Woman Charged With Third Degree Murder For Heroin Overdose Death

On April 14, 2017, the Harrisburg Police arrested Nicole M. Murray, 34 of Harrisburg, and charged her with Third Degree Murder, Drug Delivery Resulting in Death and other related charges for an incident that took place on July 5, 2016.  On that date, Harrisburg Police were dispatched to an apartment in the 100 block of Evergreen Street,  Harrisburg, for a reported heroin overdose.  Upon entering, police observed the victim, Christine Schechterly, age 42, lying on the floor.  EMS attempted to revive her but were unable to do so.  An autopsy concluded that her cause of death was multiple drug toxicity and that the manner of death was homicide. 

Witnesses told police that Schechterly had never used heroin before and that Murray urged Schechterly to use the heroin.  It is alleged that Murray sold the heroin to Schecterly and even prepared the syringe for injection.  Witnesses also informed police that Murray herself overdosed only a few weeks earlier.  In that incident, Harrisburg police discovered Murray unresponsive at the same location with a syringe sticking out of her left hand.  A Harrisburg officer saved her life by using narcan (an opioid reversal medication) and she regained consciousness.  After being informed that she had overdosed, Murray replied “again?"

The case is being prosecuted by Dauphin County Senior Deputy District Attorney Stephen R. Zawisky. 

Murray is being held in the Dauphin County Prison without bail due to the nature of the charges and is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on April 24, 2017.  The charges are mere allegations at this time as she is presumed innocent.