The Drug Report

Facts about what can go wrong when people use drugs

  • The Best Drug Info Ever?

    A big part of my inspiration for The Drug Report was Beth Pearce's amazing film, VOICE OF THE VICTIMS: TRUE STORIES OF ECSTASY AND KETAMINE. The film simply lets the victims of drug tragedies tell their stories. It's real life, it's undeniable, and it's incredibly powerful. I'm sure Beth has saved many, many lives, and it is my hope that this blog will do so as well. To learn more about her film, go to Voice Of The Victims.


    A friend of mine likes to say, "You're entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts."

    When it comes to drugs, there are lots of opinions out there: Some think drugs are safe and fun, some think they're dangerous and frightening, and many think everything in between.

    But facts are facts, and when someone dies from drugs, or someone is murdered by a person who is on drugs, or is raped by someone who has given them drugs, that's just a fact. Drug users who actively promote drug use rail against these facts, and I expect they'll be commenting regularly on The Drug Report. But they can't change the facts.

Archive for the ‘Marijuana’ Category

Stoned Man Forgets Murders

Posted by Childress on September 12, 2006

Dustin Paul admits to smoking a lot of pot and snorting a bunch of cocaine at a couple parties one night.  It’s the next day he has more trouble remembering.  Here’s the story, from the Canadian Press:

PENTICTON, B.C. — Dustin Paul shot five people and then slit his own throat after hearing a voice inside his head at a creek-side party, he told a B.C. Supreme Court jury Tuesday.

Paul, 26, was testifying in his own defence at his trial on three counts of second-degree murder and two of attempted murder in connection with the Oct. 30, 2004 shooting deaths of Damien Endreny, Robin Baptiste and Quincy Paul. Tommy Lee Gabriel and Billy Louie were wounded in the attack.

Paul told the court he could only recall shooting Louie.

When asked by co-defence counsel Chris Johnson if he shot the others, he replied: ”I must have.”

Paul’s voice was low during much of the testimony. At times, he seemed contemplative but showed little emotion until asked how he now felt about shooting the five men.

”I feel terrible,” he replied, breaking into tears.

Phew. What can you say?


Posted in Cocaine, Marijuana | Leave a Comment »

Pot + Crack + Car = Death + Jail

Posted by Childress on September 12, 2006

Jeremia D. Spotts will spend the next 2 1/2 to 6 1/2 years in prison for a moment of bad judgment. And he’ll spend the rest of his life thinking about the husband and father he killed in a drug-induced car crash.  From the Lancaster (PA) Intelligencer Journal:

Melissa Wagner stood beside her daughter Thursday and sobbed as she admonished the man who killed her boyfriend, Thomas J. Mahan, in a car crash last year.

“The song I wanted to play at our wedding was played at his funeral,” she told Jeremiah D. Spotts. “Tom was my best friend. I go to bed alone looking at his picture and holding his shirt. He was my rock, and now he’s gone.”

Following the testimony of Wagner and other family members, Lancaster County Judge Michael J. Perezous sentenced Spotts, 28, of Peach Bottom, to 2½ to 6½ years in state prison.

Spotts pleaded guilty to felony homicide by vehicle, driving under the influence, possession of a small amount of marijuana and two traffic offenses. He also must pay $8,251 for Mahan’s funeral expenses and complete drug and alcohol counseling.

According to police, Spotts smoked crack cocaine and marijuana and was speeding when the 1985 Pontiac Trans Am he was driving on Route 272 in Pequea Township crashed into a tree shortly after 8:30 p.m.

Mahan, Spotts’ friend for 15 years, was ejected from the car and died from his injuries.

The article points out that Spotts hit a number of curbs and cars before the crash — plenty of warning for a rational person to realize he should be anywhere but behind the wheel. But drugs can be the enemy of rationality.

