Derry Township man pleads to drug charge in friend’s overdose death
A Derry Township man pleaded guilty Monday to selling doses of fentanyl-laced heroin blamed for the fatal overdose two years ago of his friend in a Greensburg apartment.
Westmoreland County prosecutors charged Glenn A. Levtzow with drug delivery resulting in death and child endangerment in connection with the Nov. 18, 2017, overdose of Ryan Powell, 34, in his East Pittsburgh Street apartment. Powell died two days later at Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital.
Levtzow, according to court records, confessed that he purchased heroin, gave some to Powell and sold more to him later that day in return for other drugs. Police said Powell overdosed on the drugs and was found unresponsive in a bathroom by Levtzow and another woman.
Police said Levtzow broke through a locked door in an attempt to help Powell and fled the apartment after 911 was called. Levtzow was found later in a parked vehicle and suspected of being under the influence of drugs. Two young children, ages 6 and 3, and drug paraphernalia were in the vehicle that was parked near where Powell lived, police said.
In court Monday, Levtzow said he initially wished to challenge the charges against him at trial but ultimately decided pleading guilty was in his best interest.
“I just want to get this over with,” Levtzow said.
Common Pleas Court Judge Christopher Feliciani said he will sentence Levtzow next month after receiving a modified report about his criminal background and drug addictions.
Defense attorney Patricia Elliott-Rentler said Levtzow has been drug free since his arrest. A toxicology screen conducted Monday at the courthouse determined Levtzow had no drugs in his system, the judge said.
“A reduced sentence is contingent on you remaining clean,” Feliciani said.
Levtzow had been in jail without bond since his arrest in November 2017. He was released on nominal bond in May after the judge ruled Levtzow’s speedy trial rights had been violated. He will remain free on bond until he is sentenced.
Elliott-Rentler said she will ask that Levtzow not serve any additional time behind bars and that Powell’s mother has indicated she did not consent to the prosecution of her son’s friend.
“She believes her son was an adult and made his own decisions,” Elliott-Rentler said.
Levtzow’s girlfriend, Erin Long, 34, of Ruffsdale, was charged with child endangerment and drug counts. According to court records, police said she was with Levtzow when he gave the drugs to Powell. Her case was postponed Monday and scheduled for a guilty plea next month.
Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Rich at 724-830-6293, [email protected] or via Twitter .