‘A crisis’: SC Gov. gets bill with stiffer penalties for fentanyl trafficking

FORT MILL, S.C. — A South Carolina mother is suffering a bittersweet victory in the legislature after losing her son to the drug fentanyl.

Wednesday, South Carolina’s House passed a bill that would create a mandatory minimum sentence for people who traffic fentanyl. It is now waiting to be signed by the governor.

Channel 9′s Tina Terry spoke with parents, as well as those in law enforcement, who say this is long overdue. Holly Alsobrooks, along with dozens of other families, have been pushing lawmakers for tougher penalties against drug dealers.

“I hope that all of our children are proud of us because we certainly miss them. And we don’t want our loss to be for nothing,” Alsobrooks said.

Alsobrooks said her son, Cody Bryant, died in 2020 after taking a fentanyl pill. He was just 25 years old.

With the bill, a conviction for trafficking four grams of fentanyl, or any fentanyl-related substance, would require a mandatory minimum sentence of seven years.

Fourteen grams or more of fentanyl, but less than twenty-eight grams, would require a mandatory minimum sentence of twenty-five years.

“This was critical to get this passed,” Chester County Sheriff Max Dorsey told Channel 9.

Dorsey said these tough penalties don’t exist under current South Carolina law.

“You could be in possession of 28 grams of heroin and face a mandatory min of 25 years. You could have a truckload of fentanyl and before this bill, you’d only be facing five years in prison,” Dorsey explained.

While this bill can not turn back time, Alsobroks said it could save other young people.

“We can’t just sit back and watch this keep happening because this is definitely a crisis,” Alsobrooks said.

The bill will be going to Governor Henry McMaster’s desk next. Alsobrooks said she expects him to sign it.

VIDEO: Former police officer accused of trafficking drugs, including LSD, in Stanly County

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