Posted in Charges & Trials, Cocaine, Marijuana | Leave a Comment »

Survey Finds Parents Clueless on Kids’ Drugs

Posted by Childress on August 19, 2006

A recent survey by – finds that parents’ perception of parties their teens go to vary a great deal from what the teens reports goes on at their get-togethers. From the Chicago (IL) Tribune:

[A] survey released Thursday by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University… [finds]: One-third of teens and nearly half of 17-year-olds attend house parties where alcohol, marijuana and illegal drugs are plentiful–even when parents are actually in the home. The survey also found:

– Eighty percent of parents believe that neither alcohol nor marijuana is usually available at teen gatherings, but 50 percent of their kids say they attend parties where alcohol, drugs or both are available.

– Ninety-eight percent of parents say they are normally present during parties in their homes, while a third of teens report that parents are rarely around.

– Only 12 percent of parents see illegal substances as their teen’s greatest concern. But twice as many teens (27 percent) say drugs are a major worry.

– Thirty-eight percent of teens say they can buy marijuana within a day; 19 percent can complete the transaction in an hour or less.

Commenting on the survey, Joseph A. Califano, secretary of health, education and welfare during the Carter administration, said:

Where are [the parents]? Why aren’t they walking in and out of the party? Don’t they smell the pot or the booze? There’s just a tremendous disconnect.”

“Parents are living in a fool’s paradise. They’ve got to take the blinders off and pay attention. If asbestos were in the ceiling, they’d raise hell. But their schools are riddled with drugs. If they’d say, `Get the drugs out’ with the same energy, we’d get somewhere. This is a wake-up call.”

Parents need to pay attention and not expect schools to handle this for them. THEY need to talk to their kids about drugs. The best tool I know of to accomplish this is the Voice of the Victims films. The parent edition gives parents the information they need to know, and the motivation and will to talk to their kids.

The teen/young adult edition tells the stories of four drug tragedies in the reality-TV format kids appreciate: No narrators, no endless statistics, no phony scare tactics: Just the friends and families of the victims, telling their stories through tears.

Here’s a direct link to the order page. My friend Beth Pearce, the producer, has it on sale now (both films, more than two hours of good stuff, for $25 and she’ll pay the U.S. shipping — this is a mission for her, not a business), so do buy the set and MORE IMPORTANT, do talk to your kids.

Posted in Alcohol, Cocaine, Ecstasy, Marijuana, Prescription drugs | Leave a Comment »

Pieper, Veluz Case Suffers Setback

Posted by Childress on August 19, 2006

The man wanted for questioning in the deaths of Derek Pieper and Raymond Veluz, whose deaths I’ve written about several times (here, here, here), has been found shot to death in Florida.

The violent death of Jeremy Henry may make it impossible to ever learn what led Pieper and Veluz so far from their homes at 5 a.m. the morning they were killed. Initial reports hinted that Pieper’s use of drugs might have been involved, but many friends and family members have written me saying it wsa just a case of “being in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

The comments I’ve received about Raymond have been particularly glowing, so no matter what it was that got these two in the wrong part of town at the crack of dawn, it’s a shame.

Here’s the update, from The St. Petersburg Times:

Jeremy Henry was a mystery in life: a man who could be vicious to enemies yet also bought ice cream for neighborhood children, according to friends.

And the 20-year-old, who was gunned down early Sunday on a Dade City dirt road, left a mystery in his death: What happened to him? And what might Henry – wanted for questioning in the July 28 shooting deaths of two Wesley Chapel teens – have been able to tell authorities?

The county Sheriff’s Office had little to say on the case Monday, aside from listing the items in Henry’s pockets when he died:

The key to a mobile home near where his body was found. Marijuana. Methamphetamine. And a .40-caliber semiautomatic handgun. …

Friends confirmed Henry stayed in the Dade City area, despite rumors he had fled the state.

But he was paranoid and not sleeping well.

“He was planning to turn himself in,” said his cousin, 24-year-old Bryan Wright. He said Henry was saving money, in anticipation of having to pay a jail bond, and a lawyer.

