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Two Monessen men jailed on drug charges

| Thursday, Nov. 7, 2013, 12:11 a.m.
John R. Farmer Jr.
John R. Farmer Jr.
Darnell Howell
Darnell Howell

A Monessen man who allegedly failed to meet his state parole officer is back in jail on drug charges.

Darnell Howell, 42, of 128 Linden Ave., was charged by Monessen police Wednesday with conspiracy-possession of a controlled substance and conspiracy-use/possession of drug paraphernalia.

Howell is on parole for drug convictions, police said.

Monessen police Lt. James Smith, along with two probation officers, went to Howell's residence at 2:14 p.m. Tuesday to arrest him on a parole violation warrant, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

Howell wasn't home, but one of the parole officers had information Howell was allegedly seen earlier in the day leaving a relative's residence with another man in a gray vehicle. Smith identified the driver as John Farmer Jr., according to the complaint.

When officers went to Farmer's residence at 43 Aliquippa Ave., Farmer allegedly told police he would send Howell outside.

Fifteen minutes later, after Howell failed to come out of the house, police forced their way in. After Howell was arrested, police said crack cocaine and a crack pipe were found on a bed.

Farmer, 50, was allegedly in possession of one stamp bag of suspected heroin and a dollar bill that contained suspected cocaine.

After receiving a search warrant for Farmer's residence, Smith said police found drug paraphernalia, including a digital scale, grinder, rubber bands and empty stamp bags.

Farmer was charged with three counts each of possession of a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia, and two counts of criminal conspiracy.

Both men were arraigned Wednesday before Magisterial District Judge Joseph Dalfonso. They were both sent to the Westmoreland County Prison in lieu of $25,000 straight cash bond each.

They are both scheduled for preliminary hearings at 9:15 a.m. Nov. 15 before Dalfonso.

Stacy Wolford is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-684-2640 or at swolford@tribweb.com.

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