ROCKLAND — A Bangor woman was sentenced Sept. 28 for furnishing methadone to a Rockland man who later died from an overdose.

Audria Ariza, 34, was sentenced in Knox County Superior Court by Justice Bruce Mallonee to four years in jail with all but nine months suspended. She was also placed on probation for two years and ordered to pay a $400 fine.

On Sept. 15, a Knox Country jury found Ariza guilty of Class C furnishing drugs. The jury acquitted her of more serious charges related to the case that could have led to a sentence of up to 30 years in prison.

The charge stems from the May 13, 2020, death of 38-year-old Raymond F. Merrifield in Rockland. Ariza provided Merrifield with her prescribed methadone prior to his death.

Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Baroody asked the judge to sentence Ariza to five years with all but one year suspended. Sentences of nine months or less are served in county jails while lengthier sentences are served in Maine Department of Corrections facilities.

Baroody said the sentence was warranted, based on the aggravating factors in the case such that she diverted her methadone, her actions contributed to Merrifield’s death and the impact on Merrifield’s family members.

His mother Gretchen Barratt said the family’s life was turned upside down since the death of her son. She said they miss him every day of the past 16 months. She talked about how intelligent and well read her son was.

She praised Rockland Police Sgt. Detective Alex Gaylor for his investigation and the kindness he showed to her grandson.

Ariza was represented by attorney Jeff Silverstein of Bangor.