Man Caught With Controlled Substances, Illegal Weapons in Sugarcreek Borough Waives Hearing

| November 24, 2020

GavelVENANGO CO., Pa. (EYT) – A man recently waived his hearing on charges related to an incident where he reportedly ran from police and was caught with controlled substances and illegal weapons following a report of suspected retail theft in Sugarcreek Borough.

Court documents indicate the following charges against 20-year-old Mario Antonio Whitehead, of Detroit, Michigan, were waived for court on November 18:

– Manufacture, Delivery, or Possession With Intent to Manufacture or Deliver, Felony
– Possession of Controlled Substance, Felony
– Possession Of Firearm Prohibited, Felony 1
– Flight To Avoid Apprehension/Trial/Punishment, Felony 3
– Firearms Not To Be Carried Without License, Felony 3
– Use/Possession Of Drug Paraphernalia, Misdemeanor
– Possess Instrument Of Crime With Intent, Misdemeanor 1
– Make Repairs/Sell/Etc Offensive Weapon, Misdemeanor 1
– Resist Arrest/Other Law Enforcement, Misdemeanor 2

The charges have been transferred to the Venango County Court of Common Pleas.

Whitehead remains lodged in the Venango County Jail with bail denied due to being a “flight risk,” according to the court documents.

The charges stem from an incident that began with a report of a retail theft in Sugacreek Borough, Venango County.

Details of the case:

According to a criminal complaint, around 12:30 p.m. on October 25, Franklin-based State Police were dispatched to the Dollar General store on Allegheny Boulevard for a report of a possible retail theft and public drunkenness incident.

At the scene, Mario Whitehead was identified as the suspect by two witnesses, the complaint states.

Whitehead reportedly walked out of the store wearing a brown coat, as described by the witnesses, and police then approached to inform him he was being investigated for a possible retail theft.

Whitehead stated he didn’t steal anything, and when he was asked to step over to the police vehicle, he took his coat off and ran. A foot pursuit then began, while running Trooper Barnhill attempted to use his taser to stop Whitehead. However, Whitehead continued to run through being tased and also threw a plastic baggie to the ground, according to the complaint.

Whitehead was finally taken into custody after he fell while running from police.

The baggie he threw to the ground was recovered, and it was discovered to contain over 40 grams of a white powdery substance that was sent to an approved lab for additional analysis. Police also retrieved Whitehead’s bag and jacket on the way back to the police vehicle, the complaint indicates.

According to the complaint, Whitehead’s jacket was found to contain a loaded Smith and Wesson 9mm pistol, and the book bag was found to contain a digital scale, an automatic (switch) knife, and wax paper envelopes that are commonly used for distribution of controlled substances.

Whitehead was arraigned in front of Magisterial District Judge Patrick E. Lowrey at 9:15 a.m. on October 26.

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