Drug charges dropped against man accused of causing girlfriend’s overdose

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CLEARFIELD COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — A Clearfield County man accused of delivering drugs that resulted in the death of his girlfriend will no longer be charged with involvement in her death.

Patrick O’Brien, 37, was originally charged in March of 2020 after Donna Smith overdosed on heroin that was laced with morphine and fentanyl. He was called back to court in October of 2020.

According to Clearfield County District Attorney Ryan Sayers, the Commonwealth will not be moving forward with the charges against O’Brien for drug delivery resulting in death and possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance. Sayers said the Sandy Township Police Department found evidence indicating that O’Brien did not provide the drugs that ultimately took the life of Smith.

“The role of the District Attorney and law enforcement is to seek justice and not just convictions,” Sayers said. “Once a person is charged with a crime, that does not end the investigation. In the case of Patrick O’Brien, diligent police work uncovered evidence that shows the drugs that caused the death of Donna Smith were not from O’Brien. With that said, O’Brien still tampered with physical evidence and obstructed the investigation, and has pled guilty to those charges.”

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Sayers said O’Brien is potentially looking at a state prison sentence based on his prior record score and the gravity of the offenses he pled guilty to. His sentencing is expected to happen in the next 60 days.

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