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A Genesee County grand jury has indicted a Batavia man on charges that he failed to help his wife, who was overdosing on drugs.
Makeen K. Ithna-Asheri, 61, is charged with second-degree manslaughter, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child and misdemeanor criminal possession of a controlled substance.
The manslaughter charge accuses Ithna-Asheri of “recklessly” causing the death of his wife, Anda J. Ithna-Asheri, 38, on Dec. 30.
Police at the time said the death happened the night of Dec. 30 at the couple’s apartment at Northside Meadows on Bank Street and that Ithna-Asheri failed to help her or call for help. Police also said he prevented his children from calling by taking their phone away.
The couple both overdosed that night, police said, with Ithna-Asheri recovering before police arrived.
His wife had been dead for some time before police and medics arrived. Attempts were made to revive her but failed.
The manslaughter charge is a class C felony, punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
Ithna-Asheri is on lifetime parole because of a 1977 murder conviction in Suffolk County when he was 17 years old.
He was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison, according to state Department of Corrections.
State records don’t say when he was released but he was returned to prison after he was paroled for several violations, including one in 2005 after an endangering the welfare charge and again in 2016.
He was released in June 2017 and has had several minor arrests since.