Philadelphia Man Faces Drug Charges After Allegedly Trying to Sell Large Amount of Heroin to Police

A Philadelphia man is facing drug charges after he allegedly tried to sell an undercover officer a large amount of heroin.

Nasir M. Lawrence, 23, allegedly tried to sell fifty bags of heroin to a Lycoming County Narcotics Unit officer. The alleged attempted drug deal took place at Third Place and Park Avenue on Thursday, June 9th. You can read Lawrence’s court report below:

Court ReportCOURT REPORT- Nasir M. Lawrence, 23, of Philadelphia, faces 3 felony charges and 3 misdemeanor charges.  The charges listed are….
35 § 780-113 §§ A30 F Manufacture, Delivery, or Possession With Intent to Manufacture or Deliver
35 § 780-113 §§ A30 F Manufacture, Delivery, or Possession With Intent to Manufacture or Deliver
18 § 7512 §§ A F3 Criminal Use Of Communication Facility

35 § 780-113 §§ A16 M Int Poss Contr Subst By Per Not Reg
35 § 780-113 §§ A32 M Use/Poss Of Drug Paraph
35 § 780-113 §§ A16 M Int Poss Contr Subst By Per Not Reg 06/09/2016

Magisterial District Judge Christian David Frey on June 9th, 2016 presided over the preliminary arraignment for Lawrence. Lawrence was arraigned at the Magisterial District Court 29-1-01. Lawrence was assigned bail in the amount of $250,000. Lawrence was unable to meet bail and was remanded to the Lycoming County Prison pending the next hearing. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for June 14th, 2016, at 2:00 p.m., also in front of Magisterial District Judge Christian David Frey.

Keifer J. Bathgate of the Lycoming County Detectives is listed as the arresting officer for Lawrence. The charges relate to an alleged incident that happened on June 9th, 2016.

Please remember all individuals are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.
All of the information contained is based on Lycoming County PA Court Records.
View the full court record here.

Nasir M Lawrence 6 9 16

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Williamsport Man Who Killed Girlfriend, Hid Body in Closet Hit With 30-60 Year Prison Sentence

Hasan Gooden-Reid
Hasan Gooden-Reid

A Williamsport man received a lengthy prison sentence after he killed his 22-year-old girlfriend and then hid the body in a closet for several weeks in July of 2015.

President Judge Nancy Butts sentenced 35-year-old Hasan Gooden-Reid to 30-60 years in state prison in Lycoming County Court on Thursday, June 9th. He had pleaded guilty to murder prior to his sentencing.

Kristina Pope was 22 when she was killed by Gooden-Reid on July 7th. Gooden-Reid entered his apartment located on Sherman Street’s 1600 block where Pope was sitting in the living room. According to Gooden-Reid, water was running on the floor due to a broken toilet and his cell phone had been smashed. According to what Gooden-Reid said to the court, he was angry with Pope and she tried to exit the apartment but he would not let her leave. Pope grabbed a pair of scissors and the two struggled. Gooden-Reid got the scissors from Pope and she began choking him while they were both on the couch. According to Gooden-Reid, he stabbed her between four and five times on the left side below her armpit.

After Gooden-Reid stabbed Pope, he moved the body to the bed in his bedroom and covered it up. He told the court he was afraid to call the police the night he killed Pope. At some point, he moved the body to a closet. The body was in the apartment for around three weeks when the Lycoming County Housing Authority instructed him to leave so the apartment could be fumigated as people were complaining about the smell as well as insects. According to Agent Raymond O. Kontz III in an affidavit, Gooden-Reid said the smell was because of clothes that were moldy and wet as well as a toilet that had been broken for three weeks. Gooden-Reid left the apartment and came back later that night. At that time, he moved the body to the trash can outside. According to Gooden-Reid, he put the body on the grass beside the trash can. He told the court that because of the smell, he “didn’t know what else to do”. On July 28th, a member of the Lycoming County Housing Authority found what was a jaw bone within a trashcan and police were called to the scene. Gooden-Reid has been in prison without bail since July 28th.

