Case continued for Saugus woman charged in fentanyl OD 

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An L.A. County Sheriff's Department badge

A 25-year-old Saugus woman who has pleaded not guilty to two charges connected to the death of an 18-year-old Santa Clarita Valley resident is due back in court in July, federal officials said Thursday. 

U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson granted a continuance earlier this month in charges that stem from the fentanyl poisoning of Jax Markley. 

Skylar Mitchell stands charged with two counts: the Nov. 5 sale of fentanyl to Markley, which led to Markley’s Nov. 5 death; and Mitchell allegedly was found with fentanyl three days after Markley’s death.   

Markley was found deceased at home on Heirloom Place on Nov. 6, 2022, according to investigators’ reports of the death. Markley had graduated from Valencia High School just months earlier.  

Mitchell sought a hearing for bail Feb. 5. In denying bail, Wilson ruled “no condition or combination of conditions that would give the court confidence that the defendant will meet all requirements of bail or guarantee her appearance at any future proceeding.”  

The maximum exposure for the charges facing Mitchell is 40 years, a spokesman for the Department of Justice wrote in a December email. 

The prosecution is the second local investigation from a Sheriff’s Department Opioid Overdose Response Task Force to be brought before a judge.   

The first case involved Dominick Alvarado, a 22-year-old who pleaded guilty in November to the same charges facing Mitchell. 

In that case, U.S. District Judge John F. Walter sentenced Alvarado to 15 years and eight months in prison, which was more than three years above what prosecutors asked for in the terms of his plea deal. 

Federal investigators, utilizing the Opioid Overdose Response Task Force, linked Alvarado to two overdose deaths that happened in 2022: Alyssa Dies, 17, and Cameron Kouleyan, 18.  

Sheriff’s Department officials said their cases were brought to federal prosecutors in order to seek stiffer penalties on behalf of the victims and to deter future sales by sending a message to would-be dealers. 

Mitchell’s next court date in the matter is scheduled for July 16. 

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