February 07, 2024

Slidell Woman Indicted For Murder in the Death of a Fellow Inmate

COVINGTON - Interim District Attorney J. Collin Sims reports that on February 7, 2024, a St. Tammany Parish grand jury indicted Sarah Beth Blackmon, age 39 of Slidell, for second-degree murder, introduction of contraband in a correctional facility and failure to seek assistance resulting in death. This case involves the Fentanyl-related fatal overdose of Theresa Zar while the two women were being detained in the Slidell City Jail in November of 2023.

Assistant District Attorney Ronnie Gracianette presented the case to the grand jury.

Previous Reporting

Sarah Blackmon, age 39 and of Slidell, has been charged by the Slidell Police Department in the death of 25 year-old Theresa Zar, who was found deceased last week inside of her jail cell. A preliminary investigation has determined that she likely died of a narcotics overdose. 

Blackmon, who was arrested earlier last week for unrelated charges, reportedly admitted to detectives that she smuggled narcotics into the Slidell City Jail. Despite being thoroughly searched, Blackmon also reportedly admitted that she shoved the narcotics (suspected fentanyl) deep inside her vaginal cavity, making it nearly impossible to be detected. At some point, Blackmon provided Zar the narcotics, who then subsequently died from a suspected overdose. SPD further reports that Blackmon observed Zar in distress and failed to provide and/or seek assistance, which could have saved her life.

Blackmon has been charged with Second Degree Murder, Introducing Contraband into a Penal Institution and Failure to Seek Assistance. The Louisiana Second Degree Murder law states that anyone who unlawfully distributes or dispenses a controlled dangerous substance, which is the direct cause of the death of the recipient who ingested or consumed the controlled dangerous substance, can be charged with Second Degree Murder.

An autopsy and toxicology test were performed by the St. Tammany Parish Coroner’s Office. The final results of the toxicology tests could take several weeks.

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