Woman Accused in Fentanyl Death to Be Arraigned in Clarion County Court Today

CLARION CO., Pa. (EYT) – One of the two women charged in the 2016 fentanyl death of a Clarion man will be arraigned in District Court on Friday, June 23.

According to court documents, 41-year-old Elva Marie Warner-Confer (pictured above) – currently in Muncy State Prison on unrelated charges – is scheduled for arraignment in District Judge Timothy Schill’s office at 9:30 a.m. on June 23 on the following charges:

– Manufacture, Delivery, or Possession With Intent to Manufacture or Deliver, Felony (two counts)
– Drug Delivery Resulting In Death, Felony 1

Warner-Confer has served time for various drug offenses in Clarion County.

Warner-Confer and Jennifer Lorraine Best, 58, of Shippenville, (pictured on left) were recently charged by the Pennsylvania State Police and Office of Attorney General.


Both individuals were charged with drug delivery resulting in death – a charge the Office of Attorney General is using to confront drug dealing amidst the opioid epidemic raging across the Commonwealth.

Best was arraigned on June 16.

Both individuals face preliminary hearings at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, June 27.

Best remains lodged in the Clarion County Jail on $100,000.00 cash bail.

The Office of Attorney General worked closely with the Pennsylvania State Police and Clarion County District Attorney’s Office on this case and brought it before a statewide grand jury, which heard testimony, reviewed evidence, and recommended the charges against Best and Confer.

Court documents state that Donald Leroy Brown, 35, was found dead in his home on April 2, 2016. In the days before his death, Brown went to a pain clinic, where he was denied prescriptions. Brown called Confer and told her he needed fentanyl patches.

The day before Brown died, Warner-Confer confirmed to a witness that she provided Brown with three fentanyl patches that she had bought from Best.

The toxicology report revealed Brown died of a fatal fentanyl overdose. Investigators discovered a fentanyl patch at Warner-Confer’s residence that had been cut into pieces, a common way for drug users to abuse the patch form of fentanyl.

The investigation also uncovered pharmacy records that showed Best filled two prescriptions for 10 fentanyl patches in the month prior to Brown’s death.

“The opioid painkiller involved in this case is one of the most powerful ever made available by prescription,” said Clarion County District Attorney Mark Aaron. “The diversion of these powerful drugs from their intended use far too often lead to tragic, unnecessary deaths like this one.”

“Every overdose death is treated as a possible homicide,” said Lieutenant Christopher J. Neal, Criminal Investigations Section Commander of the Pennsylvania State Police. “Because the opioid crisis has no borders, impacting rural and metropolitan communities, the collective resources of law enforcement are necessary to ensure the persons responsible for distributing these toxic drugs are brought to justice.”

Senior Deputy Attorney General Marnie Sheehan-Balchon will prosecute the cases with the assistance of Clarion DA Aaron.

Since January, the Attorney General’s Office has filed or prosecuted drug delivery resulting in death charges in six cases. Further use of this statute, which has been Pennsylvania law since 2011, is anticipated.

Attorney General Shapiro praised the law enforcement cooperation in this case.

“Two more drug dealers are off our streets thanks to the collaboration of our Office, Clarion District Attorney Aaron, and the Pennsylvania State Police. We’re united in seeking justice, getting this poison off our streets, and working together to make every Pennsylvania community safer,” stated Shapiro.

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