Woman pleads guilty in fatal heroin overdose case
A woman already serving a prison sentence in one heroin overdose death has pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to a charge stemming from her role in supplying heroin to a second person who died from an overdose.
Court documents say Danielle Nicole Orndorff, 27, formerly of Winchester, could be sentenced to 15 years in prison under terms of the guilty plea entered Wednesday.
Court documents say Orndorff gave heroin to someone identified only as J.W.S. on Jan. 25, 2014. The victim, identified by the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force as Jerry Wayne Sides Jr., overdosed at a residence in the 100 block of Dakota Trail and was found unconscious in his home later in the day. He was pronounced dead at Winchester Medical Center.
Orndorff is already serving a four-year sentence for her role in an earlier heroin overdose death, a case that was prosecuted in Frederick County Circuit Court. The victim in the earlier case, Brian Bayliss, 34, was pronounced dead at Winchester Medical Center on June 10, 2013 after he was found unconscious in a recording studio he owned in Winchester.
Orndorff is also serving a one-year sentence on another drug-related offense. The 15-year federal sentence would be served concurrently with the Circuit Court sentences under terms of the plea agreement. Judge Michael F. Urbanski scheduled a sentencing hearing for 3:30 p.m. July 1.
Orndorff was out on bail and awaiting trial in the Bayliss case when she was arrested for her role in the Sides’ overdose.
Another defendant was also convicted Wednesday in U.S. District Court for his role in two non-fatal heroin overdoses in Winchester, both involving the same victim within a few days of each other in March 2014.
Court documents say the victim, identified only as J.H.H. in federal court documents, overdosed on heroin he accepted from Colin Patrick Butler after David Joseuh Medina provided Butler with the heroin.
Medina’s guilty plea was part of an agreement in which the prosecution will seek a sentence of 14 years imprisonment.
Butler and another person called 911. Emergency medical personnel revived the stricken victim with doses of Narcan, a drug that counters the effects of heroin overdoses. The victim was taken to Winchester Medical Center, but had to be transported a few days later when he overdosed on heroin again, court documents say.
Authorities say Butler was again the provider of the heroin, which he obtained at Medina’s residence from a person identified in court documents as E.K.P.
A statement of facts signed by Medina reported: “Mr. Butler had purchased the heroin earlier in the day from E.K.P. in a transaction that Mr. Medina had facilitated for both Mr. Butler and E.K.P. at Mr. Medina’s residence … .”
Virginia State Police Special Agent Jay Perry, coordinator of the Northwest Virginia Regional Drug Task Force, said heroin addicts desperate for a fix are willing to keep taking risks even after surviving near-fatal overdoses in quick succession.
“You’re dealing with the disease of addiction, and these folks are addicted to heroin, and they get extremely ill when they don’t take it,” Perry said. “They’re not in treatment, and it’s just a vicious cycle that they’re part of unfortunately.”
Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or firstname.lastname@example.org
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