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6 Arrested Following Drug Bust In Somerset Co.


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Police: 6 arrested following drug bust in Somerset Co.

by Ryan Graffius

SOMCO drug roundup (Somerset Co. DOC)

SOMERSET COUNTY, Pa. (WJAC) — Police arrested six people in Somerset County on Tuesday following a traffic stop and subsequent drug bust at a home along David Lane in Somerset Township, according to a police criminal complaint.

Police say on Tuesday, around 8:20 p.m., officers observed a truck leaving a residence associated with recent drug activity that is located along the 100 block of David Lane in Somerset Township.

Officers conducted a traffic stop of the vehicle and found the driver, identified as 39-year-old Erin Hess, of Mount Pleasant, to be exhibiting signs of impairment.

Police say a series of field sobriety tests were given and that Hess was arrested after officers found various drug paraphernalia in her possession.

Police also arrested the vehicle's two passengers, identified as Eric Converso, 41, of Wyano and Thomas Granny, 40, of West Newton, according to the complaint.

Officers say Converso was found to be in possession of a digital scale and a bag of suspected crystal methamphetamine and Granny was found in possession of "multiple bundles" of suspected heroin and drug paraphernalia.

Police add that Granny agreed to be interviewed and told officers that the three of them had gone to the residence along David Lane in order to obtain drugs.

Granny told police that Hess traded two bricks of heroin to a woman named "Courtney" in exchange for "one half-ounce of crystal meth and $100."

He also informed police that "Courtney" had a metal safety box at the home that contained a "large, gallon-sized freezer bag that was approximately a quarter of the way full with crystal meth," the complaint says.

When officers interviewed Hess, police say she gave them consent to search her phone, which detailed a text conversation between her and "Courtney."

Hess identified "Courtney" as 20-year-old Courtney Helmick of Somerset, and police say records showed that she is the resident of the home along David Lane, the complaint adds.

According to police, a search warrant was granted for Helmick's residence, where police found her and two others inside the living area with drugs and other paraphernalia in plain view.

The two other individuals were identified as Valeria Svonavec, 26, of Rockwood and Michael Knisely, 29, of Boswell, according to police.

Police say large amounts of methamphetamine and heroin were found in Helmick's residence, along with items used for packaging and distributing illegal narcotics.

Police add that heroin baggies with the word "baseball" stamped on them were also found and that those baggies matched the ones recovered during the traffic stop.

All six individuals face similar charges, including manufacturing/delivering/possession of a controlled substance with intent to manufacture/deliver, possession of a controlled substance and use/possession of drug paraphernalia, according to court documents, with Hess facing an additional charge of driving under the influence.

The six individuals involved were transported to Somerset County Prison in lieu of $100,000 bail each, court documents also show, and they all have preliminary hearings scheduled for April 7.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     https://wjactv.com/news/local/police-6-arrested-following-drug-bust-in-somerset-co

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