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McKinney family mourning loss of son to Fentanyl has message for North Texas families

“He wasn’t just another drug addict. He was extraordinary and the drugs took over,” Lindsay said of her 17-year-old son Mitchel.

MCKINNEY, Texas — Lindsay Pultz was finally ready to share her story because her son Mitchel’s life mattered and because not enough is known about fentanyl.

Her son will forever be 17 years old and his death is a very difficult subject for her to discuss. “Mitch” died last September of a fentanyl overdose.

“He wasn’t just another drug addict. He was extraordinary and the drugs took over,” Lindsay said.

Mitch was described as an all-around athlete who loved baseball, football, football – any sport, it didn’t matter. Lindsay said her son was funny and silly, but also suffered from opioid addiction.

“This was a distraught family who really did everything right,” said Shannon White, who works for Grace to Change, an outpatient drug treatment center in McKinney.

The Pultz family sought help wherever they could when they discovered Mitch had overdosed. The hospitals they took him to never tested him for the drug that ultimately killed him. The Drug Enforcement Agency describes fentanyl as a controlled substance similar to morphine but about 100 times more potent.

“No one has ever tested for fentanyl. No doctor or hospital has ever mentioned that fentanyl could be a part of it,” she said.

White tells WFAA it’s not entirely clear why most hospitals aren’t able to test for it despite the exponential rise in cases. The Pultzes had installed cameras, set limits and even purchased fentanyl test strips online. The family tells WFAA that early one morning, Mitch used Instagram and code words to find and meet a dealer.

“He went to his apartment, took the medication, then walked home,” Lindsay said.

The medication Mitch took that day contained lethal doses of fentanyl. Lindsay still remembers the frantic moments when her husband Kevin found Mitch in his bedroom. At first they thought he was asleep. She remembers Kevin trying CPR and the couple pacing back and forth in the house while investigators and a coroner worked in the house.

September 18, 2023 will be a day they will remember forever. The next date they will remember forever is the day, they say, that McKinney police arrested the woman allegedly responsible for their son’s death.

“It took them 218 days to get it. I was counting…I was counting,” she said.

With the help of McKinney detectives and some personal research, the dealer was arrested. Lindsey identified her as Ciana Armour, a woman in her 20s who now faces high charges of fabricated delivery and murder. As of Friday evening, Armor did not appear on the Collin County inmate list. It appears she has bonded. WFAA has made a number of requests for information and confirmation from McKinney police and has not received a response.

“She lost a child and this mother lost a child. Addiction permeates everything,” White said.

Late last year, Gov. Greg Abbott signed a bill allowing prosecutors to pursue murder charges if the defendant played a role in a fentanyl overdose death.

“As a mother, someone’s child is going away for murder. But at the same time…she killed our child,” Lindsay said.

Lindsay won’t be getting her adorable Mother’s Day message from Mitch this year. She says her middle child was usually the first to text her.

“He was saying how sorry he was. And he was really trying to get better,” Lindsay cried, recalling one of his last text messages.

Mitch’s story doesn’t end there. The family will not allow it. They say people need to be educated about fentanyl. Lindsay says schools, churches and cities need to educate the public about the dangers of fentanyl.

“I just want other parents to know they’re not alone,” she said.