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Man Accused of Bringing Seven-Year-Old to Heroin Deal in Shippenville
According to court documents, drug charges were filed against 30-year-old William Aaron Fourness Jr., of Ridgway, in Magisterial District Judge Timothy P. Schill’s office on Tuesday, February 19.
The arrest stems from an investigation into the distribution of heroin/fentanyl in the Clarion County area.
According to a criminal complaint, over the course of the weeks prior to February 15, 2019, a member of Troop C Vice Unit assisted Clarion County Chief Detective William Peck IV in the investigation. Chief Peck assumed the identity of a known individual and utilized this known individual’s cell phone to communicate with Fourness regarding the delivery of heroin, a Schedule 1 controlled substance.
On February 15, several messages were communicated with Fourness including setting up the delivery of five brick (250 stamp bags) of heroin in exchange for $1,400.00 at the Country Fair Convenience store at the intersection of State Route 66 and State Route 322, in Paint Township, Clarion County, the complaint states.
Surveillance conducted prior to this date revealed that Fourness operated a dark blue 2006 Nissan Pathfinder.
On February 15, around 7:30 p.m., surveillance was set up on the Country Fair Convenience store. At that time, several marked patrol units from PSP Clarion were briefed on what was to transpire and were staged nearby to assist. Around 9:20 p.m., Fourness’ vehicle was observed pulling in the parking lot at the Country Fair.
A male, positively identified at Fourness, exited the driver’s door of the vehicle, a known female exited the front passenger door, and a seven-year-old male exited from the back of the vehicle. All occupants entered the store and were there for a period of time before exiting and getting back in the Nissan Pathfinder.
That information was communicated to the marked PSP patrol units who moved in and conducted a felony arrest of the subjects inside the vehicle. A probable cause search of the vehicle was made, and a ziplock bag containing 25 individual bundles of waxen stamp bags of suspected heroin was discovered in between the driver’s seat and the center console of the vehicle.
According to the complaint, in the course of facilitating the delivery of controlled substances, Fourness placed the seven-year-old male in potential imminent danger.
It was learned that Fourness conspired in the delivery of the controlled substance with the known woman mentioned above. This is confirmed by the fact that the seven-year-old child told officers that they were there to meet the known individual, the complaint states.
Fourness was arraigned in front of Judge Schill at 10:30 a.m. on February 19 on the following charges:
- Manufacture, Delivery, or Possession With Intent to Manufacture or Deliver, Felony (two counts)
- Criminal Use Of Communication Facility, Felony 3
- Endangering Welfare of Children – Parent/Guardian/Other Commits Offense, Misdemeanor 1
Unable to post $60,000.00, he was lodged in the Clarion County Jail.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 11:30 a.m.on March 5 with Judge Schill presiding.
As of 8:00 a.m. on Thursday, February 21, no charges were filed against the known woman.
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