4 Feb 2011

Man jailed over fatal heroin dose

4:04 pm on 4 February 2011

A man who admitted injecting another man with a fatal dose of heroin has been jailed for two years and four months.

Philip Caswell, 45, earlier pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Michael Louis and was sentenced in the Wellington High Court on Friday.

The men had met at a house in Wellington where morphine sulphate was cooked into heroin.

Caswell noticed an air bubble in the syringe that Mr Louis was about to use and removed it, then injected Mr Louis with the drug.

Mr Louis collapsed and later died in Wellington Hospital. A post-mortem revealed he had used a number of other drugs that day.

His mother told the court she did not believe Caswell had intended to harm her son and did not want him to go to prison.

But Justice Mackenzie said there was a need for deterrence and home detention was not appropriate.