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Cops and Courts

Man sentenced to prison for selling fatal dose of heroin


A Cleveland man was sentenced Monday in Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court to four years in prison after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter for selling a dose of heroin that killed a Grafton man last year.

Michael Karkoska, 24, was the last of those facing charges in connection with the drug deal that led to the death of 19-year-old Lanny David Gullion III, who was found dead on Cleveland’s west side on Oct. 10.

In addition to involuntary manslaughter, Karkoska pleaded guilty to charges of corrupting another with drugs, trafficking in drugs, drug possession and possession of criminal tools.

A second Lorain County man, Kei Niedra of North Ridgeville, earlier pleaded guilty to reckless homicide and other charges in the case, and received a nine-month prison sentence.

Cuyahoga County prosecutors have said Niedra drove Karkoska to a convenient store parking lot, where the drug deal took place inside Niedra’s car.

Karkoska had been scheduled to go on trial Monday, but the plea deal was reached before jury selection began.

Prosecutors praised the plea and sentence in the case.

“For the first time in memory, a drug dealer in Cuyahoga County has been held responsible for the death of his customer — and it will not be the last,” Assistant County Prosecutor Mahmoud Awadallah said in a news release. “Today, Michael Karkoska learned that you are responsible for your actions.”

Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or

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