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UPDATED: Waterford police charge Windham man with manslaughter in connection with fentanyl overdose death

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Police on Thursday arrested a 35-year-old Windham man on manslaughter and drug charges, the result of an investigation into an overdose death in May, Waterford police said Thursday on their Facebook page.

Evan Barile of 332 Bricktop Road was arrested on a warrant and charged with second-degree manslaughter, conspiracy to commit the sale of a controlled substance, sale of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance, police said. He was held in lieu of a $350,000 bond.

Police say the incident is still under investigation and they expect additional arrests.

Last May, Waterford police began investigating the overdose death of a 26-year-old man who died at a home in town, police said. The autopsy showed the cause of death as intoxication from a combination of fentanyl, heroin, clonazepam and oxycodone.

Waterford police said they began investigating with members of the Norwich Police Department and the FBI's Safe Streets Task Force to find the source of the fentanyl-laced narcotics. Over several months, investigators connected suspects to the victim and then obtained arrest warrants.

According to an arrest warrant affidavit from Waterford police Sgt. Richard Avdevich, Barile was identified as the drug dealer who sold heroin/fentanyl to the deceased less than 24 hours before the death. Avdevich's investigation involved the use of a confidential informant who previously had purchased heroin/fentanyl from Barile.

Avdevich coordinated with the informant, and Officers Reynaldo Torres and Andrew Pfeiffer of the Drug Enforcement Administration, to conduct a controlled purchase of heroin/fentanyl from Barile, the affidavit said. Police also obtained a search and seizure warrant for subscriber information and Messenger conversations throughout May from Barile's Facebook profile.

Police submitted the warrant to Facebook on Nov. 2, which sent the information on Dec. 1. The affidavit said that in the messages, Avdevich recognized street-name references to fentanyl. Authorities on Dec. 4 submitted a search warrant to Verizon for subscriber information, which Verizon provided on Feb. 5.

A second affidavit showed that the investigation also involved going through call logs, text messages and social media accounts on the phone that belonged to the man who died. The day before his death, the man had said in messages to a redacted recipient that he didn't want the drug to be fentanyl.

Both arrest warrants for Barile were submitted Feb. 16 and authorized Feb. 18.

The Willimantic Police Department assisted Waterford police in arresting Barile, who is scheduled to appear in court in Danielson on Friday.

This isn't Barile's first arrest. According to court records, Willimantic police arrested him in 2011 on charges of second-degree breach of peace, second-degree failure to appear in court and violation of probation; in 2014 on charges of third-degree assault and interfering with an officer/resisting arrest; and in 2018 on a charge of second-degree failure to appear in court. Barile pleaded guilty to all charges.

Waterford police ask anyone with information related to narcotics, or other illegal activity, to contact the department at (860) 442-9451 or via the anonymous tip line at (860) 437-8080.

e.moser@theday.com

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