Story by Rick Hiduk / Map by Google Maps
State Police at Tunkhannock have formally pressed charges against three Luzerne County residents in connection with an impromptu April 24 drug bust at D&C Fuel Plaza on Route 6, west of Tunkhannock. July 9 preliminary hearings in front of District Justice David Plummer have been scheduled for Stephen Manna of Hazleton, Kaitlyn Maria of Shavertown, and Charles Marchise of Bear Creek.
Marchise, 28, was driving the red Nissan Murano that D&C employees saw in their parking lot at about 3:40 am that morning and considered suspicious, prompting a call to the nearby State Police barracks. Trooper Justin Landseidel and an officer recorded simple as Trooper Clark soon pulled in behind the SUV parked in the west side of the building without activating their emergency lights.
Approaching the vehicle on foot from both sides, the officers watched Marchise inhaling a white powder off his hand up a nostril. According to Landseidel’s report, “multiple items consistent with drug use were in plain view.”
Clark removed Marchise from the vehicle, while Landseidel removed Maria, 25, and Manna, 28, for investigation. A search of the vehicle and the defendants revealed more than 60 small wax baggies of various colors and markings containing suspected drug residue, open alcohol containers, and hypodermic needles.
Marchise also showed signs of impairment in the course of submitting to field sobriety tests and was charged with DUI of a controlled substance, primarily meth. He was later found to have a myriad of additional drugs in his system, including amphetamine, Diazapam, THC, Benzoylecgonine, morphine, and fentanyl.
Marchise was charged as well with intentional possession of a controlled substance, 35 counts of use/possession of paraphernalia, unauthorized use of a vehicle while his license was suspended for a DUI, and a BAC of .02 or higher while under suspension for DUI.
Manna faces charges for 30 counts of intentional possession, six counts of use/possession of drug paraphernalia, and public drunkenness or similar misconduct.
Maria was charged with use/possession of drug paraphernalia but reportedly told the arresting officers that she could not be so charged because the hypodermic needle in question was not on her person. She was subsequently charged with scattering rubbish and recklessly endangering another for tossing the evidence out the window.