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Brighton men jailed after woman dies from drug overdose

Photo credit: Sussex Police

Two men have been jailed after a woman with whom they were sharing drugs died from an overdose in Brighton.

37-year-old Zoe Mitchell died of a drugs overdose on Saturday, October 31, 2020, after sharing Class A drugs with two men.

John Slattery, 42, of no fixed address, was jailed for 30 months at Lewes Crown Court on Tuesday (September 21) for manslaughter and administering a noxious substance to commit grievous bodily harm.

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John Slattery

Keenan James, 35, of Lower Rock Gardens in Brighton, received a 20-month prison sentence for possession with the intent to supply heroin and crack cocaine.

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Keenan James

The court heard Zoe had met James and Slattery on the afternoon of October 31 and went to a car park in Trafalgar Lane, Brighton, at around 5pm to take drugs they had recently purchased.

CCTV footage showed Slattery inject Zoe with a substance from a syringe, before both he and James injected into their own arms.

Zoe lost consciousness around ten minutes later.

The pair called an ambulance and following resuscitation attempts by Slattery, James and paramedics, Zoe was taken to Royal Sussex County Hospital. She sadly passed away on November 7.

James and Slattery were arrested shortly after and, after pleading guilty to all charges against them, were jailed.

Detective Inspector Dee Wells said: “Zoe Mitchell’s tragic death emphasises the devastating impacts of drug addiction and the huge risks taken by drug users. 

“There should be no doubt that illegal drugs are deadly substances that can and do destroy lives. Our thoughts are with Zoe’s family and friends following this awful tragedy.”

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