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Minnesota man accused of giving fatal drugs to woman charged in federal court

Anthony John Tozer

GRAND FORKS -- An East Grand Forks man accused of selling fentanyl-laced drugs linked to a woman’s death now faces federal charges.

Anthony John Tozer, 32, asked a judge on Thursday to dismiss his case in Grand Forks District Court, saying he has been charged federally with causing the death of 20-year-old Faith Burns in Grand Forks last year.

Tozer has signed a federal plea agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, admitting he sold drugs mixed with heroin and fentanyl to Burns, who died in mid-December from a drug overdose after ingesting the drugs, according to court documents.

A criminal complaint filed in Grand Forks District Court days after Burns’ death detail how she traveled with an acquaintance to the Fairfield Inn in Grand Forks to pick up what she thought was heroin. She ingested the drugs in an apartment at 901 University Ave., overdosed and died, court documents said.

Syringes from the scene of the crime tested positive for fentanyl, according to a police report.

Tozer was charged in Grand Forks District Court with delivery of fentanyl, a Class B felony that carries a maximum punishment of up to 10 years in prison. In the federal case, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

He is expected to appear Monday in Fargo for a federal plea hearing.

The Grand Forks case was continued to Aug. 23, though the Grand Forks County State’s Attorney Office sometimes dismisses its cases when federal prosecutors file charges.

Federal court documents hinted that others may be involved in the case, but the U.S. Attorney’s Office did not name any other defendants in Tozer’s charging documents.

The investigation is ongoing, Grand Forks County State’s Attorney David Jones said.

April Baumgarten

April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, and covers crime and education. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family raises registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college, she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as a city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.

Have a story idea? Contact Baumgarten at 701-780-1248.

(701) 780-1248
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