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Press Release

Cleveland man sentenced to 17 years in prison for selling heroin that caused three overdoses in Wooster

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Ohio

A Cleveland man was sentenced to 17 years in prison for selling heroin that caused three overdoses in Wooster last year, law enforcement officials said.


Demetrius L. Frizzell, 31, previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute heroin and one count of attempted witness tampering.


Wooster police learned about a heroin overdose victim who on Nov. 3 was brought to an emergency room unresponsive and appeared to be deceased. He was revived after emergency-room staff administered 12 doses of Narcan. Investigators traced the sale of heroin to Frizzell, according to court documents.


Frizzell also sold heroin on Oct. 29 and Nov. 2 that resulted in overdoses. All three people who overdosed were revived with Narcan, according to court documents.


Frizzell made a call from jail to an unknown male and instructed him to go to the home of one of the people who overdosed called and get him “in line,” according to court documents.


“This defendant sold heroin that resulted in several overdoses and would have caused deaths, but for the intervention from first responders and hospital personnel,” said U.S. Attorney Justin E. Herdman. “Aggressive enforcement, combined with increased prevention and education efforts, is our best chance to turn around this epidemic.”


DEA Special Agent in Charge Timothy Plancon stated: “Overdoses and overdose deaths related to heroin have become an epidemic across the country and Ohio has been hit particularly hard by this problem. Identifying and bringing to justice those individuals that distribute illegal drugs that result in an overdose is one of DEA’s top priorities.”


MEDWAY Director Donald Hall said: “The MEDWAY Drug Enforcement Agency will continue to collaborate and work closely with our federal partners to hold people accountable for their actions who are involved in trafficking drugs in our communities.”


This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the MEDWAY Drug Enforcement Agency, the Wooster Police Department and the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Teresa Riley and Mark Bennett.


Mike Tobin

Updated November 29, 2017

Drug Trafficking