SALEM - A Salem man is facing an aggravated robbery charge after allegedly trying to rob a couple at knifepoint Monday morning near Sparkle Market, while a Youngstown man found later at his apartment is facing drug possession and tampering with evidence charges.
Matthew Juillerat, 23, of 1080 N. Lincoln Ave., was taken into custody for the second-degree felony after police learned he was hiding in his mother's basement at a nearby home in the 300 block of South Lincoln Avenue.
As part of the investigation, Salem police and the county drug task force secured and searched Juillerat's residence on North Lincoln where they found Randolph Moore Jr., 21, of Youngstown.
He was charged with illegal possession of prescription medication, a fifth-degree felony, and a third-degree felony of tampering with evidence for allegedly trying to conceal drugs.
Salem Detective Dave Talbert said agents seized 38 grams of heroin, 15 grams of powdered cocaine and five grams of crack cocaine carrying a combined street value of $9,500 from the apartment. They also found some marijuana, cash, and drug paraphernalia used in trafficking and drug abuse, including syringes. A handgun was also recovered from the apartment.
Possible additional charges will be reviewed by the county grand jury. Both Juillerat and Moore were taken to the county jail, with initial court appearances expected today.
"We believe the motive behind the attempted robbery was to fund the suspect's alleged drug habit," Talbert said.
Police were initially called to the area of South Lincoln for a robbery in progress at 9:33 a.m. Monday, with a patrolman flagged down by a man in a driveway. He reported that the two passengers in his car, a male and a female, had been robbed by a male with a knife. According to the report, the victims said he asked for money and then pulled a knife out of his pocket. He was unable to get anything from the two victims and they reported seeing him run into a house.
Other officers arrived and contact was made with a woman at the house who said her son had come inside and went to the basement, but he did not reside there. She gave officers permission to enter and they issued several commands ordering him to come up out of the basement, which he did and was taken into custody. A weapon suspected in the crime was seized from the house.
The two victims did not speak English, but through an interpreter indicated an altercation took place between the would-be robber and them. Details of the altercation remain under investigation. The two victims were taken to Salem Regional Medical Center, treated and released for minor injuries.
Police Chief J.T. Panezott urged anyone living in the city who may be a victim of a crime to call the police department for help. That phone call could help to stop a future crime. He said it doesn't matter who anyone is, if someone is a victim of a crime, the police are there to help everyone.
Talbert noted that if there's a language barrier, the police department has resources to break the barrier. In this case, the victims called someone they trusted who speaks English and he called the police.
Panezott praised the work of his officers, the detectives and the DTF, saying his officers responded quickly. Talbert said it all started with the officers on the road, then the detectives jumped in and everyone worked closely with the DTF. He said that working together is what yielded the results they had.