Gooden-Reid was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. According to what he told the court, he did not take his medication for a year prior to killing Pope. He was declared competent to stand trial in March. In court, Gooden-Reid said that “[Pope] was my girlfriend and I loved her. It broke my heart.” He said that when he killed Pope, “[He] was in a state of rage.” He also said he knew his actions were wrong and that at the time of the murder, “[He] wasn’t in [his] right state of mind”.

Gooden-Reid’s prison sentence was for the following charges: third-degree murder, abuse of a corpse, recklessly endangering another person, criminal mischief, possession of an instrument of crime, tampering with or fabricating physical evidence, and obstructing the administration of the law. District Attorney Eric Linhardt, Gooden-Reid said that because of Gooden-Reid’s mental illness, he was not capable of “a specific intent to kill” so a first-degree murder charge could not be pursued. According to Linhardt, the sentence Gooden-Reid received was the maximum required by law. Kimberly Pope-Seiberling, who is Pope’s aunt, had asked that Gooden-Reid receive the maximum sentence.

Gooden-Reid said he “want[s] to start [his] life over again.” According to Lindhardt, Gooden-Reid will be eligible for parole when he reaches 65 years of age. However, Lindhardt doesn’t believe he will be paroled at that time because of “the violent nature of the offense”. A family friend of Pope, Dianna Coules, said the following in the courtroom, “She died too young and sadly at the hands of someone she thought loved her… People deserve second chances, but not today. The community will never be safe with you in it.”


Williamsport Man Faces Weapon, Drug Charges Stemming From 2015 Shooting Death of Woman

A Williamsport man is now facing charges in connection with a fatal shooting in which a Williamsport woman was killed.

Keith K. Freeman Jr., who is currently on parole, was allegedly involved in drug activity. According to a Sun-Gazette report, Williamsport police Agent Trent Peacock said that the alleged drug activity may have had something to do with the fatal shooting of Carolyn Barr. Barr, who is Freeman Jr.’s aunt, was fatally shot outside of Freeman Jr.’s home on Brandon Avenue on October 13th, 2015. Knowledge D. Frierson, 23, is facing homicide and weapon charges in connection with that fatal shooting.

According to Peacock, Freeman was arrested and charged with carrying a firearm without a license, possession of heroin, tampering with evidence, and reckless endangering. According to what Peacock stated in court papers, Freeman allegedly “engag[ed] in the sale of narcotics out of his home which recklessly endangered his family and resulted in the shooting death of Barr”.

According to police, Freeman escorted Barr from his 421 Brandon Avenue residence at approximately 9:50 p.m. on October 13th of last year. Then, Freeman and Frierson allegedly both fired shots. A bullet allegedly hit Barr’s abdomen. She was taken to Williamsport Regional Medical Center and she passed away after about an hour. It was Barr’s 56th birthday. Freeman allegedly fired a shot that hit Frierson’s pelvis. Frierson was also taken to Williamsport Regional Medical Center and he allegedly would not answer questions by police. According to police, the gun which Frierson allegedly fired was a stolen gun. The gun was recovered by police, and it was located close to the scene.

According to Peacock, police searched Freeman’s home and allegedly discovered heroin, 13 bags in all, at the top of a bathroom cabinet. According to Peacock in an affidavit, Freeman allegedly admitted to police that he had a concealed revolver on his person and that he allegedly fired at Frierson when he started to flee the scene. After the shooting, Freeman allegedly left the home. A day later, he showed up at police headquarters in order to be questioned.

Two days after the death of Barr, Freeman showed police the steps he allegedly took when he allegedly pursued Frierson. He pointed out the area where he allegedly tossed the gun. According to Peacock in an affidavit, police looked in the bushes but did not find gun. According to Peacock, Freeman allegedly admitted to ditching the gun due to his probation.

