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Cops, Courts & Fire -Falls Township

Falls Taps Whitney as New Chief of Police

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The Falls Township Police Department will have a new top cop come 2021 when Falls Police Lt. Nelson Whitney takes the helm.
During Monday’s virtual meeting, the Supervisors voted unanimously to appoint Whitney as acting chief effective Sept. 1 and police chief effective Jan. 1, 2021. He will earn $155,000 per year in his new position.
The Board accepted Police Chief William Wilcox’s separation agreement during the May virtual meeting. Wilcox is retiring from his long-time position at year’s end. He has been Chief since October 17, 2007. He was hired by the department in July of 1973. His current salary is approximately $150.000.00 annually.
Wilcox’s separation package includes a cash severance, extended health benefits for himself and family, and a life insurance policy among other benefits, officials said in May.
Lt. Whitney’s police career began in Falls Township on Aug. 9, 1988. His new chapter as acting chief and, come next year chief of police, will mark 32 years of police work.
“It has been an honor serving the community of Falls Township as a police officer for the last 32 years,” Whitney said. “I look forward to the challenges of this new position and thank the Board for their confidence in me. We have excellent officers in the Falls Township Police Department, and I am proud to serve with them.”
Lt. Whitney spent his first 10 years working as a police officer and EMT. In 1998, he transitioned to an investigator in the cold case homicide unit. He was promoted to detective in 1999 and detective corporal in 2002. In 2003, Whitney advanced to detective sergeant and served as supervisor of the detective division, a position he held for 10 years. In 2013, he was promoted to lieutenant, serving as the detective division commander for the following three years. In 2016, Whitney began his current role as lieutenant, serving as the patrol division commander.
As lieutenant, Whitney instituted a program of data-driven, proactive policing to help address community issues related to drug abuse and traffic crashes. He also developed a training profile for new patrol officers emphasizing proactive patrol and increased training of patrol officers in responding to active shooter incidents. Throughout his tenure, Lt. Whitney has served as an instructor for the Falls Township Police Department Youth Police Academy, Falls Township Police Department Citizens Police Academy, as well as the Bucks County Police Training Center and Network of Victim Assistance (NOVA) of Bucks County. A lecturer at
Bucks County Community College and Pennsbury School District, Lt. Whitney has received numerous awards and commendations.

Falls Supervisors will honor the retiring Wilcox at later date in a public meeting the community can attend, officials said in May.

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Falls Township

Two Charged with False Reporting to 911, Threatening Neighbors, Cops Say

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A 911 call describing am armed male with a black handgun at a Falls Township apartment complex turned out to be false, leading to the arrest of two women  for alleged harassment and false reporting to law enforcement in a April incident.

The Falls Township Police were dispatched to the Commons of Fallsington apartment complex on Makefield Road, a little after midnight Saturday, April 27, 2024, authorities said.

Upon arrival, police detained a male who was being accused by two females, of being armed and allegedly threatening the two and others with a handgun.

Police said the women were yelling and screaming and had to be told several times to stop

After further investigation, it was later learned there was no handgun as the two females, identified as Alayna McCandless, 19, and Destiny Giraud, 21, allegedly said in the 911 call, according to the probable cause.

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Police said, they learned McCandless and Giraud were allegedly banging neighbors’ doors and waking several residents, including the complainant and their family. The two accused women became irate and cursing at the victim, asking if she or the neighbors had a man? The victim told police she did not know what was going on and the two females threatened her and her son, who became very upset and began to hyperventilate, due to perceived threat of bodily harm. The victim said, the two accused also threatened her, one with a tazer, the second brandishing a knife.

McCandless and Giraud, both residents of the apartment complex are charged with misdemeanor counts of  terroristic threats, false reporting, disorderly conduct and a summary offense of harassment.

Their preliminary hearing is scheduled for August 7, 2024 and they are being summoned to appear by mail

 

 

 

 

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Falls Township

“Bridging the Gap” with Coffee in Bristol Twp.

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If you visited The Bridge Coffee Shop  in Levittown on Saturday, there was a good chance the barista serving you also moonlights as a Bristol Township Police officer for the community.

Dozens showed up and were greeted by officers from the township who were on hand to greet the community and answer any police related questions locals might have.

Sgt. Jason Mancuso said the focus of the event was to bridge gaps that might exist between locals and the department.

