennett was arrested Thursday and charged with a single count of culpable negligence, a misdemeanor. He was released on $500 bond.

Bennett is a prolific offender with dozens of prior arrests in Sarasota County for crimes including trafficking in Hydrocodone, possession of Marijuana with intent to sell, aggravated battery and aggravated assault.

The investigation is ongoing.