Iowa parents offer reward to find fentanyl dealer after daughter overdoses

Published: Aug. 27, 2022 at 1:18 AM EDT
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(CNN) - An Iowa couple is hoping to get justice for their daughter following a lethal overdose.

They are offering a $30,000 reward for information leading to the dealer who sold her the lethal drugs.

Robert and Karletha Gilliam are mourning the loss of their only child, 22-year-old Ciara, who died on Aug. 23rd.

“The preliminary investigation, it looked like an accidental overdose of fentanyl,” Robert Gilliam said.

The couple went on Facebook and made their first offer at $10,000, then $20,000 to whomever can identify the dealer’s name, address, and phone number.

“If we can save just one life or take one dealer off the streets or make an impact on someone’s life to stop what’s going on, then we are going to do that,” Robert Gilliam said.

“Many other families are going to suffer if something’s not done,” Arletha Gilliam said.

The couple admitted their daughter had substance abuse issues, but believes the reward is their effort to pay it forward.

“This is our gift back to her, so the next family doesn’t have to go through this,” Robert Gilliam said.

The couple said this is not about revenge, but about legal justice.

“Families are tired of losing their kids. Families are tired of losing their mothers, fathers, uncles, cousins,” Arletha Gilliam said.

For now, they hold on to each other and memories of their daughter.

“She was my heart, my soul,” Robert Gilliam said.

They urge everyone to talk with their children and let them know they are loved, because there is no guarantee there will be a tomorrow.

“You don’t know that one day they are not going to be there. It doesn’t matter if they have drug addiction, what they’re into. They are still your child so take care of them,” Robert Gilliam said.

The couple says any information they gather will be forwarded to the Des Moines Police Department.