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Alleged dealer arrested after overdose death

A Medford man faces felony drug charges after police allegedly found messages from him on a phone belonging to a man who died of an apparent overdose.

Isaac Phillip Escoto, 23, made his initial court appearance Friday in Jackson County Circuit Court on charges of heroin-delivery and heroin-possession, accusing him of selling the drug to a 23-year-old Medford man less than a day before the man died, according to documents filed by the Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement task force.

At about 8 p.m. Wednesday, MADGE detectives arrested Escoto in the 3600 block of Highway 62 on warrants sparked by the overdose death.

The man’s family found him dead March 13 in the 800 block of Shafer Lane, according to police. From the man’s phone, police found messages indicating that Escoto had sold the man about $40 worth of heroin less than 24 hours before he was found, court documents filed by police say.

Circuit Court Judge David Hoppe set Escoto’s bail at $500,000, with conditions that include no early release unless he pays the required 10 percent of the bail amount.

Escoto was also charged with possessing heroin and oxycodone for user-amounts of drugs police found on him during his arrest, and for felon in possession of a firearm after police found a silver handgun in his vehicle, court documents say.

His next court appearance is set for March 29, court records show.

Escoto has four additional felony cases that date back to July 2017, including manufacturing, delivering and possessing heroin, unauthorized use of a vehicle, fourth-degree assault and recklessly endangering another person. He was sentenced to probation in 2015 on a felony heroin-possession conviction.

Reach Mail Tribune reporter Nick Morgan at 541-776-4471 or nmorgan@rosebudmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at @MTCrimeBeat.

Isaac Phillip Escoto