UPDATE: Suspected dealer charged with murder in overdose death

Kristine Goodrich, The Free Press, Mankato, Minn.
·3 min read

Mar. 24—NORTH MANKATO — A Mankato man is charged with murder in the overdose death of a North Mankato man last fall.

Dorian Lashawn Langston, 41, is suspected of supplying the drugs that killed 32-year-old Jaeton Williams in September.

Langston was charged with third-degree murder Wednesday in Blue Earth County District Court.

Williams was found unresponsive in his residence in the Avalon Estates mobile home community in North Mankato on Sept. 24. Williams was taken to a hospital, placed on life support and died three days later.

An autopsy determined Williams died from a heroin, fentanyl and methamphetamine overdose.

"Mr. Williams death is a tragic reminder of the lethality of these substances," North Mankato Police Chief Ross Gullickson said in a statement. "I want to thank the members of the Minnesota River Valley Drug Task Force for their steadfast resolve in seeing this case through. The message to those who distribute this poison into our region and communities is clear: We will find you, and we will bring you to justice."

A court complaint gives the following account of the investigation:

The woman who called 911 told authorities she took dogs for a walk and found Williams on the floor when she returned.

First responders also had been called to treat Williams for an overdose earlier in the month. Langston, who has prior drug convictions, was at the residence during that overdose.

Investigators located Langston at another residence in North Mankato and arrested him on a prior unrelated warrant. He allegedly was in possession of methamphetamine and a brown powder that the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension determined was a combination of meth, heroin, fentanyl and trazodone.

The BCA also tested brown residue found on a spoon at Williams' residence. It was heroin, fentanyl and trazodone.

Minnesota River Valley Drug Task Force agents obtained warrants and reviewed Langston's social media messages and found multiple exchanges that appeared to involve drug sales, the charges said.

In another message sent a minute before the woman who found Williams called 911, Langston told the woman, "I need that pen dude went to sleep on me."

Investigators spoke with the woman again earlier this month and that time she provided more information. She said she suspected Langston was selling drugs. He was with Williams shortly before she found him unresponsive. She said he left on a walk because she wanted to distance herself from the drug sales.

Langston reportedly knew she carried nalaxone — an antidote for opioid overdoses. It often comes in a delivery device that resembles a pen. Investigators determined Langston used Williams' Wi-Fi to send the message about needing "that pen."

Langston was charged in Blue Earth County because Williams died in the Mankato hospital.

A warrant has been issued on the murder charge. Langston is in the Brown County Jail on unrelated drug sales charges.

In the Brown County case, filed in February 2020, Langston is accused of twice selling meth to police informants. Langston lived in New Ulm at that time and police searched his residence and allegedly found meth and cocaine.