YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — A North Bloomfield man facing federal drug charges that include a sentencing enhancement that drugs he delivered caused someone’s death entered guilty pleas Thursday.
Shawn Ray Smith, 35, entered guilty pleas in the U.S. Northern District Court of Ohio before U.S. Judge James S. Gwin to an eight-count superseding indictment charging him with gun and drug crimes.
Among the drug crimes is a sentencing enhancement that the government is seeking because he delivered drugs that caused the Feb. 6, 2016, death of a woman known only as “JK,” in court papers.
He also pleaded guilty to a charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm for having three guns the day the woman in the case died despite convictions in Ashtabula County Common Pleas Court for burglary, which prohibit him from having or being around a gun.
Sentencing is set for June 20.
The case was first indicted in June of 2017 and a superseding indictment was issued in January 2020. The case was supposed to resolve with a plea bargain before the government took the plea offer back, then was set for a March 2020 trial that never happened.
A trial brief filed by the government in anticipation of the March 2020 trial that was postponed said a woman, known as “J.K.,” was found not breathing by her children on her bedroom floor at about 5:20 a.m. Feb. 5, 2016. An autopsy later found that the woman, who was once in a relationship with Smith, died from an overdose of a combination of drugs, including cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine and fentanyl.
Smith kept the woman’s car, which was found at his home on Penniman Road the morning of her death. That led to a search of his apartment, the trial brief said.
Smith’s attorneys had filed a suppression motion in the case but Judge Gwin in July denied their motion.