A Delavan man is charged with delivering pills to an uncle who later died of an overdose, according to documents filed in Walworth County Court.
The girlfriend of Glen K. Szerkins, 58, of Elkhorn found him dead May 24 in a chair in the living room of his home, according to the criminal complaint.
On Sept. 26, Walworth County prosecutors charged Glen’s nephew, Michael A. Szerkins II, 36, of 1702 Birchwood St., No. 4, with delivering alprazolam, which is a Schedule IV drug. He was arrested last week.
Michael was not charged with first-degree reckless homicide. Such “Len Bias” prosecutions—named after a basketball player who died of a cocaine overdose in 1986 shortly after he was drafted into the NBA—go after the dealers of drugs that kill others.
According to state law, however, that charge is based on the delivery of controlled substances that fall into the schedule I or II categories.
In an email to The Gazette, Assistant District Attorney Haley Johnson said the type of drug does influence which charge prosecutors choose, but “there is a potential” the charge Michael faces could change.
Johnson said she could not provide more information about the case.
Court documents, including a recently filed search warrant, paint a picture of how police and prosecutors believe Glen died.
At about 4:30 p.m. May 23, Glen’s girlfriend said he came inside from working in the driveway and was acting strangely and taking shallow breaths, the complaint states. He told her he took “candy.”
After Glen fell asleep, his girlfriend saw pills that said “Sweet Tarts” sitting on his lap and asked Michael what he gave Glen, according to the complaint.
“What did Glen eat he came in from outside and almost fell over. Don’t know if I should call 911,” Glen’s girlfriend said in a text message to Michael, according to court documents.
“He is just sleeping no worries he got some zanex,” Michael responded, likely referring to Xanax, a tranquilizer.
Nearly 12 hours after he came inside, Elkhorn police at about 4:13 a.m. May 24 responded to an Elkhorn home on Alex Drive for a report that Glen was unresponsive, according to the complaint. Police seized several pills from the home.
Earlier in the week, Glen had slept for 15 hours in one night, his girlfriend told police.
Police on June 7 reviewed text messages from Glen’s phone.
“Waz up You in Elkhorn I got something for you,” Michael wrote to Glen on May 21.
A crime lab analyst tested four of the 15 “Sweet Tarts” from Glen’s home and found the presence of alprazolam, according to the complaint.
About a month after Michael was charged and an arrest warrant was issued, police arrested him in Delavan on Oct. 22 on a warrant charging him with selling barbiturates, court documents say.
Glen was born in Chicago in 1959, according to his obituary, and was a carpenter throughout his life. He loved Harley-Davidson motorcycles, the outdoors and watching eagles.
Michael posted $2,000 cash for his bond Oct. 24, court records show. He is not allowed to contact Glen’s girlfriend.
Michael is set to make his next court appearance at 1:15 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 8.