Indictment unsealed in October overdose death


By Joe Gorman

jgorman@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

An indictment filed in January charging a Lakewood Avenue man with supplying the drugs in an overdose death was unsealed Tuesday in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court.

Kewann Skinner, 23, faces charges of involuntary manslaughter, trafficking in heroin and corrupting another with drugs in the Oct. 19, 2017, death of Vito Weeks, 24, of Austintown.

Skinner was indicted secretly Jan. 11 but was not arrested until Friday, records at the county jail show. The indictment was then unsealed.

Weeks was found in the bedroom of his Claridge Drive home unconscious just after 4 p.m. Oct. 19, a coroner’s report said. Paramedics tried to revive him with the opiate antidote Nalaxone but failed. Similar efforts at St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital also failed.

The coroner’s report said family members told investigators Weeks had struggled with heroin use for two years before his death.

Weeks’ death was ruled accidental from multiple drug toxicity. Toxicology reports found heroin, fentanyl and other substances in his system.

Common pleas court records show Skinner was sentenced to eight months in prison in October 2015 after violating his probation on a charge of possession of cocaine. In that same case, Skinner had charges of improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle and being a felon in possession of a firearm dismissed.

In 2016, he was charged in municipal court with possession of heroin after a state trooper who gave Skinner a citation for driving under suspension found a bag of heroin in his cruiser and saw Skinner leave the bag there after looking at dash cam video.

However, that charge was amended in municipal court to possession of dangerous drugs, a first-degree misdemeanor. Skinner pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six months in the county jail, court records showed.

An arraignment date was not listed in court records for Skinner. He remains in the county jail.

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