Murrysville police arrest 1 when heroin found in car
Murrysville Police are trying to determine the intended destination of 10 bricks of heroin confiscated on Sunday afternoon from an idling car parked in a busy shopping plaza with the driver slumped over the steering wheel.
Officer Daniel Cox arrested the driver, Gregory L. Freeman, 53, of Wilkinsburg, on multiple drug charges, including possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia after the heroin, with a street value of $5,000, was detected by K-9 officer Argos.
Police were summoned to the Walnut Hollow Shopping Plaza along Route 22 after bystanders saw Freeman slumped in a late-model Dodge Charger shortly before 2 p.m.
When Cox arrived, along with Murrysville Medic One ambulance, numerous bystanders were around the vehicle and “pointing inside at the driver,” he reported in an affidavit of probable cause filed before District Judge Charles Conway.
When emergency personnel awakened Freeman, he “did not know where he was at when he was trying to explain his location,“ Cox wrote. “Freeman was nervous and was stuttering when I asked him questions.”
Freeman appeared to be under the influence of a narcotic, but he denied taking any medications or drugs before pulling off the busy highway and into the shopping center, police said.
Freeman told police he had stopped to eat at the nearby Five Guys restaurant and again denied taking any drugs.
When Cox asked for identification, Freeman opened the vehicle's center console.
Instead of providing rental papers for the vehicle and personal identification, Freeman handed over criminal “probation papers for another individual,” the affidavit said.
When Freeman reached to retrieve rental papers from the glove box, he appeared to “be attempting to conceal an item,” Cox wrote.
Cox contacted Sgt. Scott Ketteren and his K9 partner, Argos.
Argos indicated there were drugs in the glove box, which officers then found, wrapped inside a plastic grocery store bag.
“It is a very large amount. It wasn't labelled ‘Theraflu,' ” a lethal form of heroin mixed with fentanyl that has killed at least 22 people in Western Pennsylvania, police Chief Thomas Seefeld.
The deadly heroin also has been marked with the names “Bud Ice” and “Income Tax,” authorities said.
“We don't want to release how it was labeled right now because of the ongoing investigation, but it was sent to the lab for testing. We're not quite sure yet where it was headed; that is part of the ongoing investigation too,” Seefeld said.
Freeman was held in the Westmoreland County Prison Monday after failing to post $10,000 bond.
A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for Feb. 18 before Conway.
Paul Peirce is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-850-2860 firstname.lastname@example.org.