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MCKEES ROCKS (KDKA) — David Francis, 66, the CEO and founder of the Next Step Foundation, has a detention hearing Wednesday before a federal judge. He’s been in custody since he was arrested last Friday.
Alyssa Freeman was 28-years-old when she died of an overdose. She was a client at Next Step.
Her mother, Karen Miller, in a telephone interview Tuesday night, talked about the final time she saw her daughter.
Miller, who lives in Pottsville, said, “I was out there in Pittsburgh. I went out on a Thursday. We had four wonderful days together. I came home Sunday, Mother’s Day, and three days later, my daughter was dead.”
Lisa Washington’s Report:
Miller said she had little doubt that Francis provided her the fatal dose of Fentanyl.
She said Alyssa had been a patient at Francis’ rehab center on several occasions, beginning in 2013.
“My daughter started using again. We had a long conversation, and I was asking her about where she was getting it. She said she was getting it from Doug, who works for David Francis, and that Francis was providing it for her,” Miller said.
Francis is charged with drug distribution.
And Alyssa’s mother has strong feelings about his upcoming detention hearing.
“He should not get out of jail. He can’t do this to anybody else, having people die. It’s a parent’s worst nightmare. He took my daughter away, he knew what he was giving her, he had to know the consequences of it, and now, he should stay behind bars,” Miller said.