Traffic Stop In Belington Ends Up With Two Arrested On Felony Drug Charges
A routine traffic stop of a Jeep Cherokee bearing Maryland license
plates was conducted by West Virginia State Police on Brown Avenue in
Belington at about 7:42 p.m. on Saturday, July 23. WVSP Sgt. P.B. Cork
had initiated the traffic stop which led to felony charges of posession
with intent to deliver a controled/conterfeit substance against two
subjects, Joseph Richard Muster and Alexis Marie Mcdonald.
to the criminal complaint filed in Barbour County Magistrate Court Sgt.
Cork spoke to the driver of the vehicle who identified himself as Travis
Michael Goldsmith, but was later determined to be the defendant,
The complaint continues that when Muster was asked to exit
the vehicle he stated that he had "sticks" in his pocket that were
later determined to be an open bag of what appeared to be unused
needles. Also found on Muster where two folded stacks of cash which he
stated was $1800 to purchase a car. Muster had a rental agreement for
the vehicle he was driving but the name on the contract was different.
Sgt. Cork was assisted in the traffic stop by Sgt. B.A. Miller and
Deputy D.J. Carter of the Barbour County Sheriff's Department.
was present with a female passenger who reportedly gave a fictitious
name when asked her identity. The two gave verbal consent to search the
vehicle, where deputy Carter located a digital scale in the vehicle and
also located drugs in the female passengers purse. The complaint said
that the drugs included small individually packaged brown crystalline
substance which was presumed by field testing to be Amphetamine, a
schedule two controlled substance. The female was also determined to be
in the possession of an unlabeled prescription bottle containing in
excess of 148 tablets.
It was noted that the female had in her possession $3571 in cash.
While assisting on the traffic stop officers detained Alexis Mcdonald,
of Elkins, and placed in the back of a police cruiser. While the
officers where photographing and testing evidence, Deputy Carter saw
Mcdonald drive off with the Sheriffs' Department cruiser.
to a criminal complaint filed by Deputy Carter, Mcdonald managed to
slip her handcuffs to the front of her body in which she then climbed
into the front seat of the cruiser. Deputy Carter and Sgt. Miller
perused the vehicle until it stopped in a parking lot near Ryans Recker
Service. Mcdonald then fled on foot and was later apprehended by the
The officers then took Mcdonald to Broaddus Hospital
where she had blood drawn to determine the identity of the substances in
her blood. According to the criminal complaint, Mcdonald tested
positive for THC, Benzodiazepine, Opiates, Methamphetamine and
Amphetamine. Deputy Carter then charged Mcdonald with the felony charge,
Fleeing DUI, and was taken to Tygart Valley Regional Jail.
Both Mcdonald and Muster remain in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail.
Search Leads To Meth Lab Arrest
A Belington man has been charged with a felony for attempting to operate a clandestine drug lab. Jessie Ray Carper, 30, of Belington, has been charged with operating or attempting to operate a clandestine drug laboratory.
During a consensual search of the property on Joseph Chapel Road in Belington on Monday, July 25, Trooper Austin H. Clark of the West Virginia State Police, Philippi Detachment discovered components used in manufacturing methamphetamine in a concealed garbage bag. Carper stated that the items in the bag were used to make methamphetamine. These items included lye, plastic bottles, plastic hose, glass jars, a hair dryer, a blender for crushing pills, camp fuel, a funnel, and a cold pack, according to the criminal complaint filed at the Barbour County Magistrate’s Office in Philippi.
Jessie Ray Carper is being held on in Tygart Valley Regional Jail with bail set a $5,000 cash/surety.
Accident Occurs At Red Light On Rt. 119
A vehicle accident was reported at the intersection of Maple Avenue and U.S. Rt. 119 in Philippi on Wednesday, July 20, at approximately 4 p.m.
First responders to the accident scene, including Philippi Police Department Patrolman C.E. Keller reported two vehicles were involved in the accident.
Keller noted that a 1978 Ford F-150 pickup, owned and driven by Verle L. Brown of Philippi, and transporting a boat, was traveling on Rt. 119 at the red light and was struck by a 2009 Buick Enclave operated by Vail Kenneth Lee of Freeman, MO.
Keller said that Brown had a green light at the intersection and that Lee failed to yield right of way and turned right on a red light off of Maple Avenue onto Rt. 119 and the vehicles collided.
It was noted that five occupants were in the Lee vehicle and two in the Brown pickup but no injuries occurred.
Units from the Barbour County Emergency Squad and Philippi Volunteer Fire Department were also at the scene.
Philippi Police Department Receives Funds For K9 Unit
Earlier this month, the Philippi Police Department was granted the okay to begin the process of establishing a K9 Unit to combat the growing drug problem in our community and state. Senior Patrolman Dustin Cale has begun his training to obtain and serve with the special drug dog the city will received.
Although expenses to start the K9 program have been offset by a grant the police department received, the overall expense for the program has now been estimated at around $15,000. The initial estimated cost for the dog and equipment was around $10,000. The grant received will help with expenses, but the grant does not provide healthcare needs or vehicle equipment as originally thought.
