The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

January 24, 2013

West End pair held for trial

JOHNSTOWN — Two residents of Johnstown’s West End face a trial on drugs and weapons charges.

Amanda Martinez, 26, and Earl P. Mitchell Jr., 19, both of

G Street, were ordered held for court following a preliminary hearing before District Judge Michael Musulin of Johnstown.

City police were called to their home Dec. 28 after a neighbor reported having been threatened with a handgun.

When police confronted Mitchell at his apartment, they noticed fresh snow on his shoes and clothing. Officers discovered an open window in the apartment with fresh tracks leading to a vacant apartment.

Through the window of the vacant apartment, police said they could see marijuana packaged for sale. Both apartments were searched after warrants were obtained.

Police said they seized a large amount of marijuana, electronic scales, packaging materials, potting soil, plant lighting, heaters, fans and several guns. Two of the guns had been reported stolen. A bulletproof vest was found in the suspects’ apartment, police said.

The drugs had an estimated street value of $8,000.

Both suspects were arrested at the scene.

As Martinez was being led away, she was heard yelling that the neighbor had made a big mistake and added, “You are going to get killed,” police said.

Martinez and Mitchell each face three drug charges along with receiving stolen property, possession of an instrument of crime, conspiracy and making terroristic threats.

In addition, Martinez is charged with witness intimidation and Mitchell is charged with simple assault, reckless endangerment, burglary and criminal trespass.

Each is being held in the Cambria County Prison on $200,000 percentage bond.

Their hearing was held on Tuesday.

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What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

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