Two face charges in Monessen drug overdose death

June 20, 2014
Virgil J. Walker

MONESSEN – Two Mon Valley residents are facing charges they failed to cooperate with Monessen police while officers were investigating the February drug overdose death of a Donora woman in the Westmoreland County city.

Police this week charged Angela R. Beresh, 30, of Monongahela, and Virgil J. Walker, 57, of Monessen, with hindering apprehension, tampering with evidence and making false reports surrounding the circumstances of the Feb. 6 death of Ashley Vince, court records state.

Vince, 27, was found dead, her nude body covered with two blankets, at 5:43 a.m. that day in Vince’s residence at 108 Knox Ave., police stated in the affidavit. A pathology report later determined she died of an overdose from ingesting cocaine, oxycodone and trazodone, and other complications, the record shows.

Police were initially dispatched to the wrong address and were later told by a 911 dispatcher that Walker had refused to follow emergency medical directions and render aid to the victim, the affidavit alleges. The dispatcher also told police a toilet was being flushed many times while Walker was on the phone with 911.

The paramedic also said it appeared Vince had been “deceased for some time” before she arrived at the residence, police said.

Walker, who is the victim’s uncle, told police that Vince and Beresh had visited him that morning and that Beresh wanted to find crack. Police claim he also made inconsistent and false statements regarding what had taken place before Vince died.

Police made similar accusations in court records against Beresh, of 408 Second St., adding she allegedly stated she had given Vince some trazodone before she died. That prompted police to question and detain her with plans to charge her with drug delivery resulting in death, a charge that has yet to be filed against her.

Walker and Beresh also are facing charges in the case of possession of drug paraphernalia.

Walker is in Westmoreland County Jail on $10,000 bond set Tuesday by District Judge Joseph Dalfonso, and is facing other charges in a separate assault case. Beresh was charged via a summons issued Tuesday, the records indicate.

Scott Beveridge is a North Charleroi native who has lived most of his life in nearby Rostraver Township. He is a general assignments reporter focusing on investigative journalism and writing stories about the mid-Mon Valley. He has a bachelor's degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and a master's from Duquesne University. Scott spent three weeks in Vietnam in 2004 as a foreign correspondent under an International Center for Journalists fellowship.

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