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Waukesha woman sought in Hartland man's drug death

June 27, 2013

A warrant was issued Wednesday for a 41-year-old Waukesha woman charged with allegedly providing the methadone that killed Hartland resident Corey S. Patz in March.

Beth A. Irving was charged June 26 in Waukesha County Circuit Court with first-degree reckless homicide, delivery of a schedule II narcotic drug and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Irving allegedly got the Methadone, typically used to treat heroin and narcotic addiction, from a drug addiction clinic in Waukesha.

According to the criminal complaint:

Hartland Police were dispatched at 4 a.m. March 27 to 335 Hartridge Drive after receiving reports of an apparent overdose.

Police found Irving in Patz’s bedroom performing chest compressions on the unconscious 26-year-old man. Paramedics transported Patz to Oconomowoc Memorial Hospital, where he later died.

Police spoke to Irving, who at first denied that drugs were in any way involved in Patz’s death. She said they had gone out earlier in the night and she had fallen asleep on the couch. When she awoke, she claimed, Patz was on the floor.

A search of Irving’s vehicle turned up a pink lockbox containing various drug paraphernalia and a 200 miligram Methadone pill bottle prescribed to Irving by Dr. Goldstone. Goldstone is a doctor for Waukesha’s Quality Addiction Management (QAM)

QAM Clinic Manager Rob McCreadie said that only liquid Methadone is provided through QAM’s narcotics management program. Methadone pills can be acquired through QAM’s pain management program, but McCreadie could not say if that was how Irving got that prescription because of a confidentiality agreement.

Asked whether someone could be enrolled in both programs, McCreadie said: “Some people with chronic pain issues could be admitted, yes.”

According to drugs.com, Methadone is an opioid pain reliever, similar to morphine, used to treat heroin and narcotic drug addiction. The pill typically does not induce a “high” in users, unlike other narcotics, according to the website.

McCreadie said methadone is the preferred and most effective treatment for addicts over a long period of time.

“There is no rush, no euphoria or anything associated with it,” McCreadie said.

Several other items of drug paraphernalia were found on Patz’s desk, as well as a prescription box of Suboxone, another narcotic drug used to treat addiction. The complaint does not indicate how Patz acquired that prescription.

Irving told police that she was a patient at the methadone clinic and had been prescribed the 200 milligram “take-home” pill two days earlier, on March 25. She said the clinic issued the pill because it was closed on Tuesday, information police verified with McCreadie.

On Tuesday, March 26 Patz was pressuring her to give him the methadone pill, Irving said.

“You gotta help me out, babe,” he said, according to Irving. “I help you out.”

Irving said she sold the pill to Patz for $20 and they spent the night snorting crushed Xanax.

Patz’s cause of death was later determined to be a combination overdose of methadone and alprazolam, also known under the brand name Xanax.

Irving could face more than 55 years in prison or $150,000 in fines if convicted.

Her cash bail is set at $10,000.

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