Woman Charged with Murder in Hermantown Heroin Overdose Death

A 22-year-old woman has been charged with murder in connection to a heroin overdose death in Hermantown in November of 2014. 

Kayla Jo Vranish was charged Wednesday with Felony 3rd Degree Murder. 

The charges stem from an incident on November 30, 2014 where Hermantown police were called to a home on Johnson Avenue for medical assistance. 

When officers arrived, they found a 62-year-old Kathy Davis dead. 

The preliminary investigation found that Davis died of an apparent drug overdose. 

An autopsy  ruled the woman’s death accidental, secondary to a heroin overdose. 

Hermantown detectives along with investigators from the Lake Superior Drug and Violent Crime Task Force identified Vranish as a suspect after determining she sold heroin to the woman. 

Bail was set for Vranish at $125,000. 

Police say there have been approximately 122 reported drug overdoses in the Duluth area over the past year.  That does not include area hospital self-admits of unreported overdoses .

Authorities across the country attribute a spike in heroin overdose deaths to Fentanyl being added to certain batches of heroin.  Fentanyl is a potent painkiller and anesthetic generally prescribed to treat extreme pain during cancer treatment or after surgery.  

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