Fiancée charged in fatal overdose at L. Towamensing job site
Police have charged a Monroe County woman in the overdose death of her fiancée, a contractor who died at a job site in Lower Towamensing Township last year.
Joshua Kiernan, 32, died Dec. 11 after being found unconscious by coworkers at a home where they were working on Fireline Road. A toxicology test determined he died from heroin and fentanyl found in his system.
Police say that 30-year-old Kaleigh Watson, Kiernan’s fiancée, participated in the sale of the heroin the previous day.
According to court papers, here’s what happened:
On Dec. 10, police said Watson paid a man to pick up heroin and drove him to meet another woman who would take him to New Jersey to pick it up.
That night, as Kiernan returned home from work, he picked up the drugs from the man outside a Dollar General store in Jackson Township.
The man and woman who drove to New Jersey, Jeremy Johnson of Reeders and Susan Nickas of Stroudsburg, have both been charged in federal court for their role in Kiernan’s death, because they traveled out of state.
Facebook messages between Watson and Johnson showed that she planned to drive him to meet Nickas the afternoon of Dec. 10.
Nickas’ phone records showed that she was in contact with Johnson and an unidentified person with a New York phone number. The person told her to meet them on ‘Potomac’, which police said was in Paterson, New Jersey.
Kiernan’s truck, provided by his employer, had a GPS tracker. On Dec. 10, it showed his only stop other than work and home was the Dollar General, located a short distance from Johnson’s house.
Watson told police that later that night, they both used heroin that night and Kiernan overdosed – less than 24 hours before his fatal overdose. She said she revived him, and they fought about getting clean because one of them was going to die.
On Dec. 11, the work truck GPS tracker showed that Kiernan drove directly to work the next day.
Coworkers found Kiernan unconscious in the bathroom later that day. Troopers found heroin stamped “Rite Aid” and a syringe in the bathroom.
Watson and Kiernan lived with their 6-year-old daughter.
Police charged Watson with possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, and endangering the welfare of children.
She was charged and released on $30,000 bail. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Aug. 10 at District Court in Bartonsville.