Freeman had called Barr so she could pick up his fiancee Karina Washington from work. According to Peacock, Freeman did not want Washington to have to walk home because a man allegedly came to his door and asked for someone unknown to Freeman. Freeman believed the man could have been armed as one hand was in his pants pocket.

During questioning last month, Freeman allegedly admitted that he sold marijuana from the home. He was allegedly afraid that Frierson was going to “rob him”, according to what Peacock stated in court papers. Freeman allegedly believed Frierson was going to rob him because there were other robberies in Williamsport.

After Freeman’s arraignment in front of District Judge Allen P. Page III, he met his $12,500 bail. Freeman waived his preliminary hearing. Frierson is currently in Lycoming County Prison. At this time, Frierson is not eligible for bail. His preliminary hearing is on Friday, June 10th, in front of Page. Please remember that the accused are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

Two Vehicle Williamsport Collision Injures Two

Two people were injured when a Jeep collided with a car in Williamsport on Monday, June 6th.

35-year-old Nicole Caputo of Williamsport was driving a Jeep Liberty in the area of Mulberry Street and Washington Boulevard. Donald Karaffa of Loyalsock Township was driving a car in the same area when the two vehicles collided at approximately 10:15 a.m. After the vehicles collided, the Jeep Liberty rolled over.

According to police, Caputo and her passenger, a 2-year-old girl, had minor injuries. They were both taken to Williamsport Regional Medical Center for treatment. Karaffa is not believed to have been injured.

Stolen Handgun Allegedly Found After Williamsport Traffic Stop, Three Charged

A traffic stop in Williamsport on Friday, June 3rd, resulted in theft and drug charges for three people.

The car was pulled over when a city patrolman noticed that its brake light was out. The police officer searched the trunk and found a handgun that was allegedly stolen from an Elizabethtown store.

According to an affidavit, Patrolman Jason Dockey was headed north on Campbell Street’s 600 block in a marked patrol car. Dockey observed a purple Honda Accord which was parked in a south direction. The people in the vehicle were allegedly smoking, according to Dockey in the affidavit. Dockey drove north to Louisa Street before making a U-turn and returning to Campbell Street. The car drove off and traveled to Park Avenue. Then, Dockey noticed that the car’s brake lights were not working.

Later, Dockey located the car parked in the back of West Fourth Street’s 700 block. At that time, it looked like there was just one person in the right front passenger seat. According to Dockey in the affidavit, he left before driving by a few times. Dockey observed people standing near the car. After awhile, Dockey saw the vehicle headed east on Edwin Street. A traffic stop was conducted due to the brake lights not working at approximately 11:40 a.m. on Edwin Street’s 400 block.

According to what 24-year-old Jasmine K. Alston of Edgewood, MD, told police, the car was hers. Alston explained that she and 19-year-old Tydric L. Richardson, also of Edgewood, MD, were in the area in order to pick up 25-year-old Parrise M. Valentine, also of Edgewood, MD. Alston also allegedly told police that “roaches”, or already used marijuana cigarettes, were located in the center console area within a portable ashtray. Alston handed the ashtray to Williamsport Patrolman Eric Derr. In addition, police allegedly discovered two empty plastic bags containing marijuana. Police conducted a search of the vehicle and found an additional marijuana cigarette. A field test showed that the substance found in the vehicle tested positive for marijuana. When police searched the trunk, they found a black handgun containing serial numbers. According to police, the handgun was in a green bag that also had size 32 shorts in it. There was also women’s shoes and clothing in the trunk, according to police. Neither Alston, Richardson, or Valentine said that they owned the handgun.

When police checked the serial number on the handgun, they discovered that it had allegedly been stolen from the Trop Gun Shop in Elizabethtown. According to police, the handgun was reported to be stolen on Sunday, May 29th. The Northwest Regional Lancaster County Police filed the stolen gun report, and they were able to confirm that the handgun was stolen after police talked with a detective.

