Man gets 6 years in prison for providing drugs that killed friend
By Jim Newton firstname.lastname@example.org September 25, 2013 7:30PM
Brian Stedronsky, 33, of Ingleside weeps as victim impact statements are read during his sentencing hearing before Lake County judge Mark Levitt Wednesday in Waukegan. Stedronsky received a 6-year-sentence after pleading guilty to selling a fatal dose of a potent pain medication to Jeffrey Ferris in 2012. Steve Lundyemail@example.com ORG XMIT: 23123_
Updated: October 28, 2013 7:14AM
An Ingleside man, who provided a friend with the prescription pain medication that killed him, was sentenced to six years in prison Wednesday in Lake County Circuit Court.
Brian Stedronsky, 33, who had pleaded guilty to attempted drug-induced homicide in a negotiated plea that reduced an initial charge of drug-induced homicide, cried softly as victim impact statements were read from the family of Jeffrey Ferris, 30, who was found dead in his home in Ingleside last September.
Stedronsky’s mother, Carolyn Stedronsky, 52, is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday morning under a separate guilty plea involving the same case. She took Fentanyl patches from her husband and sold them to her son, authorities said. Fentanyl is a synthetic opiate more potent than morphine used to treat patients with severe pain, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
Kimberly Carroll, who testified briefly at the hearing Sept. 25, said both Brian Stedronsky and Ferris were friends and that she misses both and considers them both good people. She called Stedronsky “big-hearted” and said he would do anything for a friend, and she remembered Ferris as a “high-fiving, fun-loving guy.”
“Unfortunately, both guys had big demons,” she said.
Prior to being sentenced, Stedronsky made a brief statement, in which he said he used to think drugs were cool and fun, but he doesn’t feel that way anymore. He apologized to the Ferris family and his own family, including his daughter, and said he thinks about Jeffrey Ferris every day.
“I want Jeff’s family to know how truly sorry I am for their loss,” he said.
Ferris family members said in person and through written statements how much his death has affected their lives. His girlfriend asked Assistant State’s Attorney Suzanne Willett to show a picture of her with Jeffrey to Judge Mark Levitt.
His older brother, Scott Ferris, said his family, friendships and career have all been affected negatively since the morning he received a phone call from his sister telling him Jeffrey had died.
“It’s impossible to describe how I felt that morning and for the months that followed,” he said.
Levitt noted Stedronsky’s long prior history with drugs and prior arrests, but also his chance to rehabilitate himself, in handing down the sentence. He granted a request from Stedronsky to ask that the Department of Corrections allow him drug and alcohol counseling while in prison.
If convicted on the original charge of drug-induced homicide, Brian Stedronsky would have faced six to 30 years in prison upon conviction. Levitt said Stedronsky will be given credit for the 288 days he has already served in Lake County Jail toward his prison term.
Under sentencing guidelines for the Class 1 felony, Stedronsky will serve 50 percent of the remaining sentence.