Henry has an extensive criminal history, dating to age 11. He was arrested most recently in March, charged with aggravated battery in a shooting that injured a Dade City man. The charges were dropped.

The Sheriff’s Office says he was the leader of a gang called Jeremy Henry’s Posse. Family members adamantly deny that.

“I know for a fact that this kid was no head of no gang, he was no part of no gang. He hung by himself,” said Catherine Wright, the aunt who raised him.

The Sheriff’s Office said Henry’s death is a setback in the investigation of who killed Derek Pieper, 17, and Raymond Veluz, 18, the Wesley Chapel teens found slain last month on a remote road in Trilby. Henry was never called a suspect but was wanted for questioning.

Pieper’s brother, Bryan, was unaffected by the news of Henry’s death: “I really don’t care. Sorry.”

Meth, marijuana, a gun, a cloud of suspicion and an early death. Jeremy Henry’s life may not have been a glamorous drug life, but it was a drug life.

Posted in Charges & Trials, Marijuana, Meth | Leave a Comment »

Methadone Death in Ireland

Posted by Childress on August 17, 2006

Neil Wilson Laffin, 23, like many who use drugs, had added methadone to his drug repertoire of ecstasy and marijuana, even though he was not a heroin addict.  The results:

On the evening of Saturday, December 18, Mr Laffin was found dead by a friend.

Deborah Taylor said she had gone to see if Mr Laffin wanted some food as he had been in bed all day with a sore mouth.

She said when she found him: “He was lying face down. His lips were black and he wasn’t breathing.”

An ambulance was called and despite attempts to revive him, Mr Laffin was pronounced dead at 7.59pm.

Professor Jack Crane, state pathologist, concluded: “Death was caused by poisoning of methadone.”

Professor Crane said there had been a “relatively high concentration” of the drug in the young man’s system.

“There can be no doubt that this was the cause of death in this case,” he said.

One question remains, according to the Irish Times:  Police are investigating whether Laffin’s housemate, who had a prescription for methadone “forced” (the Times’ word) Laffin to take the drug.

Posted in Ecstasy, Marijuana, Methadone | Leave a Comment »

So Whacked Out, He Killed Her

Posted by Childress on August 13, 2006

Cliffton J. Brownlee, 25, who prosecutors called “a walking time bomb” because of his drug use, was sentenced last week to 25 years in prison followed by 20 years of extended supervision for the brutal stabbing murder of his wife in 2005.

At his sentencing, Brownlee told the court, “”The incident wouldn’t have taken place if I had not done drugs … it isn’t easy to stop (using drugs) when you’ve started.”

The incident was one of the most bruttal investigators in Woodman Iowa had ever seen, according to the Dubuqu IA Telegraph Herald, but for some reason, Judge George Curry cut Brownlee some slack:

Despite calling the killing “a very vicious, homicidal attack” and saying the “brutality of the act is indescribable,” Curry ignored prosecution and pre-sentencing recommendations for a stiffer sentence. Pre-sentencing recommended 40 years in prison plus 20 years of extended supervision; Grant County District Attorney Lisa Riniker sought 30 years confinement and 20 years of extended supervision.

Why did Brownlee stab his wife 20 times?

“There was no reason to stab somebody 20 times,” Curry said, noting Brownlee was high on drugs at the time of the killing. “You had an opportunity to stop. All you had to do was call 911. Instead you finished her off.”

According to testimony, both Brownlee and [his wife] Brownlee-Reynolds were frequent drug users. Blood and urine samples taken from Brownlee the day of the crime included amounts of THC, amphetamine and methamphetamine.

Brownlee-Reynolds had amounts of ecstasy, THC, and OxyContin – a pain reliever – in her system at the time of her death.

“They got themselves so whacked out, they couldn’t comprehend what they were up to,” Day said, adding the OxyContin made Brownlee-Reynolds “impervious to pain.”

I’m speechless.  What a sad, sad story.

