Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman and Pottstown Police Chief Mark Flanders announces the arrest of Roger Malloy for two counts of homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence, and related offenses for his roles in the deaths of James Crawford and Rachel Witt.
The District Attorney and Chief also announce the arrest of Rafie Ali and Mohammed Himed for corrupt organizations, delivery of a controlled substance, possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, paraphernalia and related offenses for their roles in the sale of K2.
On May 21 at 11:30 p.m. police responded to a one car crash in the area of 520 State St. in Pottstown.
Upon arrival, police found three individuals lying injured in the immediate vicinity of the vehicle. Rachael Witt, age 15, was declared dead at the scene of the crash. James Crawford, 28, was transported to Pottstown hospital and declared dead on March 22 at 12:16 a.m. Kendal Harper was transported to Reading Hospital with severe injuries.
Several witnesses had arrived at the scene after hearing the crash. These witnesses reported to police that two Black males removed the injured individuals from the car before fleeing the scene.
Police determined that the two Black males who had fled the scene were Roger and Robert Malloy.
Police interviewed Robert Malloy on May 22 at 3:22 a.m. He told police that Roger Malloy had been driving the vehicle at the time of the crash. According to Robert Malloy, “Roger started flying. He was doing like 60 miles per hour and I was yelling at him to slow down.” Soon afterwards, Roger Malloy lost control of the vehicle while going around a turn. Robert Malloy further indicated that the occupants of the car, including the driver, Roger Malloy, had been smoking K2 prior to the accident.
Police interviewed Harper on May 23. He also told police that Roger Malloy had been driving the car at the time of the crash, and that he had smoked K2 earlier in the evening.
On May 22, police arrested Roger Malloy. He gave a statement to the police in which he admitted that he had been driving the vehicle at the time of the crash that killed Rachael Witt and James Crawford.
On June 29, police re-interviewed Malloy, who told police he smoked K2 five or ten minutes before the crash and it caused his heart to beat faster, blurred his vision, and caused a sense of panic. Malloy also added that it made him feel like he was having an asthma attack.
K2 has become a generic name for any of a number of substances also known as synthetic marijuana.
When smoked, these substances replicate the high of marijuana, but do not contain THC, marijuana’s active chemical. Reports from emergency rooms and poison centers have indicated that K2 can also produce effects not seen with marijuana use. The most serious of these side effects are panic, rapid heart rate, and anxiety that results in suicidal episodes.
On June 15, in Abington Township, a young man leaped off of a third story of a four-story parking garage while under the influence of K2.
K2 is illegal. On August 22, 2011 the legislation making this the law in the Commonwealth took effect. Efforts had been made in recent years to identify the most commonly used chemical compounds found in K2, and those substances have been designated by the legislation as a schedule I controlled substance.
Possessing K2 for personal use is an ungraded misdemeanor. Possessing K2 with the intent to distribute is an ungraded felony. It carries the following mandatory minimums: for first time offender, possessing 2-10 grams of K2 with the intent to distribute carries a mandatory 2-year prison sentence; possessing 10-100 grams of K2 with the intent to distribute carries a mandatory 3-year prison sentence; possessing 100 or more grams of K2 with the intent to distribute carries a mandatory 5-year prison sentence.
For second and subsequent offenses, the mandatories are 3, 5, and 7-years, respectively. There are many brands of K2. “K2”, “K3” and “Spice”, are the most common. The brand that Roger Malloy smoked on the night of May 21 was called “Deadman.”
According to all the parties involved, the K2 that Roger Malloy smoked on the night of May 21 was purchased at the Achi Store at 315 E. High St.
On May 22, an undercover police officer purchased two containers of K2 from the same store.
The K2 was not on display. It was hidden from public view, and the store clerk had to reach under the counter to retrieve it.
Later that day, Pottstown Police served a search warrant on store. Police recovered over thirty vials of K2, more than thirty crack pipes, thirteen bowls used for smoking marijuana, more than $1,000 cash, and a handgun.
Rafie Ali, the store owner and Mohammed K. Himed, a store employee, were arrested last night in the Achi Store.
All three defendants will be arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Edward Kropp, Sr. Judge Kropp’s Court is located at 2093 E. High St. in Pottstown.
The cases will be prosecuted by First Assistant District Attorney Kevin R. Steele and Assistant District Nicholas Reifsnyder.