78-year-old sex offender arrested on drug charges in Westmoreland
Dominick Spickle Jr. would spend hours in his white Honda Civic to move methamphetamine from Sacramento, Calif., to Westmoreland County, according to police.
The 2,500-mile, one-way trip gave the 78-year-old Californian a chance to see the country and allegedly bring thousands of dollars worth of the drug to Southwestern Pennsylvania.
Now, the registered sex offender is behind bars on multiple drug delivery charges because the operation unraveled Thursday evening.
State police arrested Spickle, of Velma Way, for allegedly selling a trooper more than 4 ounces of methamphetamine for $11,900 in three controlled buys during the past week. Spickle is accused of selling “ice,” a pure form of the drug that can be injected, smoked or snorted, according to affidavits.
Spickle unknowingly led police to the Harrison City home of Kevin W. Nicol, 57, his alleged co-conspirator. On Thursday, police arrested Nicol there and confiscated drugs, money, a scale, 33 switchblade knives and about 130 guns.
Penn Township police Chief John Otto, who commended investigators, held a drug awareness seminar Thursday evening at the Penn-Trafford High School auditorium, not far from Nicol's 100 Johntown Court home.
“That amount of narcotics, that amount of guns, that amount of paraphernalia is troubling to me even if it was to occur in the most rural part of the township,” Otto said on Friday. “That should show people that it's here.”
“This was absolutely an astounding amount of guns,” he said.
Otto referred questions about the investigation to state police, who did not return telephone messages left on Friday.
According to affidavits, a confidential informant tipped off authorities that Spickle was selling drugs transported from Sacramento. Spickle allegedly sold a trooper methamphetamine on three occasions:
• 1⁄4 ounce for $700, in the Steak 'n Shake parking lot, Hempfield, on Sept. 20.
• 1 ounce for $2,800, in the Giant Eagle parking lot, North Huntingdon, on Sept. 21.
• 3 ounces for $8,400, again in the Giant Eagle parking lot, on Thursday.
In the last two alleged buys, undercover troopers followed Spickle to Nicol's home. Police said Spickle went inside and returned to his car before meeting troopers to exchange the drugs.
After Spickle was arrested on Thursday, Nicol gave police permission to search his home, and they confiscated the drugs and weapons, according to an affidavit.
Spickle is charged in three separate cases with six counts of possession with intent to deliver, three counts of drug possession and two counts of conspiracy. He is in the Westmoreland County Prison on three separate $25,000 bails.
Preliminary hearings are scheduled before North Huntingdon District Judge Douglas Weimer Jr. on Wednesday and before Hempfield District Judge Mark Mansour on Oct. 12.
Spickle is registered as a sex offender in California under Megan's Law. Information provided online by the California state police shows that he was charged in 1968 for “lewd or lascivious” acts with a child younger than 14.
Nicol is charged in two separate cases with conspiracy, two counts of possession with intent to deliver and three counts of drug possession. He is in the county prison on $500,000 and $15,000 bails.
Preliminary hearings are scheduled before Penn Township District Judge Helen Kistler on Tuesday and on Oct. 8 before Weimer.
Renatta Signorini is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-837-5374 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Corbett, Wolf bring gubernatorial campaign to Greensburg
- Fay-West food banks feeling hunger pains
- Flight 93 memorial fire hints at struggle to safeguard historic artifacts
- The real Captain Phillips brings story of piracy to St. Vincent College
- DNA evidence in alleged June 2013 rape leads to Latrobe man’s arrest
- DEP orders cleanup of former Jeannette Glass property to resume
- Unity rally aims to counter negativity of KKK message in ’97
- Trick-or-treat in Mt. Pleasant set for Sunday
- Hempfield killer Stahl ordered to pay for slain wife’s funeral
- Attorney: Indiana County suspect not fit for trial in fatal Derry shooting