Brandon Daniel Davis, 50, of Sandstone has been charged with felony third degree murder after allegedly selling the illegal narcotics that caused a man’s death in Hinckley on March 29. 

A single charge of third-degree murder was filed in Pine County Court on May 13 against Davis. The charge carries with it a maximum penalty of 25 years in prison, a $40,000 fine or both. 

According to the criminal complaint, on March 29, at approximately 11:33 p.m., deputies from the Pine County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched to a residence on Southfork Road in Hinckley on a report that a male was overdosing on controlled substances. 

A woman met the officer and directed him to a bedroom where a male, identified as Joshua Matthew Bloom, 26, was found to be laying on his back on the bed while another man was attempting to revive him with CPR. The man said that they had already administered Naloxone. The deputy determined that Bloom was not breathing and had no pulse. He moved him to the floor and took over CPR. A second deputy arrived and assisted with CPR and administering additional Nalaxone until the ambulance crew arrived and took over his care. 

Bloom was unable to be revived by the paramedics and was declared deceased at 12:14 a.m. on March 30.

The deputy spoke to the man who said that Bloom had used heroin and must have had about $20 worth of heroin. He denied knowing where the heroin came from. The man said he and the woman had been out in the garage, then he went inside and found Bloom face down on the bed. He recognized it as an overdose so he administered Naloxone, called 911, and started CPR.

A deputy recovered a baggie containing a white powdery substance consistent with controlled substances from Bloom’s pocket. This was later determined to contain .327 grams methamphetamine. The deputy saw a roll of tinfoil on the nightstand and a small piece of tinfoil with a black residue consistent with burned controlled substance on the edge of the bed. A pen snort tube was located on the bed. There was a green lighter next to it.

Investigators began to review the location data and social media accounts of Bloom. Two locations of interest stood out, the first being a Brook Park business Bloom was at the afternoon of March 29. The second was a location on 1st Street in Hinckley where multiple people had been living, including Davis. Bloom was there the evening of March 29.

A Pine County investigator reviewed Bloom’s Facebook records and noted several conversations of interest that occurred on March 29.

In one of those conversations described in court documents, Bloom says to Davis, , “need some slow you still over there.” Davis responds, “yep, how much, I got u.” Bloom responds, “I got 40.cpl fat pts.” Davis responds, “I got u.” Bloom then tells him he’ll be there in about five minutes.

Bloom also has conversations with other people asking about who has “slow.” 

The investigator was aware through his training and experience that the context of these conversations showed Bloom and others were looking to obtain controlled substances. The investigator was familiar with Davis through his work with the East Central Drug and Violent Offender Task Force, and believed he has been known to sell controlled substances in the Pine County area.

On April 2, a search warrant was executed at Davis’ Hinckley residence. From the bedroom identified as being where Davis had been sleeping, officers located a digital scale next to Davis’s car keys, a digital scale on the headboard of the bed, and a Sony camera case containing two bags of suspected heroin. The substances were submitted to the BCA for testing. The analyst identified one bag as containing .675 grams heroin and the other bag contained .296 grams Fentanyl.

The man who had been giving Bloom CPR on March 29 told investigators that he and Bloom had smoked heroin together earlier that day.  The man then gave Bloom $80 to get more heroin. He said they went back to the Hinckley residence and Bloom purchased heroin from Davis in the kitchen. He got two different kinds – one kind of heroin was the same as Bloom had purchased previously that day and the other, bigger, purchase was a different kind. He said he and Bloom also smoked some methamphetamine. 

An autopsy was performed and Bloom’s cause of death was determined to be mixed drug toxicity from Fentanyl, heroin, and methamphetamine.

According to the Minnesota Department of Health, fentanyl-related overdoses increased 81% in 2020 compared to 2019 and Fentanyl was involved in 82% of all opiod- involved deaths.

On Aug. 12, 2020, a Confidential Reliable Informant under supervision by officers from the East Central Drug and Violent Offender Task Force purchased suspected heroin from Davis in Sandstone. The substance that was purported to be heroin and sold to the informant by Davis was sent to the BCA for testing and was determined to actually be .15 grams of Fentanyl.

On Sept. 23, 2020, Davis was found in possession of suspected heroin in Pine County. The substance was submitted to the BCA for testing and determined to be 30.336 grams of Fentanyl.

The East Central Drug and Violent Offender Task Force has received information that Davis continues to be involved in the sale of controlled substances, with a credible report received within the week of May 10. A warrant was requested due to the significant public safety risk Davis poses.

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