No jury for opioid overdose murder trial
The Maplewood woman charged in the opioid overdose deaths of five men will go on trial Tuesday in Hennepin County District Court for two of those deaths.
Prosecutors say Beverly Nicole Burrell, 31, sold heroin to Max Tillett and to his friend Lucas Ronnei.
Tillett died immediately after injecting heroin he allegedly bought from Burrell in the parking lot of a Minneapolis restaurant in September 2015, according to court documents.
Ronnei died from an overdose in January 2016.
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Burrell is facing third-degree murder and drug sale charges in each of those cases.
Ronnei's mother Colleen told MPR News that her son was fighting to stay sober. She said that when she found out Ronnei was using, she confronted the woman who was selling him drugs. Police say that dealer was Burrell.
In court Monday, Burrell signed a document in front of Judge Paul Scoggin waiving her right to a jury trial. Instead, the evidence will be presented in court in front of the judge.
Court documents show that the trial could also include Burrell's alleged ties to the deaths of Dustin Peltier, Spencer Johnson and Neil Petrick, all of whom died of overdoses in April 2016. Those cases may be tried later.