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Heroin, cash seized; Youngwood man arrested

Renatta Signorini
| Wednesday, Aug. 23, 2017, 11:25 a.m.
Cash and drugs were seized by Pennsylvania State Police and the Westmoreland County Sheriff department from a car and Youngwood home on Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017 after an East Huntingdon traffic stop.
Cash and drugs were seized by Pennsylvania State Police and the Westmoreland County Sheriff department from a car and Youngwood home on Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017 after an East Huntingdon traffic stop.
Drugs were seized by Pennsylvania State Police and the Westmoreland County Sheriff department from a car and Youngwood home on Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017 after an East Huntingdon traffic stop.
Drugs were seized by Pennsylvania State Police and the Westmoreland County Sheriff department from a car and Youngwood home on Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017 after an East Huntingdon traffic stop.
Michael Jarit Albright
Michael Jarit Albright

Two children were in the backseat of a vehicle allegedly headed to a drug deal Tuesday night that was foiled by local authorities, according to court papers.

Michael Jarit Albright, 29, of Youngwood told police he was going to deliver heroin when investigators stopped the car he was riding in at 5:30 p.m. off the Yukon exit of Interstate 70 in South Huntingdon.

“The drug epidemic is very bad in our county and ... we've formed a partnership with state police to try to eradicate this problem,” said Westmoreland County Sheriff Jon Held.

State police and sheriff's deputies learned Tuesday about a heroin deal involving Albright from a confidential informant, according to a criminal complaint. Investigators saw Albright leave his home in a car driven by a female and head west on I-70, where they stopped it.

Police found two boys, ages 6 and 8, in the backseat. Their mother, who has not been charged, told investigators that Albright was headed to sell heroin, according to the affidavit. However, when he saw police officers driving behind them, he pulled the heroin bundles from his pocket and asked the driver to hide them.

“(The driver) stated she then inserted the heroin packets into her vaginal area,” police said, then “retrieved” them after the stop and handed them over to investigators.

Leading up to the traffic stop, the car was driving erratically in the area of Huntingdon and Waltz Mill roads, police said.

The driver told police that she and Albright routinely distribute heroin in the Youngwood and New Stanton areas.

Police seized from the car and the Youngwood home about 85 stamp bags of heroin, eight prescription pills and about $3,600. Albright told police that most of the cash was owed to his supplier.

Albright was arraigned Wednesday on charges of possession with intent to deliver, drug possession, tampering with evidence and two counts each of conspiracy and child endangerment. He was lodged in the Westmoreland County Prison on $150,000 bond.

A Sept. 5 preliminary hearing is set.

Renatta Signorini is a Tribune-Review staff writer.

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