Police & Fire

Rahway's Rayford Charged with Distributing Fentanyl-laced Crack Cocaine that Killed 3 Rahway Residents

b813fac4049c470858af_Rayford.jpg
George Rayford of Rahway has been charged with dealing drugs that led to overdose deaths Credits: Union County Prosecutor's Office
b813fac4049c470858af_Rayford.jpg

RAHWAY, NJ - George Rayford, 38 of Rahway, has been arrested and charged with distributing crack cocaine that led to the death of three people and sent others to the hospital, it was announced Friday by Union County Prosecutor Michael A. Monahan.

“Considering the high levels of purity found in illegal drugs being sold throughout Union County and New Jersey, as well as the potential for those drugs to be laced with varying amounts of deadly substances such as fentanyl, purchasing and using them can be tantamount to playing Russian roulette,” acting Prosecutor Monahan said. “Thankfully, through the State’s strict liability statute, we have the means to ensure that those caught selling drugs that kill people face lengthy prison terms commensurate with their reckless actions.”

Rayford, who resides on the 1200 block of Whelan Place, is charged with dealing the fentanyl-laced crack cocaine that led to the deaths of three Rahway residents and numerous people being hospitalized during a 24-hour period last December.

Sign Up for E-News

Monahan announced that Rayford is charged with "three counts of strict liability for a drug-induced
death, a first-degree crime, as well as four counts of second-degree drug distribution within 500 feet of a public park and five related third-degree drug distribution and possession offenses."

According to the Union County Prosecutor's Office, a six-week investigation discovered that Rayford distributed "deadly quantities of the drugs out of his home on Friday, Dec. 22, 2017."

Union County Homicide Task For Supervisor Michael Henn, who is prosecuting the case, reported that 
Rayford distributed the deadly quantities of drugs. By the end of the night, 41-year-old Nicole Taylor, 53-year- old Kacina Vanderburg, and 67-year- old Harold Johnston, all Rahway residents, had overdosed on the drugs and died, Henn said.

The investigation was initiated by the Rahway Police Department and Detective James Crowell, and expanding to include the Homicide Task Force, Union County Sheriff’s Office, and Woodbridge Police Department. The investigation revealed that an unknown number of others also overdosed on the drugs that night, but survived.

Rayford was arrested at his home early Friday morning without incident and lodged in Union County Jail pending a first appearance today and a detention hearing to be held next week.

Convictions on first-degree criminal charges are commonly punishable by 10 to 20 years in state prison.
These criminal charges are mere accusations. Each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

Anyone with information about this matter is being urged to contact Detective Crowell at 732-827- 2115 or Prosecutor’s Office Detective Nicholas Falcicchio at 908-721- 8186.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

Mountainside

Upcoming Events

Sun, May 20, 8:00 AM

Applebee's Clark Commons, Clark

Brendan's Meadows Flapjack Fundraiser

Food & Drink Giving Back

Sun, May 20, 12:00 PM

Trailside Nature & Science Center in the Watchung Reservation, Mountainside

29th Annual Spring Garden Fair & Plant ...

Green Home & Garden

Sun, May 20, 2:00 PM

Miller-Cory House Museum, Westfield

History of Silhouettes & Craft for Children

Other

Sun, May 20, 3:00 PM

Ridge High School, Basking Ridge

NJ Youth Chorus Spring Concert

Arts & Entertainment

Carousel_image_d95868a30ee9ef39c254_lwv_pr_2018_marijuana_flyer_for__nptv

Mon, May 21, 7:30 PM

New Providence

Marijuana: Decriminalize? Legalize?

Health & Wellness

Video Shows School Board Member In Altercation With Police at Traffic Stop in South Orange

May 16, 2018

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ - South Orange Maplewood School Board Member Stephanie Lawson-Muhammad got into an altercation with a South Orange police officer who stopped her for speeding last month, in which she used profanity, complained when she was issued a ticket and called South Orange Police Chief Kyle Kroll “a skinhead cop.”

Lawson-Muhammad also appeared to suggest that she would ...

Bee Day at Hanson Park!!

May 19, 2018

Please join the Hanson Park Conservancy on Saturday, June 23rd for Bee Day at Hanson Park!  At 2:00 PM Grant Stiles from Stiles Honey will be sharing his knowledge of bees with his presentation, “Fundamentals of Beekeeping and the Importance of Honey Bees in Our Society.”  Bring your blankets and chairs and enjoy the beautiful surroundings as Mr. Stiles answers all of your ...

Anjali Mehrotra's Statement Regarding the Recent Complaint Filed Against the Borough of Mountainside

May 17, 2018

The recent complaint filed against the Borough of Mountainside, asserts allegations that, if true, we can all agree are most disturbing. The nature of the allegations dictates that we, the residents of Mountainside, take them seriously and ensure that they are carefully investigated.

Our sworn officers and dedicated employees should never be subject to the types of behavior that are alleged, ...