Wolfson pleads no contest

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 12, 2002

An Ironton lawyer will serve six months at the Star Criminal Justice Center and five years community controlled sanctions under intensive supervision for his actions in connection with the death of an Ironton man.

Richard Wolfson, 43, pleaded no contest yesterday in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court to a charge of tampering with evidence in connection with the death of Eric Deer, who died at Wolfson's Park Avenue law office earlier this year. After he entered his plea, Judge Frank McCown found him guilty of the charge and sentenced him. A charge of obstruction of justice was nullified.

If Wolfson violates the terms of his sentence, he could be sent to prison for up to three years. He will report to authorities Jan. 18.

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"It's tragic what happened to Eric Deer," Lawrence County prosecutor J.B Collier Jr. said. "This young man lost his life. It's also sad that Wolfson basically threw his career away. He will undoubtedly lose his law license. During the investigation

it came out that Wolfson suffered from addictions to various medications. He needs to get his life back in focus."

On March 23, Eric Deer, 24, died after receiving a fatal dose of Fentanyl, a synthetic morphine patch.

Wolfson is the third person to be sentenced in connection with Deer's death. In June, Deer's father, Gerald Deer, 48, of Ironton, pleaded guilty to corrupting another with drugs and involuntary manslaughter, both second-degree felonies. He was sentenced to four years on each count, which will be served consecutively,

Additionally, he was fined $7,500.

In August, Richard Wolfson's wife, Mary Wolfson, 24, pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice in connection with the death. She was sentenced to three years community controlled sanctions under intensive supervised probation.