Credit: FB – Bristol Township Police

“All we’re trying do is bridge the gap in the community. A lot of people are often afraid to call the police because it creates anxiety, or they think the department is too busy. That’s not what we’re here for. We’re here for the community, they’re not here for us. We want to partner with the community,” he said.

Credit: Bristol Twp Police

 

Coffee lovers were greeted by officers from the department and customers with young children in several instances introduced and shared a first time experience with a in person police officer.

The Bridge, which opened for business late last year and started out as an idea to create a  community gathering space for fellowship, is supported by Restoration Church.

It’s the perfect place for a community gathering such as a coffee with a cop event, said Andrea Newtown who helps run the day-to-day operations at The Bridge.

 

We just want the community to know the department is for them to help and assist in any way possible, said Mancuso, we want to humanize the badge and let people know we live and work here too just like the community. We will do everything in our power and within the boundaries of the law that we can.

Prior to his promotion to Sgt, Mancuso took over a case in which a Croydon family was being terrorized for reasons that still remain a mystery to many. His work, the victim (s) said, was instrumental in putting that man behind bars and is one such example this publication was privy to see up close.

Credit: Submitted

 

Credit: Laughs for Recovery

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Cops, Courts & Fire -Falls Township

Morrisville Stepfather Guilty of Raping Stepdaughter, Jury Says

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A 33 year-old step father was found guilty of repeatedly raping his step daughter by a Bucks County Jury Friday

Cory Hegelein, of Morrisville, Falls Township was found guilty of rape of a child, statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor, aggravated indecent assault on a person less than 13 years old, indecent assault on a person less than 13 years of age, and corruption of minors.

According to Falls Police last November they attended an interview with the victim and a child advocate organization with regards to the possibility of inappropriate sexual contact with an adult. In the interview the child victim disclosed the week before, November 18 and had been raped again by her stepfather, Hegelein as recent a week prior. The suspect, according to police was 10 and the suspect 31 at the time of the interview.

The victim told police that on some days she stays with her mother and the suspect in their Lower Makefield home. Police ran the mother and suspects name through a state database for address and identification purposes, court records show and they were able to confirm the addresses of both as 1 Makefield Road.

According to court records, the victim told police Hegelein calls her into his room and sticks it in. This has happened more than once the 10 year-old victim told police and as most recently as the week before.

In his closing arguments Friday morning, Deputy District Attorney Jovin Jose said Hegelein used his access to the victim to rape her for years. Hegelein had previously been in a relationship with the girl’s mother.

While most girls her age were enjoying the end of the school year, Jose said, the victim was in court testifying about the worst moments of her life. On Tuesday, the young girl, now 12, bravely testified about Hegelein repeatedly raping her in different rooms in the apartment, describing in detail the horrors he inflicted.

“This is the second time this week I have had the privilege of commending the strength of a young victim who faced the predator who preyed upon her,” District Attorney Jennifer Schorn said. “Thanks to her strength, and the outstanding work done by the prosecutorial team, this defendant stands convicted of these heinous crimes.”

Police interviewed the little girls brother who was able to confirm his sister’s movements and added that Hegelein would call out to  the victim “come in her so we can snuggle.”  Additionally police were able to find out the alleged rapes have been happening for at least two years prior to when the victim was 8 years old. Moreover investigators also confirmed the child’s mother works overnight and was not present during the alleged rapes, court records show.

The victim, according to the criminal complaint, told police of other instances where she was allegedly raped. One being while she was taking a shower, and after he penetrated her a white she saw a white substance come out and was wiped off with a red towel. She additionally alleged he stepfather showed her pornographic images on his digital devices.

Police executed a search warrant locating, clothing, towels and other items she was wearing during and after the alleged rapes. Those items were submitted for biologic testing by police to the Pennsylvania State Police lab, court records show.

Police were able to match DNA taken from the blanket matched Hegelein ‘s DNA and the victims profile.

Police were also granted a search warrant to download Hegelein ‘s  cell phones On it they found pornographic images and a video a what appeared to be a man masturbating in a room with what appears to be the same computer desk and black box, with red lettering  as the one in his home.

The trial before Common Pleas Judge Gary B. Gilman began Monday. Sentencing was deferred for 120 days as Hegelein undergoes a pre-sentence evaluation and an evaluation by the Sex Offender Assessment Board.

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