Prison for York heroin dealer who sold deadly dose
A York City heroin dealer will spend at least nine years in prison for providing the heroin that killed a Paradise Township man nearly two years ago.
Angel Luis Alicea III, 27, of Edison Street, was sentenced Tuesday to nine to 20 years in state prison for his role in the death of 22-year-old Randy Crone III on Sept. 18, 2015, according to court records.
He received credit for time served and could be ordered to pay restitution at a later date, records state.
"It's a little bit above the standard (sentencing) range, but we knew it would be in that ballpark," defense attorney Ron Gross said of Alicea's sentence. "I'm not really surprised by it because my client has other pending criminal charges."
Jurors took about 90 minutes March 16 to find Alicea, known as "Bebo," guilty of drug delivery resulting in death. Charges were filed by Northern York County Regional Police.
'Ultimate price': "Randy Crone paid the ultimate price when he made the decision to inject himself with the heroin," senior deputy prosecutor Duane Ramseur said after the verdict. "However, that does not excuse the drug dealer who sold the drugs to Randy."
Gross said his client will appeal the conviction because Alicea sold the heroin to Michael Iberl, not to Crone. Iberl and Crone were friends, he said.
But Ramseur maintains it was Alicea's heroin that killed Crone and that Crone and Iberl bought the drugs together.
"Randy put in the majority of the money," he said — $80 to Iberl's $20 — and the two went together to buy heroin from Alicea.
"The only reason that Randy didn't do the hand-to-hand transaction is because Randy is the one who drove the car," Ramseur has said.
Under Pennsylvania law, Alicea is responsible for Crone's death, even though he handed the drugs to Iberl, according to the prosecutor.
Intimidation case: Alicea remains charged in two separate cases with drug dealing and with witness intimidation, the latter case for allegedly trying to convince Iberl not to testify against him.
In mid-July, Alicea and Iberl were inadvertently placed in the same holding cell while in the York County Judicial Center for a pretrial hearing, according to Gross.
Alicea allegedly told Iberl that the case against him "is all in your hands," and that "you can get this thrown out, all you have to do is change your story," according to court documents. Alicea allegedly said he has children and needs to get out of jail for them, documents allege.
"Alicea told Iberl that the most (punishment Iberl) would get would be a fine for perjury and that Alicea would pay off the fine for him if he changed his story and told the court that he lied at the preliminary hearing and to police," court documents state. "Alicea went on to tell Iberl that he was facing seven to 14 years."
Playing both sides? Gross said his client maintains the alleged conversation never happened.
"Mr. Iberl, we claim, is trying to play both sides," he said. "(Alicea) didn't need Mr. Iberl to change his story, because Mr. Iberl was a (good) witness for the defense."
According to Gross, at trial Iberl testified he and Crone used some of the heroin together, then Crone took the rest home.
According to Gross, Iberl also said he spoke with Crone on the phone hours later, at which point Crone had told him he'd already used the rest of the heroin.
"Mr. Crone must've already had other drugs in his room," Gross said. "That was our theory of the case."
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.