Press Release


Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced today that Justin Lum, of Great Neck, has been sentenced to up to 6 years in prison after pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide and drug possession in separate incidents resulting in the deaths of his girlfriend and a male acquaintance. Both victims – who had previously overdosed on drugs supplied by the defendant – died after he re-supplied them with heroin.

District Attorney Katz said, “The defendant in this case is going to prison after pleading guilty in the overdose deaths of two people he supplied with heroin. One of those deadly doses of heroin was laced with Fentanyl. The defendant provided drugs to these two victims despite knowing both had nearly died before of drug overdoses. This is the first time in the borough of Queens an admitted drug dealer has been held criminally responsible for the deaths of people who died after taking the poison he supplied to them.”

Lum, of Forest Row in Great Neck, Long Island, pleaded guilty on November 2, 2020, to two counts of criminally negligent homicide and one count of criminal sale of a controlled substance in the third degree before Queens Supreme Court Justice Kenneth Holder. The defendant was sentenced this morning by Justice Holder to an indeterminate term of 3 to 6 years in prison.

According to Court records, on April 27, 2017, Lum provided heroin to his girlfriend, Patricia Collado, while the two of them watched a movie at a College Point theater. After leaving the theater, they again used heroin Lum supplied inside a parked car. The 28-year-old Brooklyn resident suddenly stopped speaking and passed out. The defendant sought help and pulled Ms. Collado from the car at 56th Avenue and Main Street, where first responders administered Naloxone to the woman and then took her to a nearby hospital.

Continuing, said the District Attorney, the defendant stayed with the victim at the hospital until she was discharged shortly after 11 p.m., and the couple went to Lum’s grandfather’s house in Flushing. There, the two again snorted heroin supplied by the defendant and this time Ms. Collado abruptly went into cardiac arrest. The defendant did not call for medical attention and attempted to provide the victim with medical care. For an hour, while Ms. Collado needed medical aid, Lum continued to use drugs and then fell asleep.

Shortly after 8 a.m. the next morning, Lum woke to find the woman beside him unconscious. Only then did he call 911 and administer CPR per the instructions of the medical dispatcher on the phone. Ms. Collado was dead when emergency medical technicians arrived. An autopsy revealed she died from acute intoxication due to the combined effects of fentanyl, heroin and cocaine.

Additionally, said DA Katz, in March 2018, Lum sold heroin to Bayside resident Calvin Brown. The victim was inside Lum’s residence on March 1, 2018, when he ingested the drugs the defendant gave him and immediately had a medical emergency. The defendant called 911 and gave the 24-year-old Brown CPR until first responders arrived. Mr. Brown was taken to an area hospital for treatment and survived the overdose.

Mr. Brown was discharged from the hospital on March 6, 2018, and three days later, on March 9, 2018, the victim returned to the defendant’s home and bought more heroin from  Lum. The following day, Mr. Brown’s mother found him dead in their Queens home. An autopsy performed on the deceased determined the cause of death was acute intoxication from the combined effects of heroin, alprazolam (Xanax), diazepam and phenobarbital.

District Attorney Katz would like to thank Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas for her office’s assistance in the long-term investigation into this case.

Senior Assistant District Attorney Kirk A. Sendlein, of the District Attorney’s Homicide Bureau, prosecuted the case, with the assistance of Assistant District Attorney Efrat Blassberger, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorneys Peter McCormack III, Senior Deputy Bureau Chief, and John Kosinski, Deputy Bureau Chief, and the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney for Major Crimes Daniel Saunders.

**Criminal complaints and indictments are accusations. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Posted in