According to an affidavit, Alston, Richardson, and Valentine each face the following charges: receiving stolen property, possession of a small amount of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia. They are currently in Lycoming County Prison and their bail was set at $120,000 a piece by District Judge Christian D. Frey. Their preliminary hearings are on June 14th at 9:30 a.m. Please remember that the accused are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

According to what Richardson told Frey, he had a previous juvenile court charge that has to do with marijuana. According to what Alston told Frey, she currently has a pending charge for resisting arrest in Edgewood, Maryland. Alston also said that was previously on probation for possession of marijuana. According to what Valentine told Frey, she was previously on probation for possession of marijuana and unlawful use of a credit card. Valentine said that she had been found guilty of those two charges.


Van Crashes into Williamsport Home, One Injured

A van crashed into a Williamsport residence on Saturday, June 4th.

According to the Old Lycoming Township Police Department, a 17-year-old female was driving the van which crashed into a home located at 64 Grimesville Road at around half past 11:00 p.m. Corey and Drema Hall are the owners of the home. The foundation and front porch were both damaged in the crash.

According to a Sun-Gazette report, some pipes that carry water to the home were broken in the crash. Corey Hall told the Sun-Gazette that he swiftly turned the water off. The girl, who was injured, was taken to Williamsport Regional Medical Center via ambulance. Her injuries are not considered to be life threatening.

Williamsport Woman May Be Missing

Stephanie Embick
Stephanie Embick

A Williamsport woman has not been seen for three weeks, and her family is worried about her.

According to the Williamsport Bureau of Police, Stephanie Embick has not contacted her family in three weeks. The last time Embick was seen, she was in the area of Williamsport. If you have any information about where Embick is, you are asked to call police at (570) 433-3166 or (570) 327-7560. When you call, refer to incident number 16-04908.

Wrong Way Ramp Sign Project Starts on Route 15 June 6th, Ramp Shoulder Closures Expected

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, a wrong way ramp sign project begins on Monday, June 6th, on Route 15.

The project will affect several locations on Route 15 from the Third Street Interchange in Williamsport to the Route 49 Interchange located in Tioga County. The following work will be done: signing, pavement markings, delineators, and other construction work. There will be ramp shoulder closures in effect throughout the duration of the project. The project is scheduled to be completed by the end of July.

The project costs $180,000. The prime contractor is Morgan Rail, Inc. As always, drivers should be extra aware when driving in work zone areas.


Williamsport Couple Who Allegedly Stole Money From Grandmother Held For Court

A Williamsport couple who is facing charges stemming from an August 2014 incident in which they allegedly stole money from the husband’s grandmother is being held for court.

On Tuesday, District Judge Christian Frey decided that 33-year-old Justin M. Stugart and 31-year-old Rochelle A. Stugart should be held for court. Frey’s decision came after the victim, Lucille Buchta, and the lead investigator gave testimonies. The Stugarts face the following felony charges: theft, receiving stolen property, burglary, conspiracy, and trespassing. They are currently free on $35,000 bail a piece.

The Stugarts allegedly stole almost $40,000 from Buchta on August 24th, 2014. Buchta’s house is located by Maynard and Second streets. The Stugarts were there visiting with their six children. According to city police Agent Raymond O. Kontz III, Rochelle allegedly distracted Buchta on the front porch by talking to her while Justin allegedly took the money from a safe located in Buchta’s bedroom. Buchta did not notice that the money was missing until August 28th when she was going to get some of it in order to pay a vet bill.

According to Kontz in an affidavit, Buchta called Justin and asked him to come to her house. Justin was allegedly crying and seemed upset. He allegedly asked his grandmother for forgiveness when he allegedly admitted to her that he took the money. However, the amount of money that Justin said he took is $1,200. Please remember that the accused are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.