Fatal overdose leads to charges

Sandusky couple faces manslaughter
Courtney Astolfi
Apr 17, 2014


A Sandusky couple was arrested this week for their alleged roles in the June 2013 overdose death of a Perkins Township man.

Justin Posey, 24, of the 1500 block of McDonough St., was charged with complicity to commit involuntary manslaughter, corrupting another with drugs, five counts of drug trafficking and two counts of complicity to drug trafficking.

Sarah Spears, 29, also of the 1500 block of McDonough St., was charged with complicity to commit involuntary manslaughter, drug trafficking, complicity to commit drug trafficking, corrupting another with drugs and permitting drug abuse.

Zackary Slone, 24, was found dead in his Pioneer Trail home the morning of June 1. His roommate later told Perkins police that Slone was behaving erratically the night before, according to a police report.

After having a few drinks at Cheers, Slone and his roommate returned home. Slone then began disappearing into the bathroom for long stretches, emerging each time with an increasingly dazed look on his face, the report said.

Before she went to bed, Slone’s roommate and a friend carried a snoring Slone to the couch. By the time the roommate awoke the next morning, Slone had already died.

A coroner determined Slone died from combined drug toxicity due to a fatal cocktail of oxycodone, Xanax and alcohol. The amount of oxycodone alone in Slone’s blood was nearing toxic levels at the time of his death, the report said.

At the time, Perkins police Detective Joe Rotuno was already two weeks into a drug trafficking investigation involving Posey and Spears.

A criminal informant conducted multiple pill purchases with Posey, at least one with Spears and also a few times in which both were present.    

Two of those buys occurred within 1,000 feet of schools. In multiple deals, Spears brought her young children along for the ride, Rotuno said.

Then, a day or so after Slone’s overdose, Rotuno’s informant caught wind of his death. Knowing Slone was close with Spears and Posey, the informant told them of his demise.

“It must have been all the Zanny’s,” Posey said, according to the report. Spears was heard in the background, becoming increasingly upset.

Posey later told the informant he sold Slone 30 Xanax and three Percocet the night he died, Rotuno said.

Officers also obtained Slone’s cellphone records, which showed he texted Posey and inquired about buying pills, the report said.

Five days after Slone’s death, Rotuno fitted the informant with a wire. The informant again contacted Posey for another transaction.

During that conversation, Posey spoke about seeing Slone the day he died. He also said Slone contacted him at about 2:30 a.m. on the morning of his death, seeking more pills, but Slone never showed up.

Posey went on to say he felt awful and it wasn’t his fault because Slone was mixing drugs and alcohol.

“Posey states that he could catch a manslaughter charge for it” the report said.

Spears then joined the conversation. She allegedly spoke of Slone’s funeral and how she had lectured him about drinking and taking pills.

Rotuno presented the case last month to a grand jury, which indicted both Posey and Spears for their alleged involvement in the overdose. Posey was already in the Erie County jail on unrelated charges, so deputies served him his new charges there.

Rotuno said Posey tipped Spears off about her looming charges. Officers responded to Spears’ father’s Brandon Boulevard home Tuesday, but the man claimed Spears was not there, Rotuno said.

When he was confronted with the possibility of an obstruction charge, the father allowed officers inside. They found Spears hiding in a laundry room, Rotuno said.

Posey’s bond is $150,000 for the new charges, while Spears remains in jail on $115,000 bond.


he said she said

Didn't know Slone but know who the roommate is. She tried to put on a brave face when he was found dead but it still devastated her. And now this coming back up again...I feel for her. Keeping you in my thoughts....

Dwight K.


sandtown born a...

Sandusky is full af pill heads, heroin and crack heads! Start locking them up instead of the usual slap on the wrist then maybe results will follow


here is what im going to say and say it ONCE. this article is about my son. if you say anything derogatory or negative regarding him or his death, then you can personally speak with myself or one of my other children. he made his mistakes, but he is DEAD NOW. HAVE SOME RESPECT!!! this has just about killed all of us. with them behind bars, it will at least prevent one more death today, tomorrow and into the future. i know his roommate and she and i r close. we get thru things like this together. RIP ZAS


Don't piss off a Mom.
Silly rabbits.
Tell 'em again clydemommy, I don't think they got it the first time.


Clydemommy. I personally don't think u should b here putting yourself through what people say here. You remember your son one way. All we seen is a person addicted to drugs who overdosed. Also threatening people like you did shows a low life mentality. Makes me wonder if his drug habit was homegrown.


ummmm richrs who ever said he was addicted to anything. get ur facts straight!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! my son is dead. ur obvious a worthless piece of trash. ur a homegrown piece of garbage........ anytime you want to discuss my son personally, u just let me know loser

sandtown born a...

I understand your in a lot of pain but to argue the obvious isn't gonna help the pain, especially on here, he obviously had issues as a lot of people do, it's just sad the end result. My thoughts are with you


Sticks and stones. My last comment on this thread cant waste my time.


richrs, HOW DARE YOU insult a grieving mother in such a way??!!!. regardless of the circumstances, that is just LOW! God forbid you ever lose a child and have to grieve such a loss only to have some insensitive and disrespectful jerk bully you around in such an ignorant way. Clyde mommy, I an truly sorry for your loss, I didn't know your son but I could not imagine losing one of mine. my deepest sympathies to you and your family.


richrs your assumption was inappropriate and to imply that it was home grown is very hurtful to that family. You seriously need to be a man and apologize. This young man Mr Sloan made a mistake and it cost him his life, -very sad. Everyday you walk past people that have made the exact same mistake and simply got lucky their still here. These 2 drug pushers should spend a very long time behind bars. Clydemommy, thank you for still standing up for your son.


If he wanted to buy those drugs, and the defendants hadn't sold them to him, someone else would have.

Unless someone has evidence that someone forced those pills down his throat, this was a self inflicted fatality and these charges are illegitimate. Why should these two people spend any more time behind bars than a car dealer who sells a car to an alcoholic who then gets behind the wheel drunk and stuffs it into a bridge abutment?

You said it yourself - HE made the mistake that cost his life.


My heart breaks for you Clydemommy, no matter what your child does, what havoc they reek, what pain they cause you always love them and feel some sense of "if I only had" even when you know you did everything you possibly could have. Prayers.




I worked with Zach for some weeks before his passing. He was a good kid, he is missed!