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Cops and Courts

Drug dealer involved in fatal overdose gets nine-year prison sentence

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    Devan Wilkerson Jr., left, appears in Lorain County Common Pleas Court with his attorney, Doug Merrill, on Monday.

    BRAD DICKEN / CHRONICLE

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ELYRIA — The Elyria man who sold the fatal dose of heroin that killed Brian Baldwin earlier this year has agreed to serve nine years in prison.

Devan Wilkerson Jr., 23, pleaded guilty Monday to charges of involuntary manslaughter, corrupting another with drugs and trafficking in drugs in connection with Baldwin’s death. He also pleaded guilty in two other drug trafficking cases he had been facing when Baldwin overdosed at an Elyria restaurant in January.

Elyria police have said that they traced the lethal drugs back to Wilkerson using evidence found at Baldwin’s residence.

After Wilkerson entered his guilty pleas, his attorney, Doug Merrill, asked if his client could be released until the sentencing hearing scheduled for Friday, a request opposed by Assistant Lorain County Prosecutor Donna Freeman.

She said Wilkerson has routinely picked up new criminal cases while free on bond and feared that he would do the same thing if he were released for even a few days.

County Common Pleas Judge James Miraldi said that while he appreciated Wilkerson’s cooperative demeanor in court, he couldn’t lower the bond based on Wilkerson’s past.

Both Freeman and Miraldi noted that it was possible that Wilkerson could get an early release from prison if he behaved while incarcerated.

Contact Brad Dicken at 329-7147 or bdicken@chroniclet.com. Follow him on Twitter @BradDickenCT.



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