WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) – A woman whose death is at the center of a court case in Trumbull County is shining light on a new initiative by law enforcement to target drug dealers.
On a table just a few feet away from Myra and David Fitzgerald sits a picture of their daughter Megan Fitzgerald. For months, Megan battled her addiction to heroin. She went to rehab for three months in Tennessee, but a bad batch of heroin she received in April killed her.
An autopsy ruled the cause of death wasn’t heroin. Instead, it was a deadly dose of the narcotic fentanyl.
“She fought an endless battle every day. My husband found her just over there bent over,” said Megan’s mother Myra Fitzgerald.
Megan’s family quickly worked with the Trumbull Ashtabula Drug Task Force to find those responsible. Friday, Maurice Bryant, 27, was arraigned on multiple charges related to Megan’s death. He is charged with trafficking, corrupting another with drugs and involuntary manslaughter. Craig Liebel, 27, also faces drug trafficking charges.
“This is definitely not closure for us, but it is a piece of the puzzle,” Fitzgerald said. “We just never thought it would be Megan.”
Megan is just one of many faces across the Valley who have battled and died this year from heroin addiction. In Trumbull County, there have been at least 40 overdose deaths this year – making it one of the highest in Northeast Ohio.
As Myra Fitzgerald stands across the room from the urn holding Megan’s ashes, she reminiscences.
“She would put her arms around me, pat me on the head and say, ‘My little Mama.’ I think that is what I miss the most, but it makes me smile,’ Fitzgerald said.