COVINGTON, La. (WGNO) — A man pled guilty in a North Shore courtroom this week following the 2017 heroin death of a Slidell woman.
District Attorney Warren Montgomery reports that 43-year-old Oren Rapp Bowens of Slidell stopped his trial before his defense began.
The trial began on Monday, April 25 for the 2017 heroin overdose of a Slidell woman who detectives say received the drugs from Bowens. Her name was not given.
On October 15, 2017, the woman’s boyfriend reportedly purchased heroin from Bowens. The couple then shared the drugs, unaware that it would lead to the woman’s death hours later.
The woman later died at a hospital after being diagnosed with a brain abscess. According to the St. Tammany Parish Coroner’s Office, the abscess was worsened by heroin toxicity.
After pleading guilty in court, Bowens was sentenced to 50 years of prison for the following charges:
- Possession to distribute heroin
- Distribution of heroin
- Possession of buprenorphine
The woman’s father was at the trial and gave an impact statement. Officials say he “expressed his frustration with drug dealers preying on those suffering from addiction,” adding that he hopes no other family has to go through what he experienced with the loss of his daughter.
Bowens was represented by attorney Barry Ranshi and co-counsel John Mason. Ranshi issued a statement following the guilty plea:
“My client, Mr. Bowens, was a multiple offender under Louisiana law and would have been a mandatory lifer, meaning he would have spent his life in prison. Considering those circumstances, my client felt that it was in his best interest to accept the state’s offer.”