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Couple jailed after police find heroin, cocaine and small child


JOHNSTOWN, Pa. -- Johnstown police made what they call a significant bust inside a Johnstown apartment Thursday morning in a neighborhood where many children live, with a school bus stop just feet away.

Johnstown police have two people in jail accused of dealing cocaine and heroin out of that apartment. In addition to several drug charges, the couple has also been charged with child endangerment after police found a7-year-old child inside.

Neighbors told 6 News they were awakened about 6 a.m. Thursday to the sound of flash bangs and police on loudspeakers. They said it was scary to wake up to, but told 6 News they knew exactly what was going on and said they're relieved their neighborhood is a little safer.

Investigators said they had been narrowing in on the second floor of the apartment along Highland Avenue in Moxham for only a couple of weeks, before stepping in.

"It was a relatively short investigation," said Johnstown Police Chief Craig Foust. "We received information that it was a very active location. There was a lot of traffic."

After several undercover buys and tips from neighbors, the Cambria County SERT team assembled and raided the apartment early Thursday morning. When they got inside, police said, they found exactly what they were looking for.

"A fairly large amount of heroin and crack cocaine were located along with approximately $7,000 in cash," said Foust.

In addition to packaging materials and equipment, police said they also found the 7-year-old child they thought was inside.

"We have to protect the children and the innocent victims in this and that's one of the things that led to us serving the warrant quickly," said Foust.

The child's mother, Shavon Baskin, and her boyfriend, Dante Bradford, were arrested and taken straight to jail. Foust said this most recent bust is an example of a new trend the community can expect to see more often.

"As soon as we can get the information, enough for a search warrant, we're serving that warrant and not trying to work up the system," said Foust. "We're trying to eradicate these problems in the neighborhoods as soon as we can. I anticipate there will be many more in the future."

Bradford and Baskin are in jail on a combined $350,000 bond. Foust said that's a lot for a drug case, but said it's something he's happy to see because it shows all facets of the law working together to solve a serious problem.

 
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Edgar Snyder

Washington Times

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