Two home invasions within 24 hours

Published 9:53 am Friday, November 20, 2009

The craving for prescription drugs is being blamed for two home invasions within 24 hours this week, one on each end of the county.

Several people have been arrested in connection with the Ironton area incident: The suspects in the other incident remain at large.

Lawrence County Sheriff’s Detective Aaron Bollinger said between 1:30 and 2 a.m. Wednesday, three men entered a camper at a campsite on Lawrence Street in Proctorville and demanded money and drugs. The three men were carrying firearms and a stun gun.

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“We believe the three are from the Huntington (W.Va.) area,” Bollinger said. “They were wearing masks on their faces.”

Three victims were treated at St. Mary’s Medical Center in Huntington, W.Va., and released.

Then just before 2 a.m. Thursday, people armed with a crowbar broke into a house on Porter Gap Road (County Road 21) in Upper Township and demanded money, drugs and a lock box from the occupants who had been asleep when their home was entered.

The victims told authorities two people entered their home; a neighbor, however, told police anywhere from 3 to 5 people walked to the residence at the time of the incident. Two suspects were identified early on in the investigation and were arrested at their Kitts Hill home shortly thereafter.

Steven R. Triplett, 31, of 9669 State Route 141, was charged with aggravated robbery. Rosie Moreland, 26, of the same address, was charged with complicity to aggravated robbery.

Both were taken to the Lawrence County Jail. They were arraigned later in the morning Thursday in Ironton Municipal Court.

Judge O. Clark Collins set bond at $100,000 for each of the two and scheduled a preliminary hearing for Wednesday of next week. Collins appointed Luke Styer to represent Triplett and Warren Morford to represent Moreland.

Bollinger said items taken in the home invasions were found at the couple’s residence and in their vehicle. Both Triplett and Moreland allegedly admitted to taking part in the crime.

Later in the day, four more people were arrested in connection with the incident. They are Michael C. White, 23, of 1780 County Road 47, Waterloo, Andrew Barried, 20, Raceland, Ky. Tony Lee Wilson II, 19 2549 County Road 5, Kitts Hill and Lanelle Davis, 19, of 911 Center St., Ironton.

“The common denominator seems to be the need for drugs, particularly oxycodone and other pain medication,” Bollinger said.

Anyone with information about the Proctorville incident is strongly encouraged to call the sheriff’s office at 532-3525.