2 men seen with doctor before her overdose death arrested on drug charges
MANHATTAN (WPIX) – Two men who were seen with a Long Island doctor the night she died of a drug overdose, her lifeless body lying in the vestibule of a Manhattan apartment building, have been arrested on federal drug charges, NYPD officials said.
Marc Johnson, 52, and James Holder, 60, are accused of distributing cocaine and are expected to be arraigned in federal court Wednesday, NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said. They are alleged to have given Dr. Kiersten Cerveny her fatal hit.
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Johnson is a former HBO producer who partied with Cerveny during what would become her final hours. Holder is a reputed drug dealer whose last arrest was in 1993, Boyce said.
It was about 8:30 a.m. Oct. 4 when officers found Cerveny's body sprawled by the front door of a fifth-floor walk-up on West 16th Street in Chelsea, police said. She has bruises around her neck.
That night, Holder allegedly distributed the cocaine that led to the doctor's death. Boyce said Johnson "facilitated and abetted the crime." All three of them took a car from the bar back to the apartment building where Cerveny was found dead, a police source told PIX11 News.
See photos of the Long Island doctor
Police said surveillance video showed the men carrying Cerveny's body down the stairs to the building's lobby hours later.
The 38-year-old's death was ruled accidental by the city's Medical Examiner. She died of acute cocaine and alcohol intoxication, the ME said.
"We tend to go after drug dealers for selling illegal drugs. We may need to start taking a very close look at if we can make the link, if the drugs they sold, contributed to the death of an individual," NYPD Commissioner William Bratton said.
"Even though that individual may have been voluntarily ingesting that drug, we may want to take a close look at examining the penalties for their involvement."
Cerveny was survived by her husband and three children, ages 1 to 7 at the time of her death.
Her wedding in 2009 to Dr. Andrew Cerveny Jr. was featured in the New York Times. She received her medical degree from Tulane University after graduating magna cum laude from Duke University and was the chief of dermatology at the Brooklyn Hospital Center for the past seven years. Her husband has a private dermatology practice in Massapequa.