2 charged in connection with Donora woman's fatal OD
Monessen police on Tuesday charged two local residents with lying to police and medical personnel over the fatal overdose of a Donora woman.
Virgil J. Walker, 53, of 108 Knox Ave., front apartment, Monessen, and Angela R. Beresh, 30, of 408 Second St., Monongahela, were charged with hindering apprehension – conceals or destroys evidence, tampering with physical evidence, false reports and possession of drug paraphernalia.
The charges followed an investigation into the Feb. 6 death of Ashley Vince, 27.
Police said they were dispatched at 5:43 a.m. along with Mon Valley Emergency Medical Services to Walker's residence for a report of a female who was not breathing.
When police officers arrived, they were notified by an emergency medical dispatcher that Walker had allegedly refused to follow directions to render aid to Vince and that he had instead been flushing the toilet multiple times.
According to an affidavit of probable cause, police Lt. Brian Vitale said Vince's body was already cold to the touch and paramedic Angie Brozik advised Vitale that Vince had been deceased “for some time.” Police said Vince was found lying on the floor covered with two blankets.
Walker purportedly told police the women came to his residence around 3 a.m. and that Beresh offered to have sex with him in exchange for drugs. He also told police he was Vince's uncle, according to the affidavit.
Beresh allegedly told police that when Vince was not waking up, she wanted to call 911 for help, but Walker would not let her because “he did not want the cops to come to his house.”
An autopsy conducted by Dr. Cyril Wecht determined Vince's cause of death to be acute combined drug toxicity (cocaine, Oxycodone and Trazodone), acute pulmonary congestion, acute pulmonary edema, and acute congestion of the spleen and liver.
Police said both Beresh and Walker allegedly continued making inconsistent and false statement to investigators about the incident.
Police executed a search warrant at Walker's residence and allegedly found several items associated with drug use, including two pipes used for smoking crack cocaine and a marijuana pipe.
Walker was arrested Tuesday, arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Joseph Dalfonso in Monessen and sent to the Westmoreland County Prison in lieu of $10,000 bond.
Dalfonso also arraigned Walker on charges of aggravated assault, simple assault and reckless endangerment after police accused him of stabbing Mark Daube in the leg with a knife during a June 6 altercation. Walker was placed on $10,000 bond for that incident and remained in jail as of late Tuesday.
Beresh had not been arraigned as of Tuesday.