LIMA — In a largely unexpected move, a man who police say gave heroin to a Lima man who subsequently died of a drug overdose pleaded guilty to reduced charges Wednesday afternoon.
Kurt Vanmeter, 24, whose address is listed in court documents as the Allen County Jail, was indicted by an Allen County grand jury on a charge of involuntary manslaughter, a first-degree felony; corrupting another with drugs, a felony of the second degree; and trafficking in heroin, a fifth-degree felony.
During his appearance in Allen County Common Pleas Court on Wednesday, Vanmeter entered a plea of guilty in exchange for the state’s agreement to drop the remaining charges. Sentencing was scheduled for 8:30 a.m. March 8.
According to court records, Vanmeter, on Nov. 24 of last year, provided a white, powdery substance to Lima resident Frank Coleman at a residence at 960 St. Johns Ave. The police narrative by Lima Police Department Detective Steve Stechschulte said police responded at approximately 5 p.m. and found Coleman unconscious and without a pulse. He was transported to Lima Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Stechschulte interviewed two females who were at the residence during or just prior to to time Coleman snorted the white powder. One of the women described the man who had provided the white powder. Through a search of cell phone histories and vehicle checks, police identified Vanmeter as a likely suspect. He was located and, according to court documents, confessed to starting to sell drugs in the area.
According to Stechschulte’s written report, Vanmeter confirmed that he gave the white powder, believed to be heroin, to Coleman prior to the Lima man’s death.
Reach J Swygart at 567-242-0464.