Substance Abuse Coalition Warns of Dangers of Synthetic Drugs

The Northern Shenandoah Valley Substance Abuse Coalition, formally the Addiction Action Committee, is warning the community of the dangers of using synthetic drugs after cases of overdoses are reported in our region. On Friday, Virginia State Police reported two overdoses in Shenandoah County from “Spice.” The synthetic drugs used in these overdoses are linked to 15 overdoses in Hagerstown in which victims overdosed on “Strawberry Xtreme Aroma Therapy.” Additionally, at least 12 people in the Harrisonburg area have been hospitalized after using the same drug.Strawberry Xtreme Aroma Therapy2

Synthetic drugs are manufactured by adding chemicals intended to mimic the effects of marijuana. Often it is not known what chemicals have been used to make up the drug because the recipes vary. Using synthetic drugs like “Spice” or “K2” can not only be dangerous, it can be deadly. The health risks associated with using synthetic drugs can include confusion, drowsiness, headaches, increased heart rate, seizures, nausea/vomiting, severe paranoia, and loss of consciousness.

At the beginning of April, Winchester Police responded to a call on Fremont Street involving a 15-year-old male who was found lying on the sidewalk unconscious after using “Spice.” This case remains under investigation.

With the knowledge of the symptoms and dangers of synthetic drug use, community members can protect themselves and their families. Anyone with information on synthetic drug use or sales is asked to contact police in an effort to save lives.

Two Arrested in Stabbing Incident

Winchester Police arrested two males Sunday afternoon after an argument led to a stabbing. On April 19th just after noon officers responded to the 100 block of Bellview Avenue for a reported stabbing. When officers arrived they found a 20-year-old male who was bleeding from his back and hand. An investigation revealed that two males had a verbal argument that became physical. Kevin McDougald, 26, of Winchester was arrested and charged with malicious wounding. William Ray Jenkins, Jr., 20, of Winchester was taken to the hospital to be treated for his non-life-threatening injuries. He was released from the hospital and arrested for assault and battery. Both males were taken to the Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center and held without bond.

Kevin McDougald

Kevin McDougald

William Ray Jenkins, Jr.

William Ray Jenkins, Jr.

Residents Reminded to Not Leave Valuables in Car

Leave It and Lose It updatedPolice Investigate Reports of Smash-and-Grabs

Winchester Police are reminding local residents to not leave valuables in plain sight inside their car, after reports of smash-and-grabs. Six victims have reported having their wallet or purses taken from their vehicles. All of the vehicles were parked in public parking lots and many were in the area of Jim Barnett Park. The incidents occurred on the following days and in these locations:

  • April 12th – 1000 block of East Cork Street between 12:40 and 3 p.m. Passenger’s side front window was smashed and a purse that was sitting on the passenger seat was taken.
  • April 12th – Parking Lot of Student Athletic Center between 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. Passenger’s side front window was smashed and a purse that was sitting on the passenger seat was taken.
  • April 12th – 700 block of University Drive between 1 and 3:30 p.m. Passenger’s side rear window was smashed and a purse on the floor behind the front passenger seat was taken.
  • April 12th – Lowery Drive and University Drive between 2:10 and 2:30 p.m. Driver side front window was left down. Purse was taken.
  • April 12th – 1000 block of East Cork Street between 12:30 and 6 p.m. Sunroof was left open and windows were left open a bit. A wallet was taken.
  • April 13th – First block of Weems Lane between 4:45 and 9:30 p.m. Passenger side window was broken out and wallet on passenger seat was taken.

These are crimes of opportunity in which residents are leaving tempting items in their car, in view of passersby. Residents can discourage such incidents by taking their purse and wallet out of the car, not leaving belongings visible inside the car, locking car doors and rolling up windows, and staying aware of their surroundings and reporting any suspicious activity to police.

Anyone with information on these incidents is asked to call the Crime Solvers HOTLINE at 540-665-TIPS. Individuals who are able to provide information that leads to an arrest in these cases could be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

ECC Specialist of the Year

Emergency Communications Specialist II Michael Sale

Emergency Communications Specialist II Michael Sale

Winchester Emergency Communications Specialist Michael Sale was presented Monday evening with the Dispatcher of the Year Award. Sale has been with the department for five years. He comes to work with a positive attitude and his personality is contagious. Sale comes in on his days off when his co-workers are out sick and he willingly signs up to work additional hours. Congratulations to Michael Sale!