Posted in Charges & Trials, Ecstasy, Marijuana, Meth, Prescription drugs | Leave a Comment »

A Nice Tribute to Derek and Raymond

Posted by Childress on August 8, 2006

Derek Pieper’s and Raymond Veluz’ deaths have generated a lot of traffic on The Drug Report — an indication that they were very well liked young men.  The early reports focused on Pieper’s drug use, as the media are wont to do in the name of sensationalism. 

Recently some much more positive coverage has emerged on Tampa Bay’s Channel 10

Wesley Chapel, Florida – 18-year-old Raymond Veluz wrote poetry and enjoyed listening to techno music. While 17-year-old Derek Pieper was an honor student as well as a lacrosse player.

Many of his teammates got together with Coach Tom Fitzsimons on Monday night, “We want to make sure the parents know, the kids know that we’re all there to help them, the team is there to help them.”

Tom says the boys want to honor Derek by putting a special patch on their jerseys, ”Derek was one of those people who would light up a room he was a quick friend to everybody.” He was also a good friend to Raymond. Dakota Summerton says she knew both of them well, “Derek was the type of guy that hung out with everyone, Raymond was the type of guy that didn’t hang out with everyone, but they just happened to be friends and get together.”

She went to homecoming with Derek. And loved listening to Raymond’s jokes, “He was pretty funny got me laughing a few times definitely.” She wonder’s why they were murdered, “Something bad happened to two really good people.” Dakota says friends have been posting messages to Derek’s MySpace account and supporting each other, “All of Wesley Chapel is feeling bad we’re all getting together just helping each other out.”

Even Coach Fitzsimons is looking for answers, “There’s probably a thousand rumors out there, everybody’s got their ideas but nobody knows what the truth is.” Fitzsimons says counseling is available to anyone who needs it. He says parents should look for signs in their children such as moodiness and change of routine. Events like this one can trigger other events.

Posted in Ecstasy, Marijuana, Prescription drugs | Leave a Comment »

Gangs Suspected in Pieper/Veluz Murders

Posted by Childress on August 5, 2006

Police now suspect that a local gangster, Jeremy Hanson Henry, may be responsible for the deaths of Raymond Veluz and Derek Pieper, which I posted on a couple days ago.  Here’s a report from the Tampa (FL) Tribune:

Long before Jeremy Hanson Henry became the suspect in the brutal shooting deaths of two teenagers in Trilby, he was a wanted man.

Dade City police have been looking for the 21-year-old reputed gang leader since early May, when he reportedly crashed through bushes outside a KFC in a rented car and led police on a high-speed chase for several blocks before he disappeared.

At the time, Henry was suspected of planning to rob the restaurant at gunpoint.

He’s been on the run ever since.

On Wednesday, the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office identified Henry as a “person of interest” in the slayings of Raymond Veluz, 18, and Derek Pieper, 17, whose bodies were found early July 28 on a secluded country road in Trilby. Sheriff’s office spokesman Doug Tobin said Henry is a suspect in the slayings.

That morning, neighbors in the rural community northwest of Dade City told investigators they heard what sounded like firecrackers going off about 5 a.m. The bodies were discovered a short time later, side by side in the road.

Perhaps, as some commenters have said, these unfortunate kids were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.  It still hasn’t been reported why they went there at 5 a.m.  I’ll follow the story and provide updates.

Posted in Charges & Trials, Cocaine, Ecstasy, Marijuana | 6 Comments »

Were Drugs a Factor in These Deaths?

Posted by Childress on August 2, 2006

[Note:  Many friends of Derek and Raymond have questioned this post and its earlier title, which I since have changed.  The original title, “Drug life leads to deaths,” came from this article’s references to Derek’s drug use and does not refer to Raymond; hence, the singular “Life” in the earlier title.  Subsequent investigations show that drug use may have had nothing to do with Derek and Raymond’s deaths; see update and second update.]

Sometimes it’s not the drugs that kill you.  It’s the people that a drug-oriented life cause you to hang out with.  That may have been the case here — although the story is still developing as the updates above make clear.  The St. Petersburg (FL) Sun Times reports:

Derek Pieper told his friends he was going to stop.

