JEFFERSON – A Geneva woman plead guilty to corrupting another with drugs Feb. 15 during a status conference before Ashtabula County Common Pleas Judge Marianne Sezon – in exchange, aggravated drug trafficking and involuntary manslaughter charges against her stemming from the Jan. 12, 2016, death of a Geneva man were dropped.
Shawnna Spurlock, 24, of 128 South Eagle St. in Geneva, plead guilty as part of an agreement with the Ashtabula County Prosecutor's Office to corrupting another with drugs, a second-degree felony. In exchange, charges of aggravated drug trafficking and involuntary manslaughter were dropped, according to a press release from Ashtabula County Prosecutor Nicholas Iarocci.
Spurlock was originally charged with involuntary manslaughter, corrupting another with drugs, aggravated drug trafficking and trafficking in heroin in the death of Eric Andrus, who died during the early morning hours of Jan. 12, 2016, at his Geneva-on-the-Lake home after allegedly being given a lethal dose of Fentanyl and morphine, according to a toxicology report from the Ashtabula County Coroner's Office.
Heroin is processed in the liver into morphine and Fentanyl is often used by heroin dealers to “cut” heroin with a cheaper, and far more potent, opiate drug.
As part of the plea agreement, Spurlock was sentenced by Judge Sezon to serve four years in prison, Iarocci said in his statement.
Another part of the agreement will be Spurlock's cooperation in the indictment and prosecution of the original co-defendant in the case, Marisa Leffel, 24, who is currently incarcerated on unrelated charges and whose charges in Andrus' death were dropped.
“The case against Leffel, which was previously dismissed, will be presented to the grand jury for re-indictment now that Spurlock stands convicted and has agreed to cooperate with and assist the State of Ohio in Leffel's prosecution,” Iarocci said.
Iarocci said the deal, part of an “aggressive” and “uncompromising” approach to prosecuting those responsible for overdose deaths, was due largely to the investigative efforts of the Geneva-on-the-Lake Village Police Department.
“Substantial evidence was gathered by the Geneva-on-the-Lake Police Department the supports the charges against Spurlock and Leffel,” Iarocci said. “These types of cases are very difficult to investigate, but the GOTL Police Department did an excellent and impressive job of uncovering and collecting evidence in this case.”
The proposed plea deal and sentence received Andrus' family's consent, according to Iarocci's press release.