Pittsburgh man pleads guilty to drug possession in raid that sickened 18 officers
A Pittsburgh man pleaded guilty Monday to conspiracy and drug possession in connection with a large amount of a fentanyl analogue that was found at his West End home two years ago, according to federal authorities.
Anthony Lozito, 40, was arrested Aug. 7, 2017 during a raid that sent 18 Pittsburgh SWAT officers to a hospital after a table holding cyclopropyl fentanyl overturned, causing the powder to become airborne.
Sentencing is set for Jan. 21.
Lozito and three others were arrested when Pittsburgh police and state troopers helped federal investigators with serving search warrants. During one of the raids at Lozito’s Bond Street home, the table overturned, and the officers were hospitalized after experiencing dizziness and numbness. No one was hurt.
Federal authorities said they found large amounts of drugs and packaging paraphernalia at Lozito’s house. Investigators seized a total of 235 grams of cyclopropyl fentanyl during the raids, according to federal authorities.
Lozito will remain detained until sentencing.
Fentanyl is a powerful opioid painkiller. It can be illicitly produced overseas and then shipped into the United States where it has contributed to an explosion of drug overdose deaths in recent years. With a tweak of the molecular structure, a new form of fentanyl can be illicitly created in laboratories.
Fentanyl contributed to 875 drug overdose deaths in Allegheny County in 2017 and 2018, according to medical examiner statistics.
Renatta Signorini is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Renatta at 724-837-5374, [email protected] or via Twitter .