In the past few months, the 17-year-old Wesley Chapel boy had dabbled in marijuana, Ecstasy and Xanax, said Dakota Summerton, who dated Pieper last year and remained a close friend. He recently promised to stop using the drugs, Summerton said.

But friends suspect he didn’t. After Pieper and another teen were shot to death in Trilby early Friday morning, those friends wished they could have stopped Pieper themselves.

“He started hanging out with the wrong group of people,” said Summerton, 17, who attended Wesley Chapel High School with Pieper. “He started hanging out with druggies.”

Sheriff’s spokesman Kevin Doll would not comment on the investigation of the crime that left two teens dead on a country road, but other comments on the popular social networking Web site MySpace suggest that Pieper’s life had changed direction.

“He made some bad choices the past 6 months, and I was hoping he would grow out of it, I thought he was smarter,” wrote one teen who said he was Pieper’s neighbor.

While Pieper had tried “typical teen drugs” within the past year, it was “nothing hard like crystal meth or anything like that,” Summerton said.

“I just wish I could have turned him away from his bad ways sooner. And I couldnt,” wrote another neighbor.

Summerton said she was also close friends with Raymond Veluz, 18, who was also killed Friday at Trilby.

She said Veluz also attended Wesley Chapel High School, and had fewer friends than Pieper, but was very close to them.

“He was into writing a lot,” Summerton said. “That and techno music.”

Summerton said friends are trying to piece together what happened, and rumors are circulating about how the two died.

No matter what further investigations reveal about this terrible crime, one thing is clear:  The perception that ecstasy and presecription drugs are just “typical teen drugs” and nothing to worry about is false.  Kids need to understand the concepts of things going wrong, of addictions happening, and of people who deal drugs not being trustworthy. 

Posted in Ecstasy, Marijuana, Prescription drugs | 12 Comments »

Erica Hicks’ Killer Found Guilty

Posted by Childress on August 2, 2006

The trial of a 16-year-old boy for killing Erica Hicks by providing her a lethal stream of drugs has ended with a guilty verdict.  The Myrtle Beach (SC) News Post reports:

The 15-year-old boy, whose name was not released because of his age, was found guilty Monday in Wake County District Court of involuntary manslaughter in the death of 16-year-old Erica Hicks of Garner. Hicks died in Oct. 3, two days after ingesting a mix of methamphetamine, cocaine and ecstasy at a birthday party, according to an autopsy.

Judge Craig Croom also found the boy guilty of possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell and deliver. Defense attorneys planned to appeal the ruling. Sentencing was scheduled for Friday.

During the hearing, the judge reserved his harshest words for the parents of the boy and Hicks.

“This case is about parental responsibility,” Croom said. “As I listened to the evidence, I realized these kids were basically doing what they wanted to do.”

I am not familiar with this case, so I will not judge the parents’ behavior. However, many parents depend on schools to teach their kids about drugs, and that’s foolish.  Parents need to take the lead responsibility for teaching their kids about the risks of drugs, and for keeping a watchful eye on them.

A story in the Raleigh (NC) News Observer is worth reading in its entirety because it gives more detail on the parents’ involvement in this case.  If the story is true, these were parents that turned their backs on obvious problems — and even did drugs with their kids in some cases.  Here’s an excerpt:

There’s the father of the defendant, who had to know his son was at least doing drugs, if not dealing. His son had been busted for possession at school; his room contained scales, drugs and paraphernalia.

This is the father whose girlfriend brought marijuana into their home. I’m sure the defendant never picked up on that. (Yeah, right.)

There are the parents of Erica’s best friend, a girl who shared drugs with Erica and others during her father’s 40th birthday party on the day of Erica’s death. The father is now apparently concerned that testimony at the trial might reflect poorly on his mortgage and insurance business.

Talk about watching out for one’s own heiney.

