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Several face DUI, theft-related charges

Four people charged with DUI

Suspected drunk driver Taurance Johnson, of 1122 Charles St., had been taken into custody and driven by a state trooper to UPMC Williamsport, where he freely submitted a blood sample on the morning of Feb. 28, according to court records.

However, after he was released by police, Johnson, 39, sent a text message to the hospital “offering to pay whatever or give whatever to have his blood-alcohol concentration level altered to be under .08,” a trooper alleged in an affidavit.

Johnson, driving a 2003 Ford Explorer, was stopped in the area of Riverside Drive and Maynard Street in South Williamsport about 12:10 a.m. after a state trooper recognized him and knew his license was suspended, the affidavit stated.

Approaching the driver, the trooper detected an alcoholic beverage coming from the vehicle, police said. Johnson showed signs of impairment while undergoing a series of field sobriety tests, police said.

Johnson, who had a blood-alcohol concentration level of .12, was charged with DUI, tampering with evidence, driving with a suspended license and careless driving. He was free on $5,000 bail set by District Judge Gary Whiteman.

In another case before Whiteman, Duane Neufer, 41, of 145 Chadlee Drive, South Williamsport, was arrested for the fifth time for DUI when South Williamsport police stopped his pickup truck after he ran a red light at South Market Street and West Mountain Avenue about 4:15 p.m. on March 6, according to an affidavit.

“I could smell an overwhelming odor of alcohol coming from inside (the truck),” an officer wrote in the document.

At first Neufer blamed the odor of alcohol on his passenger, saying that was coming from her, police said. However, he eventually admitted to the officer that he had had “a couple of drinks, a pitcher of beer and two shots,” the affidavit stated.

Neufer, who is on probation due to prior DUI convictions, refused to provide a blood sample, police said. Charged with DUI, Neufer is free on $15,000 bail.

It also was the fifth DUI arrest for William Welch when the 63-year-old motorist was taken into custody after he pulled in front of another vehicle at East Third and Basin streets about 6:15 p.m. on Jan.. 29, causing a crash, city police said in an affidavit.

“A strong odor of an alcoholic beverage could be detected from Welch’s breath,” an officer wrote in the affidavit.

Welch, of Lock Haven, admitted to the officer that he had just left a tavern where he “had a few drinks,” the affidavit stated. His blood-alcohol concentration level was .17, police said. Arraigned before Aaron Biichle, he is free on $15,000 bail.

In another case, motorist Damien Washington, 42, of 1125 Market St., was suspected of being “under the influence of a drug or combination of drugs” when a state trooper stopped his 2018 Nissan Altima at Sixth and Hepburn streets in the city about 12:10 a.m. Tuesday, according to court records.

Washington was stopped because the license plate on his car had expired, police said.

The driver was taken to UPMC Williamsport to submit a blood sample, but he refused, police said.

While at the hospital, Washington “began yelling very loudly in front of the staff,” and “constantly used derogatory language and obscenities. He was asked to stop multiple times, but did not comply,” a trooper said in an affidavit.

Following his arraignment before District Judge Jerry C. Lepley on charges of DUI of a controlled substance and disorderly conduct, Washington was committed to the Lycoming County Prison in lieu of $3,500 bail.

City man faces felony theft charge

David Hugh Evearts, 35, of 333 Brandon Ave., has been charged with felony theft from motor vehicle, theft and receiving stolen property after he was caught on surveillance video removing papers from Jason Bailey’s pickup truck while it was parked in front of Bailey’s home in the 300 block of East Ross Street on Jan. 17, city police alleged.

Following his arraignment before Biichle, Evearts was released on $2,500 bail.

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