2-year sentence for man convicted in death of Austin Padaric
The man convicted of manslaughter in connection with the overdose death of a Wellesley teenager will spent two years in jail.
Quin Kurtz was handed that sentence Thursday morning in a Kitchener courtroom.
In April 2013, Austin Padaric died of a drug overdose after attending a party at Kurtz’s apartment.
Kurtz and Padaric, along with others in attendance, were seen snorting crushed pills at the party. At least two of the pills were morphine.
Court documents show that Padaric eventually fell asleep. His friends noticed him making strange noises, then “hot to the touch” – but, at Kurtz’s insistence, did not call 911.
It wasn’t until well into the following day, after Kurtz had left to attend the Elmira Maple Syrup Festival, that 911 was called.
Padaric was taken to hospital, where he died six days later.
Given a chance in court to explain the impact her son’s death has had on her, Christine Padaric addressed Kurtz directly.
She said that Kurtz had “permanently etched black marks on our family character,” and urged him to speak publicly about the dangers of drug abuse.
“Drugs are here to stay, so we need to arm our children with as much information as possible,” Padaric said in an interview.
“I don’t want another parent to have to go through what my husband and I have gone through.”
Padaric has started doing advocacy work herself to spread the anti-drug message.
Kurtz was given his own opportunity to address the court. The 23-year-old declined to do so.
Outside the courthouse, his lawyer said that Kurtz had not run afoul of the law while out of custody on bail during his legal process, and would not get into trouble while in jail either.
“He’s the type of person that will do his best to make the best use of that time,” he said.
Kayla Jones, a friend of Kurtz’s, read a statement from his mother calling Kurtz a “good kid with a big heart,” and describing the situation as “a mother’s worst nightmare.”
“It is tragic, seeing the lives of two boys destroyed by their individual choice to experiment with drugs,” the statement reads.
“We will continue to pray for the other families, and hope that they may find peace and a healthy way to move on.”