PORTSMOUTH, N.H. — A New Hampshire woman who is accused of causing the overdose death of a man from York, Maine, by selling him the powerful synthetic opiate fentanyl faces up to life in prison if convicted.

A Rockingham County grand jury indicted Amanda Burgess, 26, this month on a charge of furnishing fentanyl with death resulting – a crime that carries a potential life sentence.

Joseph Cahill, 27, was found by his older sister in her bathroom on June 15. He was already dead, though rescue workers did attempt CPR and three doses of Narcan in an effort to revive him.

Investigators learned of Burgess’ involvement when her mother arrived at the Portsmouth police station later that day, saying her daughter “was with the boy when he died.”

Donna Eiss showed police two text messages she had received from her daughter very early that day, when Eiss was asleep at her home in Connecticut.

The first, at 3 a.m., read: “I killed sum one” (sic) and the next, at 3:25 a.m.: “Plz pick up I need u idk wut Ta do I killed sum one plz help,” according to a police affidavit filed in court papers.

When they spoke at 4 a.m., Burgess told her mother that she “had been shooting up heroin with her friend” and that “he stopped breathing and turned blue.” She told her mother that she panicked and did not call 911. Burgess later texted, in part: “I just watch sum one die rite in front of me. …”

Burgess, who had accompanied Eiss to the police station and was waiting in the parking lot, told officers she had received a text from Cahill asking if she had any heroin. She met him behind a dumpster and sold him a $40 bag of heroin. She was with him when he injected the drug, she told police.

The New Hampshire medical examiner’s office determined that Cahill died of acute fentanyl poisoning.

There is no indication that Burgess knew the drug was fentanyl. The synthetic opiate, which can be 50 times as powerful as heroin, has become a major contributor to fatal overdoses in New Hampshire, Maine and other states.

New Hampshire Deputy Chief Medical Examiner Jennie Duval said that in the first six months of this year, the state had 105 fatal opiate overdoses. Of those, 27 were from heroin toxicity and 75 were from fentanyl. Some of the users had both substances in their systems.

“The fentanyl is just soaring,” Duval said.

In Maine, the number of overdose deaths involving fentanyl grew from nine in 2011 to 43 in 2014, according to statistics from the Office of Chief Medical Examiner. During that period, fatal heroin overdoses in Maine climbed from seven to 57. Through the first half of this year, 37 deaths were caused by heroin overdoses and 26 were caused by fentanyl.

New Hampshire Assistant Attorney General Jason Casey would not discuss specifics of the case against Burgess, but said his office is aggressively prosecuting crimes involving heroin and fentanyl.

“The heroin crisis in New Hampshire and other New England states is pretty well demonstrated,” Casey said.

Maine drug agents have said that they often seize what dealers and users believe is heroin, but is actually heroin laced with fentanyl, or fentanyl by itself.

Burgess is charged with furnishing drugs to Cahill, but a provision of the law allows for aggravated penalties when someone dies, including up to life in prison.

Burgess is from Connecticut and has ties to Maine. She was arrested in northern Maine shortly after the incident, according to court papers.