But of course, the person whose role in all of this is most perplexing is that of the woman who probably loved Erica best: her mother.

Kim Hicks admits that the day before Erica’s death, she and Erica, as well as the defendant, smoked pot together. According to Erica’s friends, her mother also handed out prescription Xanax and served alcohol.

Hicks denies that she ever shared her Xanax and says that she only smoked marijuana with her daughter that one time. She testified that she didn’t know about her daughter’s picture on — with a bong.

As a parent, I know how tough it is to raise kids.  But you have to do better than this!

Posted in Charges & Trials, Cocaine, Ecstasy, Marijuana, Meth | 1 Comment »

Drugs Linked To Houston Murders

Posted by Childress on July 22, 2006

Four years after Rachael Koloroutis and Tiffany Rowell, both 18; Marcus Precella, 19, and Adelbert Sanchez, 21, were bludgeoned and shot to death in the Houston suburb of Clear Lake, police have arrested one suspect and are hunting another.

And they have a motive, says the Houston Chronicle

Police had said the killings were likely drug-related and that Precella owed money for drugs he sold. Precella, who worked part-time as a waiter, began selling the drugs he and his friends used to other friends, police have said. The drugs were identified as Ecstasy, Xanax, cocaine and marijuana.

Sanchez, Precella’s cousin, also sold drugs, according to police.

Police have one suspect in custody and are looking for Chris Snider, who may be in Louisville or North Carolina.

Posted in Charges & Trials, Cocaine, Ecstasy, Marijuana | 2 Comments »

“Self Medicating” Leads to Two Deaths

Posted by Childress on July 19, 2006

Rollie Morgan was self-medicating, his father said.

“These pills, marijuana and beer will just take you down the tubes.  Those things made him into something I didn’t recognize.”

What sort of things?  Horrible things:

Only seconds before he died, Rollie Morgan ran into his house carrying the .22-caliber rifle his father, Richard, futilely tried to wrestle away hours earlier.

The 18-year-old told his father: “I just shot Tara. We need to take her to the hospital.”

Morgan reloaded the rifle and sprinted to the car where his on-again, off-again girlfriend, Tara Lowery-Stevens, 19, lay wounded, if not dead.

As his father watched, Morgan fired at least nine more shots into her head and upper body through the shattered passenger-side window.

He then sat behind the steering wheel and looked toward the body. “I love you, Tara,” he said.

Morgan placed the rifle between his feet, inserted the muzzle in his mouth, reached down and pulled the trigger.

Rollie was definitely a troubled kid.  But what he needed was help and professionally prescribed medications.  What he opted for was self-medication:  drugs and booze.

Bad choice. 

His dad has a wish:

“I hope other kids learn from mine.”

Posted in Alcohol, Charges & Trials, Marijuana, Prescription drugs | 7 Comments »

Marijuana Stars in Many Crimes

Posted by Childress on July 15, 2006

I don’t usually search for marijuana-related crimes, but today I did the Nexis search, “marijuana AND death OR murder” and what I found was shocking.

In just one week of English-language news coverage, this search generated 315 hits. Granted, many represent different stories on the same subject, and a few detail research studies, not actual crimes. 

But even so, the tale is shocking.  Here are just a few of the stories unearthed by this search:

Suspect in murders of five has long arrest record

Dyleski trial site won’t be moved (the trial of a 17 year old charged in the murder of the wife of a prominent attorney)

Authorities:  Georgia student shot in drug deal

Suspected in an act of evil; Man who police say blew smoke from drug in face of infant son to quiet him is charged in the child’s death

Variety of witnesses say Olsen fessed up (to murdering a teenage girl)

Teenager will get 30 years for killing (she was one of three teen charged in the murder of a 62 year old grandmother; all three were pot users)

Man admits to 2003 killing; victim found in burning car in Kenner (pot deal gone bad)

