State prison for York City man who sold opioids to friend who fatally overdosed

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch
Israel Estrella

A York City man has been sentenced to at least three years in state prison for selling drugs to his close friend, who later died of an opioid overdose.

Israel King Estrella, 36, of East Hope Avenue, appeared in York County Court on Monday, where he was sentenced to three to six years in prison for his felony convictions of drug possession with intent to deliver and using a computer to further a crime.

He was given credit for the 732 days he spent in York County Prison awaiting resolution of his criminal case, court records state.

Jurors found him guilty of the two felonies on Oct. 28 but deadlocked on the charges of drug delivery resulting in death and involuntary manslaughter, court records state.

Defense attorney Rick Robinson said he doesn't yet know whether prosecutors intend to retry his client on the two charges jurors couldn't agree on. 

The background: York City Police said Estrella provided a fatal dose of opioids to Justin Shifflett, 36, of York.

Shifflett died on April 22, 2018, of mixed drug toxicity, officials have said.

He was found unresponsive in his Stevens Avenue home about 7:30 a.m. and pronounced dead at the scene, according to police.

Shifflett's father told investigators that Estrella and his son were best friends, according to court documents.

Police analyzed Shifflett's phone and found that he had been texting someone named "Macho," who was later identified as Estrella, authorities said. 

Israel King Estrella

Shifflett asked to buy $60 worth of heroin but said he couldn't leave his home because his girlfriend was there, documents state.

Estrella offered to bring the drugs to him for $70, officials said.

Sat in car: Shifflett's father told police that Estrella came to their home the night before Shifflett's death, according to police. Shifflett and Estrella went to Estrella's car, sat in it for a few minutes, then Shifflett returned while Estrella drove away, court documents state.

Shifflett's father said his son and his son's girlfriend spent the rest of his night in his room, according to police.

Shifflett's girlfriend told police that the two were watching a movie, but Shifflett went to the bathroom for about five minutes during the middle of it, documents state. She said he came back, and a short time later he slumped over and began snoring, officials said.

She thought he was sleeping, so she went to bed, documents state. Police said she woke up in the morning and found Shifflett unresponsive.

— Reach senior crime reporter Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.