Three charged with supplying fentanyl-laced pill that caused Falls Township woman’s overdose death

After 40-year-old Amanda Shields died of a suspected drug overdose in her Falls Township home on Aug. 11, 2020, Bucks County Detectives and Falls Township Police began a lengthy investigation to find out where she got the fentanyl-laced Percocet pill that killed her.

The investigation, which included numerous interviews and a forensic analysis of digital evidence, concluded that her husband supplied the pill to Shields, and he got the pills from two other men. In the past two weeks, all three were charged with drug delivery resulting in death and other offenses.

Ryan Shields, 39, of Falls Township, was charged on Jan. 6, and Patric Hish, 33, of Brookhaven, Delaware County, and Francis Nungesser, 43, of Morrisville, were charged on Tuesday, Jan. 18.

All three face the following charges:

  • Drug delivery resulting in death
  • Manufacture, delivery, or possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance 
  • Criminal use of a communication facility 
  • Involuntary manslaughter 
  • Recklessly endangering another person

Officers with the Falls Township Police Department were dispatched at 9:36 p.m. on Aug. 11, 2020, to the home of Ryan and Amanda Shields at 815 Trenton Road where she had died after taking what she thought was a Percocet pill.

The pill was actually fentanyl disguised as a Percocet pill, the Bucks County Detectives investigation found, and an autopsy determined her cause of death was fentanyl, ethanol, and alprazolam toxicity. 

The Bucks County Detectives investigation revealed that prior to his wife’s death, Ryan Shields was delivered 10 suspected fentanyl pills from his supplier Patric Hish, who was living in Yardley at the time, and Hish received them from his supplier, Francis Nungesser.

During the investigation, detectives spoke to a man who bought two of the pills from Shields on Aug. 11, 2020, and after taking half a pill, got a very strong high and “believed he was going to die from ingesting the pill.” He told detectives the pill had the same shape, size, and color of a 30mg Percocet pill.

 Further investigation found that Shields had provided pills to his wife in the past.

This case was investigated by Falls Township Police and Detectives with the Bucks County Detectives Drug Strike Force.  It is assigned for prosecution to Deputy District Attorney Megan K. Stricker.

Media Contact: Manuel Gamiz Jr., 215.348.6298, mgamiz@buckscounty.org

Criminal charges are allegations subject to proof in court. Defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.