Jeffery Jon Schumacher Sr., 58, Winona, was sentenced in District Court in the death of his 34-year-old son, Jeffery Jon Schumacher Jr. and for second-degree sale of controlled substance to a person under 18 years of age. Jeffery Jon Schumacher Sr. pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the second degree, after his son died from taking two methadone pills his father gave him after he complained of severe back pain. Schumacher Sr. was sentenced to 58 months in prison, with the possibility of parole in a little over two years. If released on parole he will be on supervised release for the remainder of his sentence. He also received a 48-month consecutive sentence for the second degree sale of controlled substance to a person under 18 years of age. The 48-month sentence will remained stayed as long as Schumacher abides by the conditions of his release. Schumacher was convicted of second-degree sale of a controlled substance to a person under 18 years of age after he reportedly gave a methadone pill to his nephew to calm him down after he found Schumacher Jr. dead.
Schumacher Sr. spoke to the court, noting that he only thought he was helping his son, who had taken methadone before for treatment of addiction. Schumacher Sr. stated that his son never really got off methadone and had been buying it off the street after his treatment was over. Schumacher Sr. believed his son was going to go to the emergency room after the methadone reduced the pain enough for him to move. Unfortunately, Schumacher Jr. refused to go to the hospital after taking the pills, his father said.
Schumacher Sr. became emotional as he told the court that he would take a much harsher sentence if it would just bring his son back. Assistant County Attorney Justin Andrew Weasley said he believed the two sentences struck an appropriate balance for the case, as Schumacher has already suffered the loss of his own son. Once the second-degree manslaughter sentence has been completed, Schumacher Sr. will be on probation for 25 years.