Police: Search turns up drugs, cash, stolen gun

Hotel staff called 911 for suspected overdose

A couple oversleeping their checkout at an Altoona hotel led to the seizure of a large amount of methamphetamine, cash and a stolen gun, according to police.

Ryan J. Harshaw, 32, and Kristin M. McCoy, 28, both of 400 Hart St., Hollidaysburg, were arrested Monday afternoon at the Fairfield Inn on Pleasant Valley Boulevard after a 911 call by hotel staff who thought the couple had overdosed. Police allegedly turned up four ounces of methamphetamine, about $3,000 in cash and a stolen Smith & Wesson M&P 9 mm handgun.

Altoona police Detective Sgt. Chris Moser said the couple was supposed to check out at 1 p.m. and when the staff tried to contact the pair in the room, they found the door latched, but no one was answering. When the staff managed to break into the room, they couldn’t wake the pair and thought they were overdosing and called 911.

That call also brought Altoona police to the scene, and after Harshaw refused medical treatment and tried to leave, officers asked him to return to the room and speak with them.

According to the charges, hotel employees reportedly saw a large amount of cash sitting on a counter in the room and a search of the room turned up methamphetamine in a drawer. Inside two backpacks belonging to Harshaw, officers allegedly found

10 grams of cocaine, three glass pipes, two digital scales, empty mini plastic bags, sandwich bags and the loaded handgun. The total amount of cash located in the backpacks was $2,763, with another $180 found in Harshaw’s wallet, police added.

Moser said Tuesday the gun was reported stolen in Altoona in March.

When police were taking Harshaw from the hotel, an officer allegedly saw McCoy transferring something from her Chevrolet Cruze to Harshaw’s Kia Optima.

Police then took McCoy into custody over the methamphetamine found in the hotel room, and officers staked out the vehicles while search warrants were obtained.

Inside the trunk of Harshaw’s car, police allegedly found four ounces of methamphetamine, a notebook that police said contained an “owe sheet” and a syringe. An Apple laptop computer and a “signal jammer” were also found in the truck.

When questioned, Har­shaw allegedly admitted he sold methamphetamine and described himself as “a middle man,” police pointed out in the charges. He also said he was given the gun three weeks ago and thought it belonged to someone who had died, but he also knew it was illegal.

McCoy and Harshaw both face felony and misdemeanor drug-related charges and Harshaw is also charged with illegal possession of a firearm, carrying a gun without a license and receiving stolen property.

Bail was set for Harshaw by Magisterial District Judge Steven Jackson at $20,000 cash, and he remains in Blair County Prison. McCoy was released on a unsecured $20,000 bail.

A preliminary hearing is slated for Sept. 5 before Magisterial District Judge Ben Jones.

Mirror Staff Writer Greg Bock is at 946-7458.


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