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Valley News Dispatch

3 women charged in overdose death of Ford City man

Chuck Biedka
| Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2018, 6:06 p.m.

Three Armstrong County women are charged in a case involving the overdose death of a Ford City man last year.

One of the women, Jessica Ridinger, 37, whose last known address was in Shelocta, is charged with drug delivery resulting in the death of Jonathan Waugaman, 41, on Sept. 29, 2017.

Two others, Lacey Carney, 31, of Kittanning and Rhonda Claypoole, 26, of Worthington, are charged with conspiracy to commit theft and other charges.

Waugaman and Carney drove to Shelocta to buy heroin from Ridinger, state police said.

On the way back after taking drugs, Waugaman overdosed and Carney took over driving, police said.

Police allege she drove to a site near Crimm Road in Kittanning Township.

There, Claypoole and Carney tried to revive Waugaman, but they were unsuccessful, police say.

The two women allegedly stole items from Waugaman and used his stolen cellphone to call Armstrong County 911.

Claypoole allegedly gave a false name to 911 operators. The two women allegedly destroyed or removed evidence in an attempt to cover up the incident.

Neither was there when state police arrived.

In addition to drug delivery resulting in death, Ridinger is charged with drug delivery, criminal use of a phone and involuntary manslaughter.

Carney and Claypoole are charged with having drug paraphernalia, obstructing justice, abuse of a corpse, receiving stolen property, tampering with or fabricating evidence, and hindering apprehension.

Carney also is charged with drug possession.

Ridinger was in the Armstrong County Jail on $100,000 bail pending an Aug. 21 preliminary hearing before District Judge Kevin Lee McCausland.

According to court records, Carney and Claypoole have not been arraigned yet.

Chuck Biedka is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chuck at 724-226-4711, cbiedka@tribweb.com or via Twitter @ChuckBiedka.

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