2 to stand trial for alleged roles in Donora woman's fatal overdose
Two Mid-Mon Valley residents will face trial for allegedly lying to police and medical personnel about 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, both waived their rights to a preliminary hearing Friday before Magisterial District Judge Joseph Dalfonso in Monessen.
The charges followed an investigation by Monessen police into the Feb. 6 death of Ashley Vince, 27. An autopsy 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 Walker had allegedly refused to follow directions given over the phone to render aid to Vince and that he had instead been heard flushing the toilet multiple times.
Lt. Brian Vitale said when police arrived around 6 a.m., 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.
Police executed a search warrant of Walker's residence and allegedly found several items associated with drug use, including two pipes used for smoking crack cocaine and a marijuana pipe.
On Friday, Beresh was released on her own recognizance while Walker had his bond lowered from $10,000 cash to $10,000 unsecured as an agreement among all parties, according to court documents.
Walker was released from Westmoreland County Prison, where he had been since his June 17 arrest.
Both Walker and Beresh face charges of hindering apprehension – conceals or destroys evidence, tampering with physical evidence, false reports and possession of drug paraphernalia in the Westmoreland County Court of Common Pleas.
Walker had another preliminary hearing continued until Aug. 15 for charges of aggravated assault, simple assault and reckless endangerment stemming from a separate incident last month.
Police said Walker allegedly got into an altercation with Mark Daube, 50, of 2304 Walsh St., Monongahela, and stabbed him in the leg while outside a Forest Avenue residence.