Date/Time of Offense: July 23, 2022
Offense(s)/Charge(s): Felony Death by Distribution
Location of Incident: 3898 Hickory Highway
Suspect(s): Dakoda Michael Drake, 26 Years Old
175 Lynns Lane
Statesville, North Carolina 28677
Sheriff Darren Campbell stated: On Saturday, July 23, 2022, Patrol Deputies with the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office responded to 3898 Hickory Highway west of Statesville in reference to a possible narcotics overdose.
Upon the arrival of the deputies and Iredell County EMS, it was determined that the victim, Julius Chance Gunter, 26 Years Old, was suffering from an apparent drug overdose. He was treated at the scene and transported to Iredell Memorial Hospital, where he later died.
Iredell County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Detectives were assigned to the investigation and attempted to identify any witnesses with whom the victim had contact prior to his death.
During the investigation, which included interviews along with a forensic examination of phone and social media records, the investigators identified Dakoda Michael Drake as the suspect who provided Fentanyl to the victim.
An autopsy was conducted at the North Carolina Medical Examiner’s Office. After months of waiting, the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office recently received the Toxicology Report indicating the victim's cause of death was confirmed as a Fentanyl overdose.
Based on all of the evidence gathered during this investigation, the investigators were able to obtain an arrest warrant for Drake for Felony Death by Distribution.
Dakoda Michael Drake was arrested on Friday, November 24, 2023. He was taken to the Iredell County Detention Center, where he was served with the arrest warrant. Drake then appeared before Magistrate M. Nethken, who issued a 350,000.00 dollar secured bond on this charge.