This week we celebrate National Public Safety Telecommunications Week. It’s when we honor the men and women who are our public safety communications professionals who work behind the scenes to help us during emergencies. During an awards ceremony and dinner Monday evening Director of Emergency Communications Erin Elrod shared a quote, “between the thin red line and the thin blue line lies the thinnest gold line. This gold line represents those who rarely are seen but mostly heard. The calm voice in the dark night. Dispatchers – the golden glue that holds it all together.” Elrod recognized the years of service in the Emergency Communications System and noted that with the high turnover rate in Communications, it is important to point out the dedication of these staff members.

We are fortunate to have a group of dedicated Emergency Communications Center Specialists in the City of Winchester Emergency Communication Center. It takes an incredible amount of patience and professionalism for these individuals to calmly dispatch officers or emergency service personnel, all while communicating with an irate or hysterical caller on the phone. Join us in thanking them for their service.

Detectives Investigate Stabbing

The Winchester Police Department is investigating a stabbing that happened on Sunday. Officers responded to the 600 block of Smithfield Avenue around 2:10 p.m. and made contact with the victim who was stabbed in his arm and torso. The incident happened, following an argument and robbery, in the area of the railroad tracks located near North Kent Street and Wyck Street. The victim, a 25-year-old male from Winchester, was taken to Winchester Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries. Officers have identified two suspects who are both juveniles.

The case remains under investigation by detectives with the Criminal Investigations Division. Anyone with information is asked to call the Crime Solvers HOTLINE at 540-665-TIPS. Individuals who are able to provide information that leads to an arrest in this case could be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

Police and Fire Honor Guards Recognize Community Donors

Pictured from left to right: Lt. Mark Lahman, Sgt. Wayne Monse, Cpl. Glenn Macher, Master Patrol Officer Paul McFarland, Sgt. Frank Mytle, Lt. Gerald Bohus, Officer Trey Rounds, and Commander Stephanie Arnold.

Pictured from left to right: Lt. Mark Lahman, Sgt. Wayne Monse, Cpl. Glenn Macher, Master Patrol Officer Paul McFarland, Sgt. Frank Mytle, Lt. Gerald Bohus, Officer Trey Rounds, and Commander Stephanie Arnold.

The Winchester Police and Fire and Rescue Honor Guards recognized community donors during a press conference held Tuesday morning. The groups displayed their new equipment they purchased from donations made by businesses in the community. The donations made it possible for the Winchester Police Department’s Honor Guard to add two new members, Sgt. Frank Myrtle and Master Patrol Officer Paul McFarland. The Winchester Fire and Rescue Department added the following four new members to its team: Firefighter and EMT Jeff Hartman, Firefighter and EMT Ryan Steele, Firefighter and EMT Jeremy Greenbacker, and Firefighter Technician David Kushnir. The Honor Guards were able to purchase uniforms, new flags, flag poles, flag pole holders, flag pole toppers, tassels, and gloves.

The Winchester Police Department Honor Guard received donations from:

  • Woodmen of the World
  • Jones Funeral Home
  • Miller Honda
  • Jim Stutzman Chevrolet-Cadillac
  • Malloy Ford
  • Omps Funeral Home
  • Winchester/Frederick County Law Enforcement Foundation

The Winchester Fire and Rescue Department Honor Guard Received donations from:

  • Jones Funeral Home
  • Woodmen of the World
  • Other private donations received through the Red Basket Website

The honor guards are available for high profile special events, such as ceremonial events, funerals for an officer who is killed in the line of duty, memorial services, parades, and more.

 

Two Arrested for Attempting to Take Tires from City Business

Winchester Police arrested two males after they attempted to take tires from Firestone on Valley Avenue. On Sunday, March 29, 2015, around 1:30 a.m., an officer was patrolling in the area of 2100 Valley Avenue when he saw two individuals inside the rear gated area of Firestone. The males were seen attempting to take tires from the fenced area. James Graham Deering, 26, of Richmond was arrested and charged with burglary with the intent to commit larceny and conspiracy to trespass. James Williams Edwards, 33, of Richmond was charged with larceny, conspiracy to commit trespassing, and possession of marijuana. Both males were taken to the Northwestern Regional Adult Detention Center where they were held without bond.

