SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – A woman is on a mission to change California law after her brother accidentally overdosed without knowing what he was taking.
Allyssia Solorio’s family is still in shock and left without closure eight months after her brother’s death. She is putting that pain into action, calling for tougher laws on drug dealers to prevent the same tragedy from happening to someone else.READ MORE: Body Of Missing UC Davis Graduate Catherine Serou Found In Russia, Reports Say
“For us, that wasn’t enough, 23 wasn’t enough,” she explained.
Twenty-three years. That is all the time Solorio had with her baby brother, Mikael Tirado, after she says he accidentally overdosed last September. Solorio says he was poisoned with fentanyl.
“He was the heart of our family,” Solorio explained.
Solorio said her brother, the youngest of six siblings, was laid-off during the pandemic and fell into a depression. That’s when she says he started using drugs. She believes he didn’t know what he took the day he died.
“Unfortunately, he took his chance with that not knowing there was fentanyl going around,” she said.
According to Solorio, her brother took pills laced with Fentanyl. The medical examiner ruled it an accident. Solorio is now fighting to make sure other families don’t feel the same pain.
“I’m pretty sure if they were to investigate, they could hold someone accountable for this. It’s just because we don’t have that law, nothing is going to happen,” she said.READ MORE: Events Around Sacramento Celebrate First Nationally Recognized Juneteenth
In a petition gaining hundreds of signatures, Solorio is pushing for new laws that would make it easier to convict drug dealers of murder. It’s called drug-induced homicide, a law more than 20 states in the nation have implemented.
“It’s just ruled as an accident and that’s it. It’s like case closed, done deal and that doesn’t bring closure to us, that just leaves us with more questions,” said Solorio.
A similar proposal known as Alexandra’s law, or SB 350, failed to pass a Senate Public Safety Committee in March. The bill argued it would make it easier for district attorneys to charge drug dealers with murder, especially when pills are laced with other drugs, without having to prove intended malice.
“In the end, the user chose to do it, so it is going to be hard to punish the supplier for the death,” said Criminal Defense Attorney Justin Ward.
Ward explained even if such a law was in place, it might not have a significant impact.
“Even though we don’t have specific laws related to the supplying of drugs or drug-induced homicide, we have laws if you cause somebody’s death voluntary or involuntary, purposefully, you can go to prison,” said Ward.
But for big sister Allyssia Solorio, additional laws would make all the difference to finding closure.
“This petition, I just want to bring awareness to everybody” she explained. “Something has to change.”MORE NEWS: Saturday Night Fever: Enjoying A Night On The Town After California COVID Restrictions Lifted
In three days, Solorio’s petition has gathered over 900 signatures. She hopes the petition will draw the attention of state officials and lawmakers on Capitol Hill to spark change.