However, the department has received several donations from organizations and individuals throughout the county. Two businesses and mulitple individuals have donated a total of $2,700. On Tuesday, June 19, Susie Cvechko, on behalf of the Barbour County Community Colaborative, and Danah Gould, on behalf of Davis Health System and Broaddus Hospital, each presented Chief Jeff Walters a check for $500 to put toward the Philippi Police Deparment's K9 Unit. Furthermore, Audobon Animal Clinic has pledged free healthcare for the life of the dog for the Philippi Police Department's K9 Unit, according to Chief Walters at last Tuesday's City Council meeting.
"We feel this is a positive move," said Cvechko. "We're happy to support the program."
The police department is encouraged by the positive response it has received so far from the community in the program's initial stages.
"Law enforcement has taken a bad rap in the last year, and so living, working, and serving in a community that supports us means a lot," said Chief Walters.
Anyone interested in donating to the Philippi Police Department may call 304-457-3700 or stop by the Police Department office in Philippi.
Barbour County Awarded Emergency Food And Shelter Funds
Barbour County, WV, has been awarded $7,864 in Federal funds under Phase 33 of the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program to supplement and expand emergency food and shelter programs. The distribution of these funds, made available through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency, will be determined locally by the Barbour County Food and Shelter Board.
Under the terms of the grant from the National Board, local agencies chosen to receive funds must: 1) be private voluntary non-profits or units of government; 2) be eligible to receive Federal funds, which includes having valid FEIN and DUNS numbers; 3) have an accounting system; 4) practice nondiscrimination; 5) have demonstrated the capability to deliver emergency food and/or shelter programs; and 6) if they are a private voluntary organization, have a voluntary board.
Program funds may be used to provide: food, in the form of served meals or groceries; lodging in a mass shelter or hotel; one month's rent or mortgage payment; one month's utility bill; or equipment necessary to feed or shelter people, up to a $300 limit per item.
Qualifying organizations that provide either food or shelter to Barbour County residents and are interested in applying for Emergency Food and Shelter Program funds may request an application by email at BCEFSB@gmail.com or contact Karen Weaver, president of the Barbour County Food and Shelter Board, by phone at 304-457-3700. Applications must be received by close of business Friday, July 29, 2016.
For more information about the Emergency Food and Shelter National Board Program, visit www.efsp.unitedway.org.
Philip Barbour High School Announces Calendar Of Events
August 8 – Registration from 9 a.m. to 12 noon and 1 to 3 p.m. (Bring proof of residency and legal guardian).
August 8 - Freshman Frolic-locker assignments, 9 a.m. to 12 noon and 1 to 3 p.m. New Tech Open House – 4 to 6 p.m., dinner – 6 to 7 p.m. Students – 7 to 9 p.m., student council games and activities. Parents – 7 to 9 p.m., informational meeting.
August 15 – First day back to school for students.
August 26 - First home football game on the new field against Grafton. Kickoff starts at 7:30 p.m.
In the July 20 edition of The Barbour Democrat, an article
stated that commercial and rental properties in the Sunshine and Dean buildings
along Main Street
in Philippi would be available to lease to
interested parties through Woodlands Development Group, which is renovating the
buildings, and the Barbour County Development Authority.
To clarify this note, the office of William Johnson will
remain open in the Dean
Building, which was made
unclear in the article.
Philippi Council Meets In Regular Session
by ALLISON PUGH
Philippi City Council met in regular session last Tuesday, July 19. At the meeting, the council motioned to make a budget revision to the 2016-2017 general fund budget. The revision carries over the cash amount from June 30 into a contingency fund in the 2016-2017 budget. The $91,496 balance carried forward will cover expenses incurred by the city in June which have not yet been billed.
In other news, Susie Cvechko addressed the council members on behalf of the Barbour County Community Colaborative. The organization is a group that meets bimonthly and represents the community efforts of Broaddus Hospital, Belington Clinic, Alderson Broaddus University, Mace's Pharmacy, and the Barbour County Development Authority. Cvechko was joined for the presentation by Danah Gould, COO of Broaddus Hospital and previous compliance officer serving Broaddus Hospital prior to Cvechko's retirement. Gould is a Barbour County native.
The organizations involved have come together to look at positive things that can be done in the community from a healthy initiative standpoint. One such project will soon be in place in Philippi.
Bike racks have been placed at BCBank and Mace's Pharmacy in Philippi. Bikes will be supplied in the racks by Thad Kelley and may be used on a first come-first serve basis throughout Philippi.
"It's for people to get on the bike and take a ride, go from one end of town to the other," says Cvechko. "There are people who may enjoy a bike ride, but maybe don't have a bike or need an extra bike."
The group also donated $500 to the Philippi Police Department to put toward the K9 Unit, and also asked the city to place additional signage for trails. More information on the bike system will be announced as the bikes are put in place.