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Feds bust drug ring linked to two Coeur d’Alene deaths

UPDATED: Tue., Oct. 26, 2021

Three men have been arrested for their suspected role in a large fentanyl drug ring that included 50,000 pills, a related overdose death in Coeur d'Alene and a botched drug deal that led to another person who was shot and killed.  (Uncredited)
Three men have been arrested for their suspected role in a large fentanyl drug ring that included 50,000 pills, a related overdose death in Coeur d'Alene and a botched drug deal that led to another person who was shot and killed. (Uncredited)

Federal investigators have arrested three men linked to the drug supply blamed in the overdose death of one Coeur d’Alene teenager and the separate shooting death of another North Idaho man.

Federal investigators on Oct. 15 filed charging documents the same day they arrested Matthew “Cheesy” Gudino-Pena in Tucson, Arizona.

Those same documents accuse Gudino-Pena of working with Hunter B. O’Mealy and Caleb Ryan Carr, who are suspected of leading a massive narcotics ring out of Tacoma that funneled perhaps 50,000 fentanyl-laced pills and other drugs to the Spokane area.

Federal authorities arrested O’Mealy on Oct. 13 and located Carr in a Tucson hotel two days later. Both times, Gudino-Pena was with each suspect. Gudino-Pena was taken into custody on Oct. 15 along with Carr.

“The investigation also identified a number of violent crimes perpetrated in the furtherance of their drug trafficking activities,” DEA special agent Jon Wiseman wrote. “To date, at least three violent shootings have been identified, including one homicide.”

On Sept. 25, according to court records, “Cheesy” Gudino-Pena and Carr learned the whereabouts of a man identified as Trequan Morton in Lakewood, Washington.

Carr made a video he posted to Snapchat of the shooting in which Morton suffered a bullet to the spine that could paralyze him from the waist down for life.

Under the video of the shooting, which involved more than 30 shots in eight seconds, Carr wrote: “Cheesy knock your head off like a (watermelon emoji),” according to court records.

Before the Lakewood shooting, investigators tracked drugs that were used by a high school freshman in Coeur d’Alene, who died in May 2021 from a fentanyl overdose.

They identified the supplier in that case as 19-year-old Matthew Holmberg.

“During the investigation into the overdose, Holmberg and an associate, Dennen Fitterer-Usher, 23, were implicated in the shooting death of Gabriel Casper on May 31, 2021, in Coeur d’Alene,” Wiseman wrote.

Fitterer-Usher and Holmberg, who both remain in custody in Idaho, claimed that the shooting resulted from a drug deal that went bad.

That investigation turned when a confidential informant identified the source of the drugs to a fake Tacoma address. When federal agents raided that address on July 30, they found thousands of blue counterfeit oxycodone hydrochloride pills laced with fentanyl.

The “confidential source” then identified the suppliers of the drugs that had been sold in the Coeur d’Alene cases as coming from O’Mealy and Carr, who is also a suspect in a separate shooting in the Seattle area in July 2020.

According to the drug investigation, Gudino-Pena provided a security escort to O’Mealy in August 2021 when he was traveling back to Washington after picking up more than 40,000 of the counterfeit oxycodone pills.

“Gudino-Pena further appeared in various snap chat videos, including videos where Gudino-Pena was firing what appears to be fully automatic illegal firearms,” Wiseman wrote.

Carr, who apparently liked making videos, filmed Gudino-Pena “and others with bags containing suspected (pills) in what appears to be a hotel room on Aug. 3, 2021,” court records state.

When federal agents arrested O’Mealy at a Tucson apartment on Oct. 13, they interviewed Gudino-Pena, who was there with O’Mealy.

“During the interview, Gudino-Pena denied any knowledge of drug trafficking and further denied any illegal involvement with Carr and O’Mealy,” Wiseman wrote.

Despite his assurances, agents arrested Gudino-Pena on Oct. 15 when they used a cell phone to track down Carr at a Tucson hotel.

Gudino-Pena currently faces one count of conspiracy to distribute 400 grams or more of fentanyl. He has not yet appeared in federal court in Spokane.

Charging documents for Gudino-Pena indicate that both O’Mealy and Carr were arrested on federal indictments, but those records were not available by computer search on Monday.

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