Vt. man convicted in deadly overdose charged in 2nd drug death - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Vt. man convicted in deadly overdose charged in 2nd drug death

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It appears a deadly drug dealer has struck again. Police say he sold the heroin that caused the death of a Brattleboro woman. If that's true, it's not the first time he's given someone a fatal dose.

According to court papers, Lisa Johnson died just two weeks shy of her 48th birthday. She and her fiancé had a history of abusing prescription pills. Their dealer: 30-year-old Christopher Akey. But last week he gave the couple heroin rather than pills and they paid him with their own prescriptions. According to court papers, it was Johnson's first time using heroin and it killed her.

Thursday wasn't the first time Akey has entered a Vermont courtroom in shackles.

"The defendant, your honor, has been under some sort of conditions of release or parole, probations division since August 20th, 1999," Windham County Prosecutor Steven Brown said.

In fact, court records show that in 2002 he was arrested for manslaughter for an almost identical negligent act. Records show Akey, then 20, provided his 16-year-old girlfriend, Heather Allamby, with prescription pills to celebrate her birthday. She died that night of an overdose. Akey just finished serving out that sentence in April of this year.

"If he is convicted of any of these charges, his history will certainly influence the sentencing decided by the court and any recommendations the state makes," Brown said.

But, it appears a 10-year sentence didn't change Akey's ways. When he was arrested this time around, police say he had over 40 bags of heroin and an assortment of prescription pills on him. Still, his lawyer, speaking for him in court says Johnson's death wasn't his fault, pleading not guilty on all five counts.

Akey is being held on $50,000 bail.

Prosecutors say drugs are a growing problem in Brattleboro; mostly prescription pills. According to the court papers, Johnson and her fiancé both had a history of abusing prescription pills, and that pills are often used as currency in the drug trading game.

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