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Teens taken into custody after leaving drugs for murder suspect

January 29, 2005|by CANDICE BOSELY

martinsburg@herald-mail.com

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Two teenagers were taken into police custody Friday after they left drugs in a bathroom in Berkeley County Magistrate Court for a woman who appeared for a hearing related to a recent murder case, police said.

Lt. K.C. Bohrer of the Berkeley County Sheriff's Department said the teenagers are a 14-year-old boy and a 16-year-old girl.

Bohrer alleged that drugs hidden in the women's bathroom were for Mary Crawford, 31, who was brought to Magistrate Court on a fugitive warrant charging her with murder in connection with the death of her grandfather.

Escorted by a bailiff, Crawford went to the bathroom before her hearing began. Police said that the drugs were left near one of two toilets in the bathroom - the only women's bathroom in the building.

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Officers learned of the planned drug transactions by monitoring the phone calls Crawford made and received while in Eastern Regional Jail, Bohrer said.

Bohrer and other deputies were awaiting her arrival.

After Crawford exited the bathroom, a female Magistrate Court employee searched her and found pills, cigarettes and a substance that appeared to be marijuana hidden in her genital area, Bohrer said.

Drugs also were left in the men's bathroom, but those were not picked up by an inmate and instead were seized by police, Bohrer said.

Crawford and her boyfriend, Shawn Jason Cole, 29, were brought to the courthouse so a magistrate could ascertain whether they still intended to fight extradition. In court paperwork filled out on Jan. 19, both indicted they were not going to return voluntarily to Louisiana to face charges of second-degree murder.

Police allege Crawford and Cole killed Crawford's grandfather - 80-year-old Henry Ramirez - on Jan. 6 in Louisiana and drove his body to Berkeley County in the back of a Budget rental truck.

Ramirez's body was found buried in a shallow grave on Jan. 11. The body, which was wrapped in blankets and garbage bags, was found buried in a secluded spot off Jenkins Road, which is a gravel road between the communities of Gerrardstown and Shanghai.

Both Crawford and Cole told Magistrate Joan Bragg that they still do not want to return to Louisiana.

Assistant Prosecutor Joshua Henline asked for 60-day extensions on the fugitive warrants so he can obtain a governor's warrant demanding Cole and Crawford return to Louisiana. Bragg granted the extensions.

Cole and Crawford are being held without bail in Eastern Regional Jail.

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