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Posted Saturday, March 2nd, 2019

Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp, Chief of Investigations Stephen F. Wilson, Jr. and Jefferson Township Police Chief Sean Conrad announce the filing of an additional charge related to a fatal drug overdose that occurred on June 21, 2018.Morris Prosecutor: New Charge in Fatal Overdose Case in Jefferson

On that day, law enforcement responded to a report of an unresponsive male in Jefferson. The victim, who was pronounced deceased at the scene, was identified as Eric Malmberg.  The investigation would reveal that Malmberg was the victim of a fatal drug overdose.

Through a subsequent investigation, it is alleged that Norberto Rodriguez, Jr., 20, of Wayne Township in Passaic County, distributed heroin/fentanyl to Malmberg at a location in Wayneon or about June 18, 2018. It is further alleged that the ingestion of the heroin/fentanyl distributed by Rodriguez to Malmberg resulted in Malmberg’s death.

Rodriguez has been charged with Strict Liability for Drug-Induced Death. State law provides that any person who manufactures, distributes or dispenses any of a number of controlled dangerous substances is strictly liable for a death that results from the injection, inhalation, or ingestion of that substance.

Morris Prosecutor: New Charge in Fatal Overdose Case in JeffersonThis is a first-degree crime, which is punishable by up to 20 years in state prison and is subject to an 85 percent parole ineligibility requirement of the No Early Release Act.

Rodriguez, who was charged last year with drug-related offenses stemming from this investigation, was lodged in the Morris County Correctional Facility pending future court proceedings.  .

Multiple law enforcement agencies have been actively involved in this investigation, including the Jefferson Township Police Department, Morris County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation, and the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes and Special Enforcement Units.

If anyone has any information related to this investigation, they are encouraged to call the Major Crimes Unit of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office at 973-285-6200.

Inquiries should be directed to Public Information Officer Peter DiGennaro at [email protected] or 973-829-8159.