Three charged in September overdose death

By Joe Gorman


Three people are expected to be arraigned today in connection with the drug overdose of an 18-year-old Boardman woman last September.

The three, who were secretly indicted by a grand jury Thursday and arrested Friday are:

Ruben Best, 20, of Warren, on charges of involuntary manslaughter, tampering with evidence, trafficking in drugs and trafficking in drugs containing cocaine.

Gary Hartman, 24, no address available, involuntary manslaughter, corrupting another with drugs and two counts of trafficking in drugs.

Marijo Mazon, 46, of Boardman, trafficking in drugs and corrupting another with drugs.

All three are in the Mahoning County jail. They are expected to be arraigned in common pleas court today.

Assistant Prosecutor Martin Desmond said the three are accused of participating in the death of 18-year-old Erin Trell, who died of an overdose of several drugs, including marijuana mixed with Xanax and cocaine, on the South Side of Youngstown. She died Sept. 30, 2013.

Desmond said Hartman and Best are accused of being the suppliers of the drugs that Trell took, and Mazon then gave the drugs to Trell and a juvenile who was with them.

Desmond said the indictments took a while to hand down because the investigation was complicated. He credited Mahoning County Sheriff’s officer Bob Smith and Boardman detectives Mike Dado and Mike Hughes with their work.

Last year, two people were sentenced for their roles in providing drugs used in overdose deaths in Mahoning County and one person was sentenced in Trumbull County.

In Trumbull County, James Patterson, of Division Street in Youngstown, was given a 20-year sentence for supplying the heroin that led to the death of a Girard teen on her 17th birthday in April 2012.

In Mahoning County, Jamal Vaughn, 28, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for the death of a 22-year-old woman in February 2012 from a heroin overdose, although some of his sentence was for other crimes.

Also in Mahoning County, James Fortunato, 26, was sentenced to five years’ probation for a charge of reckless homicide for helping to supply the heroin that led to the death of a 21-year-old man inside the home of the man’s parents in November 2009.

In December, Mazon received a 180-day jail sentence with 130 days suspended in county court in Boardman for drug charges that were filed against her in October. She had more drug charges filed against her in December, when charged with two counts of trafficking in drugs. She pleaded guilty to reduced charges in those cases and was given a suspended sentence, probation and was ordered to perform community service.

Court records show only a traffic charge for Best from county court in Austintown and Hartman also has just one charge, a speeding ticket from 2008 in county court in Canfield.

Don't Miss a Story

Sign up for our newsletter to receive daily news directly in your inbox.