MAPLE SHADE, NJ -- Two drug dealers from Maple Shade have been charged with causing the death of a Medford Township man who fatally overdosed on methamphetamine they sold to him early last year, the Burlington County Prosecutor's Office announced on Monday.
Joshua Lanigan, 39, of Woodbine Road, and Jeanine Hughes, 44, of Cropwell Drive, were charged with Strict Liability for Drug-Induced Death (First Degree), Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance (Third Degree), Distribution of a Controlled Dangerous Substance (Third Degree), and Conspiracy to Distribute a Controlled Dangerous Substance (Third Degree).
The defendants were taken into custody January 15 in Maple Shade. Hughes was transported to the Atlantic County Justice Facility in Mays Landing, and Lanigan was lodged in the Burlington County Jail in Mount Holly.
The body of the victim, 38-year-old Andrew Shelley, was discovered March 18, 2020, by a man hiking in a wooded area just off of Route 70 in Medford Township. The investigation into Shelley’s disappearance had begun February 18, 2020, after his family contacted police and reported him missing.
The probe broadened after it was suspected that illegal narcotics played a role in his death. This was confirmed by an autopsy performed by the Burlington County Medical Examiner that determined Shelley died of methamphetamine toxicity.
The investigation revealed that the drugs used by Shelley during his fatal overdose had been purchased from Lanigan and Hughes, who delivered them to his home in mid-February 2020.
All persons are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.