A woman who admitted her involvement in a heroin trafficking case that authorities said was associated with two fatal overdoses was sentenced Tuesday to eight years in prison.
Stephanie Silvano, 43, was sentenced in Warren Circuit Court on a count of reckless homicide and three counts of first-degree possession of a controlled substance.
Local law enforcement investigating the 2019 deaths of Joshua Kinkade and Matthew Dobring developed Silvano as a suspect in both deaths.
Kinkade, 32, and Dobring, 38, were found dead two days apart at their homes in Bowling Green and Louisville, respectively.
Silvano was detained by police shortly after Kinkade died and, while in custody, provided information that she provided heroin to Kinkade and Dobring and identified Tracy Boyd as her supplier for heroin.
That information came out during the trial for Boyd, who was found guilty by a Warren Circuit Court jury of engaging in organized crime, first-degree trafficking in heroin, first-degree trafficking in methamphetamine and being a first-degree persistent felony offender.
Silvano was originally charged with two counts of second-degree manslaughter but accepted a plea agreement that dismissed the manslaughter count connected to Dobring’s death and reduced the other charge to reckless homicide in exchange for her truthful testimony against Boyd.
A third co-defendant, Scott Bernauer, was sentenced to six years in prison on charges of reckless homicide by complicity and first-degree possession of a controlled substance. He also testified against Boyd.
During Boyd’s trial, Silvano testified about obtaining packages of heroin at Boyd’s uncle’s apartment as well as about traveling with Boyd to Ohio for a resupply of drugs and about receiving advice from Boyd about how to effectively deal drugs without arousing suspicion from law enforcement.
“You got poison from Tracy Boyd and gave it to two young men who didn’t deserve it,” Warren Circuit Judge Steve Wilson said of the two overdoses tied to the investigation. “You made a business out of it. ... I hope it gets around that if you get caught in Bowling Green or Warren County doing this there is a steep punishment to come.”
Silvano’s attorney, Dennie Hardin, requested probation for his client, arguing that Silvano has done well while residing in a drug treatment center in Russellville, earning significant jail credit toward her eight-year sentence.
Wilson directed Silvano in December to go on a two-way program, allowing her to leave jail to receive treatment for drug addiction but requiring her to spend her nights in custody.
“I don’t believe she’s going to commit another offense,” Hardin said. “She is certainly on the right trajectory at this point.”
Warren County Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Adam Turner opposed probation, saying the plea agreement he reached with Silvano did not allow for probation as an option.
Turner pointed out that Silvano was cooperative with law enforcement after her arrest and provided valuable information during the investigation.
“I feel I’ve been pretty candid with her from the get-go what my position is,” Turner said. “I feel Ms. Silvano has been honest with me ... we still had two homicides in this case and I feel to change my position (against probation) would be unfair.”
– Follow courts reporter Justin Story on Twitter @jstorydailynews or visit bgdailynews.com.