Albert Lea man gets 5 yrs. for overdose death

Published 2:13 pm Saturday, July 9, 2016

APPLE VALLEY — An Albert Lea man who pleaded guilty to second-degree manslaughter last month in connection with the overdose death of an Albert Lea teenager in 2015 was sentenced to nearly five years in prison Friday in Dakota County District Court.

Dustin Chenevert, 27, was charged with providing methadone and other pain pills to 18-year-old Colton Poplow, also of Albert Lea, who died in a South St. Paul hotel room on Feb. 28, 2015.

Under the plea agreement, Chenevert faces more than three years in prison and more than a year and a half of supervised release, depending on good behavior.

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Chenevert was given credit for 488 days served.

Prior to Chenevert’s sentencing, family members of Colton Poplow testified to the loss they have faced and the impact his life had on them.

Colton Poplow’s father, Roger Poplow, said the loss of Colton Poplow has left him with anxiety and other problems, noting he was not able to sleep for months after his death.

“I miss him dearly,” he said.

He said Chenvert’s decision to sell pills has negatively affected his son’s entire family.

Pictures of Colton Poplow and those close to him were shown before Dakota County District Court Judge Jerome B. Abrams.

Colton Poplow’s mother, Darlene Federly, gave a biographical account of her son’s school days and his death, and noted what she thought he would tell the courtroom if he were still alive from his perspective.

She initiated a moment of silence and finished her victim’s impact statement by reading what her son would want the family to do, and directly forgave Chenevert for his role in her son’s death.

Other family members testified to how Colton Poplow’s death has affected them and other family members.

Prior to sentencing, Chenevert’s lawyer, Dannia Edwards, said Chenevert did not want Colton Poplow’s family to have to go through a trial and to speak ill of him.

She said Chenevert has taken responsibility for the incident, noting he is grateful for forgiveness and wants to educate people on the danger of the illegal use of prescription drugs after he is released from prison.

Edwards declined to comment after sentencing.

Following sentencing, Federly said Colton Poplow touched many people’s lives.

“He was a person who would go out of his way to do anything for anyone,” she said. “Always a shoulder to lean on.”

Federly said the sentencing did not alleviate the family’s loss.

“It’s just a lose-lose situation for all of us,” she said.

About Sam Wilmes

Sam Wilmes covers crime, courts and government for the Albert Lea Tribune.

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