New York man charged in “shaken baby” death of son

Family man, addict, prisoner

Killer gets life; family of victim still hurts

Man charged in revenge killing

Gun didn’t fire right, driver says:  But it still fired, and killed teen

Police ID body found under bridge

Gunman in trooper’s death sentenced to life

Brother: Fatal chase out of character

Needing money, drug dealer turned against people he knew

Life sentence brings little comfort

Man arrested in fatal overdose

Jacksonville man’s murder trial begins

Car jumps curb; strikes and kills 9 year old cyclist

Fatal details emerge in mobile home fire

College athlete found dead in trunk of car

Pettis gets life in prison

Hattiesburg suspect in deaths still at large

Man charged with killing mom has long drug history

Terrell Hills slaying goes to trial

Former Henry basketball player gets life without parole for 2004 murder

Mouchett’s car, gun linked to murder

Feds indict man in 1997 Lincoln double homicide

Death row inmate moved; retrial set

Family faced threat by son

Last screams of Briton stabbed by rape gang

Former Rapids man found dead in jail

Former Fresno State basketball player sentenced to life in prison for murder

Brazen drug dealer jailed for four years

Dope link to violent deaths

RCMP search for suspect after 2 Saskatchewan Mounties shot in police pursuit

Fugitive’s arrest re-opens murder case for ex-sheriff

Multiple stabbing nets 15 years

Probation for student in traffic fatality

Muncie man pleas guilty to shooting

Woman will be tried in heroin user’s death

Supreme Court upholds conviction in death of Reno police officer

That’s one week’s worth stories.  One week.  In each one of them, marijuana played a role.

In some, early marijuana led the way to a life of drugs and crime.  In others, killers were high on marijuana.  In others, people killed for marijuana.

Often overlooked as a minor drug, marijuana has major consequences.

Posted in Charges & Trials, Marijuana | 6 Comments »

Pot Deal Leads to Murder

Posted by Childress on July 15, 2006

You’d think that by the time you reached the age of 72, you’d know better.  From the New Orleans Times Picayune:

A Mississippi man has pleaded guilty to killing an elderly man from Texas whose body was found three years ago in the trunk of a burning car in Kenner.

Orlanda Smith, 29, of Brookhaven, Miss., pleaded guilty to manslaughter and received a 15-year sentence for killing Raymond J. Johnson, 72, of Katy, Texas, on June 21, 2003.

Firefighters dousing a car fire found Johnson’s body in the trunk of a Cadillac at 1 Hamlet St. in an industrial area just north of Louis Armstrong International Airport. He had been shot in the head and chest, police said.

Authorities were uncertain where the killing occurred, but they later determined that Johnson would deliver marijuana to Smith in Mississippi and that Johnson had driven from Texas to Brookhaven to collect money when he was killed.

Posted in Charges & Trials, Marijuana | Leave a Comment »

Man Charged with Killing Son with PCP Smoke

Posted by Childress on July 15, 2006

Here’s a sad story of an infant who is dead because his dad, Julio Rivera, was allegedly so whacked out on drugs he didn’t realize PCP smoke isn’t good for babies.  And the mom, Cynthia Morales, was too whacked out to do anything about it.  From Newsday:

A Brentwood (NY) man with a long history of violence, drug addiction and Satanic worship was charged Friday with killing his 5-month-old son Eric, an infant he often subdued by blowing marijuana laced with PCP into his mouth, authorities said.

The infant was found motionless in the back seat of Rivera’s car on March 31. Rivera and Morales were living then with several relatives in Brentwood.

Rivera … was charged with second-degree murder, second-degree manslaughter and endangering the welfare of a child. …

“In his short life, Eric was repeatedly exposed to PCP-laced marijuana,” said [prosecutor Nancy] Clifford. “The child had repeated and acute brain injury consistent with shaken-baby syndrome.”

The marijuana and angel dust combination was blown into the child’s face “to silence the baby when he was fussing,” Clifford said.

Of course the defendants deny guilt. We’ll let the decidedly more sober and sane courts decide.

Posted in Charges & Trials, Marijuana, PCP | Leave a Comment »