A 15-year-old boy has avoided jail after selling ecstasy pills to a 13-year-old on Snapchat who died after a ‘severe reaction’ from the Class A drug.
The teenage dealer — who cannot be named due to his age — pleaded guilty to supplying class A drugs following the death of Carson Price in Ystrad Mynach, near Caerphilly.
Carson was found unconscious in Ystrad Mynach Park surrounded by his friends, having swallowed three of the green DK-branded tablets shaped like the head of cartoon gorilla Donkey Kong.
He died at University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff, having suffered an ‘adverse reaction’ to the pills.
On Tuesday, the defendant — who was 14 at the time of the incident — sat beside his mother at Cwmbran Youth Court as District Judge Martin Brown described his actions as a ‘heinous and terrible crime’.
Carson Price, penis enlargement solutions 13, (pictured) took the Donkey Kong-branded ecstasy tablets while gathering with friends in his local park
Asked if he had anything to say to the court, the boy said quietly: ‘It was very foolish what I’ve done, and I’m very sorry.’
Prosecutor Mike Williams said the teenager had arranged the sale of three pills for £25 over Snapchat before meeting Carson, who was on his way to meet his friends, outside a Texaco garage in Pontllanfraith on April 12 last year.
Carson later went to the park where he offered some of the pills to friends who declined.
Mr Williams said: ‘Friends of Carson described seeing the tablets in question, which were green in colour and in the shape of Donkey Kong, with ‘DK’ on them.
Forensics officers at Ystrad Mynach Park in south Wales. A coroner ruled he died as a result of taking ‘excessive’ amounts of ecstasy
Carson was found unconscious in Ystrad Mynach Park surrounded by his friends, having swallowed three of the green DK-branded tablets shaped like the head of cartoon gorilla Donkey Kong
‘One of the pills had some froth coming out of the top, and was described as glistening like a crystal.’
He said one friend asked Carson why he was taking the pills, and he replied ‘Because it was Friday’ and that he ‘liked the buzz’.
Just after 7pm that evening Carson became ‘seriously ill’ and paramedics were called to the scene and took him to hospital.
Mr Williams said: ‘The post-mortem revealed the fact his death was associated with an adverse reaction to the ecstasy pills.’
A previous hearing heard that the teenage dealer had tried to source more drugs from his suppliers days after Carson’s death, and sentencing was adjourned for a report after it heard he had also been found in possession of a blade a short time after his arrest.
Will Bebb, defending, said: ‘He accepts the consequences of his actions and that he caused immeasurable, lasting pain.
The funeral of Carson Price takes place at Gelligaer Church. Carson’s mother Tatum Price, 39, appealed for other youngsters to reject the drugs — which are being sold for as little as £2-a-pill
‘It’s something that has traumatised him.
He has genuine feelings of remorse in this instance.’
Judge Brown said he was bound by ‘a limited sentencing exercise’ due to the boy’s age so he had no power to impose a prison sentence.
He said: ‘That exercise is a clear attempt to try and redress the situation. But it’s impossible, and I can’t for one moment contemplate trying to redress the trauma, harm, distress and pain this whole saga has caused.
‘It’s right that I describe this as a tragic accident, but of course one that’s risen out of a commission of a criminal offence.
That offence was you selling class A drugs.’
The boy was sentenced to a 12-month referral order which will require him to complete rehabilitative and restorative activities.
Carson collapsed and was found ‘in and out of consciousness’ before friends raised the alarm
Judge Brown warned the boy that any future offences within that time or failure to work with the youth offending service could see his sentence revoked and ‘revisited’ in court.
Following the hearing, Carson’s family said in a statement the sentence had ‘fallen short’ of reflecting the seriousness of the teenage dealer’s crime.
They said: ‘As a family we appreciate all the hard work which has gone into this investigation, which is still continuing.
‘No sentence can ever be sufficient to alleviate the pain and suffering we have experienced.
‘We are fully aware that this sentence reflects the age of the offender, however, we feel that it has fallen some way short of sending the right message to all children and young people that taking or dealing drugs is extremely dangerous and has severe consequences.
Carson swallowed three of the tablets shaped like the head of cartoon gorilla Donkey Kong
‘It remains frustrating to our family that the adults, who introduce these drugs into the social networks of our children, are yet to be charged or convicted.’
DI Ian Bartholomew, of Gwent Police’s Major Incident Team, said: ‘Today’s hearing is not the conclusion of this investigation and specialist officers will continue to provide support for Carson’s family.’
Gwent Police said a 22-year-old man from Caerphilly who was arrested on suspicion of the supply of class A drugs remains released under investigation.
In May this year, an inquest into Carson’s death found he died from a ‘violent reaction’ to an ‘excessive’ amount of ecstasy.
A vigil was held in his honour at Ystrad Mynach Park, organised by friends and attended by his parents and brother.
His family said in a statement at the time: ‘On Friday 12th April, our lives changed forever when our little boy was taken away from us.
‘Carson was bright and caring, kind and loving.
He was a cheeky little boy. He was the best big brother to Coby and was loved by so many.’