Guilty pleas in drug overdose, promoting prostitution

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

A St. Paul man pleaded guilty to supplying the heroin to an Orono man who later died of an overdose, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Wednesday.

In court on Tuesday, Garyegus Lealexandar Cooper, 39, pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree sale of a controlled substance. The charge arose from the investigation into the death of David Andrew Mack-Bohnhoff, 33. As part of the agreement, Cooper also will plead guilty to promotion of prostitution, a crime for which he was recently charged.

According to the criminal complaint, the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Department was called to the scene of a death at an Orono home on June 25, 2016. The deputies found the victim fully clothed, lying on the floor of his bedroom.

The complaint states that there was no sign of trauma, but there was drug paraphernalia near his body, including a lighter and a spoon that appeared to contain narcotics. There were also needles and a plastic bag with drugs in it.  The victim had a puncture wound on his right arm, consistent with having recently injected drugs.

Deputies learned that the victim had been found by a family member. He was last seen alive on June 24. The next day, when no one had heard from him, a family member entered the home and found the victim. Investigators searched his cell phone and discovered text messages on June 24 that he had been attempting to purchase heroin from Cooper.

An autopsy revealed that the cause of death was an overdose of heroin, fentanyl and alcohol toxicity. Forensic testing on the contents of the baggie confirmed it was a combination of the two drugs.

Cooper will be sentenced on Dec. 21 and is expected to receive a sentence of 100 months in prison for the drug sale conviction and 100 months for the prostitution conviction. The two will be served concurrently.

Criminal complaint (PDF)