Man accused of causing death of Coon Rapids woman

A man has been accused in Anoka County District Court of causing the death of a Coon Rapids woman by giving her a controlled substance, specifically morphine.

Jerry McCleskey
Jerry McCleskey

Jerry Lynn McCleskey, 59, 7589 Lyric Lane NE, Fridley, is due back in court Aug. 6 on a felony third-degree murder charge.

At his arraignment July 9, bail for McCleskey was set at $50,000 and he was ordered to have no use of mood-altering chemicals or alcohol and to submit to random urinalysis and breath testing on demand.

Coon Rapids Police responded to a home on the 10300 block of Butternut Street NW Aug. 26, 2012 on a report of an adult female not breathing and cold to touch.

On arrival, police met with the 911 caller, McCleskey, who told officers he had spent the night with the woman at her residence because she was not feeling well and when he awoke that morning, she was nonresponsive.

The woman was pronounced dead at the scene and taken to the Midwest Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy.

According to the complaint, police located three pills on a table next the woman’s body with the inscription MS30 on them and when interviewed at the scene, McCleskey admitted the pills were his and he had given her two of them that evening, plus one the day before and one the day or two before that.

MS30 is a morphine sulfate, according to an Internet search.

En route to the county jail, McCleskey allegedly stated it was possible that the medication he had given the woman, a couple of them, might cause her death, but he did not give her enough to cause an overdose.

McCleskey’s roommate, when interviewed by an Anoka County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division detective, alleged that McCleskey had called him the morning of Aug. 26, 2012 in a panic stating that the girl was cold and dead.

The roommate told McCleskey to call 911 and he was asked to go to the Butternut Street residence, where he found McCleskey had not yet called 911 and alleged he was given a prescription bottle of pills by McCleskey and told to take it home.

The roommate gave the detective the bottle of pills, which had etchings of MS and 30 on them and they appeared to be a match for those found near the woman’s body, according to the complaint.

In an interview with the detective Aug. 28, 2012, McCleskey allegedly admitted giving the woman five pills and he watched her take a couple.

He also alleged that the woman asked him to bring the pills over to her and he gave her five in a plastic baggie Aug. 25, 2012.

The complaint alleges that the woman’s cell phone records show text messages between her and McCleskey in which she asks him if he has any more pills to share and him responding that he does and will be over soon.

Toxicology tests performed during the autopsy “show a morphine level associated with toxicity as well as a cyclobenazaprine level supratherapeutic.

Cyclobenazaprine is a muscle relaxant to help alleviate pain, while supratherapeutic means above the therapeutic level, according to an Internet search.

A review of the woman’s prescription history revealed none for morphine or cyclobenazaprine.

Peter Bodley is at [email protected]

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