TOMS RIVER —A Lakewood man already charged with drug dealing is now accused of causing the heroin overdose death of the son of Seaside Heights mayor Bill Akers.
Jashon Jamiel Brinson, 28, was charged with manslaughter and drug distribution in the death of William Akers who was found unresponsive at his home on Oct. 16, Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato and Seaside Heights police chief Thomas Boyd said Tuesday.
They said Seaside Heights police were dispatched at 3:25 a.m. to respond to the call of an unconscious and unresponsive man at the Boulevard apartment. There they found the younger Akers, 29, in a bedroom of the second-floor apartment. He was pronounced dead at 3:50 a.m.
In the bedroom near the body investigators found narcotics and narcotics paraphernalia, officials said.
The investigation led authorities to arrest Brinson the following day and charge him with possession of narcotics and possession with intent to distribute.
While police had linked Akers' death to a drug overdose, they hadn't identified Brinson as a suspect until recently, following an investigation assisted by the Lakewood and Toms River police departments, Coronato said.
The final confirmation, the prosecutor said, was the Ocean County Medical Examiner's report, which concluded Akers' death was induced by drugs.
The U.S. Marshals Service found Brinson in Asbury Park on March 6 and served him with the prosecutor's arrest warrant, Coronato said. Brinson is being held in the Ocean County Jail in Toms River in lieu of $250,000 cash bail.
Including this case, the prosecutor's office has brought charges in 18 cases involving drug-induced deaths since March 2013. Six of those defendants have pleaded guilty to strict liability charges and two have admitted to drug offenses, with prison sentences averaging six to seven years, said Al Della Fave, spokesman for the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office.
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