James Graham Deering

James Graham Deering

James Williams Edwards

James Williams Edwards

Task Force’s Joint Operation Leads to Arrests

The North West Virginia Regional Drug Task Force is working jointly with the United States Postal Services Inspectors Office to crack down on drugs coming into our area by mail.

Jeffrey Alan McCoy

Jeffrey Alan McCoy

On March 19, 2015 Drug Task Force agents intercepted a package containing 16 pounds of high grade marijuana addressed to 400 Pin Oak Lane in Winchester. Agents with the Task Force and USPS Postal Inspectors Office arranged for a controlled delivery to occur at this location. After the package was delivered agents executed a search warrant and seized the 16 pounds of marijuana with a street value of approximately $64,000. Jeffrey Alan McCoy, 33, of Winchester was arrested and charged with possession with intent to distribute marijuana.
On March 24, 2015 Drug Task Force agents and the USPS Postal Inspectors Office intercepted a package containing about 10 pounds of high grade marijuana. The package was being sent to an individual at 2491-30 Martinsburg Pike in Stephenson. Agents arranged for a controlled delivery, executed a search warrant, and recovered 10 pounds of marijuana. Juan Pablo Flores, Jr., 25, of Stephens City and Barbara Lynn Foley, 49, of Stephenson were arrested. Flores, Jr. is charged with possession with intent to distribute marijuana and Foley is charged with possession with intent to sell more than five pounds of marijuana. A further investigation led agents to an address where Flores resides at 301 Sherando Circle in Stephens City where an additional search warrant was executed and agents discovered $19,000.

Juan Pablo Flores, Jr.

Juan Pablo Flores, Jr.

 Barbara Lynn Foley

Barbara Lynn Foley

 

 

 

 

 

On March 26, 2015 Drug Task Force agents including representatives from the Winchester and Shenandoah County Offices initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle on Route 37 just prior to the Route 11/Interstate 81 interchange in Kernstown. Agents discovered about three pounds of marijuana in the vehicle with an estimated street value of $12,000. David Allen McDaniel, 26, of Woodstock was arrested and charged with possession with intent to distribute marijuana. A further investigation led agents to 1040 Dicks Hollow Road in Frederick County. Agents, along with deputies from the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office, executed a search warrant at the residence and located about one pound of marijuana and $10,000. Travis Bryant Newcome, 24, of Frederick County was arrested and charged with distribution of more than ½ ounce of marijuana and possession with intent to distribute marijuana.

David Allen McDaniel

David Allen McDaniel

Travis Bryant Newcome

Travis Bryant Newcome

 

 

 

 

 

All of these cases remain under investigation by Drug Task Force agents.

Detectives Investigate Bank Robbery

Bank Robbery1The Winchester Police Department is investigating an armed bank robbery that happened at BB&T at 2082 South Pleasant Valley Road. Around 11 a.m. a white male entered the bank, displayed a gun, and demanded money. The suspect is described as being in his late 40s to early 50s, wearing a black V-neck t-shirt, blue jeans, a green jacket, a black ski mask, and an orange glove on his left hand. It appears from surveillance pictures that the male has a beard. The male left the bank with an undisclosed amount of cash. He was last seen heading south in the parking lot on foot.

A Winchester Police Department K-9 Unit responded to the scene and attempted to track the suspect, but was unable to locate him.

Anyone with information on this incident is asked to call the Crime Solvers HOTLINE at 540-665-TIPS.  Individuals who are able to provide information that leads to an arrest in this case could be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.

Bank Robbery2 3-19

Police Increase Patrols for St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations

The Winchester Police Department is stepping up patrols for St. Patrick’s Day and the weekend ahead. There will be extra patrols on City streets Tuesday evening and officers will be targeting drunk drivers. The extra patrols are part of the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign. Drivers are reminded to plan ahead before heading out to celebrate the holiday by designating a sober driver before leaving home. We also recommend that you know the phone numbers of local taxi companies so you can call them if you are in need of a ride.Clover

If you suspect a driver is impaired call the non-emergency police telephone number at 540-662-4131. Callers should be prepared to give a description of the vehicle, license plate number, location, and the car’s direction of travel.

Also remember that if you know someone who is about to drive or ride with someone who is under the influence to help them make other arrangements to ensure their safety.

Everyone is reminded to drink responsibly and have a safe holiday weekend.