An Allentown woman had her two children with her when she drove to West Bethlehem to get crack cocaine from a drug dealer, city police allege in an arrest warrant executed on Tuesday, more than two years after the alleged buy.
Jennifer B. Stewart, 41, of 209 W. Tilghman St., Allentown, was charged with possession of crack cocaine, intentionally purchasing crack cocaine, possession of drug paraphernalia and two counts of endangering the welfare of children.
The alleged crack purchase took place June 11, 2010. It was unclear from the affidavit of probable cause why Stewart was not brought into custody until Tuesday.
According to the affidavit:
- Members of the Bethlehem Police Department’s Special Operations/Vice Unit were tailing a “known drug dealer,” who drove his car to the 600 block of Fifth Avenue and stopped next to a Cadillac sedan, which was being driven by Stewart.
- Stewart got out of her car and walked to the driver’s side window of the drug dealer’s car, stopped for a short period of time, then walked back to her own car and drove away.
- Vice Unit officers and patrol division officers followed Stewart onto Route 378 and conducted a traffic stop there. Inside the car, along with Stewart, was one child seated in the front passenger seat and another in the back.
- After being asked to get out of the vehicle, Stewart reached into her right rear pants pocket and pulled out her hand with a closed fist. Police told her to open her hand and she did, revealing a vial containing what turned out to be nearly a half-gram of crack cocaine.
- Police made arrangements to have a family member come pick up the children, Stewart was taken into custody and the car was towed from the scene. It is not clear from the court record how Stewart was released after that.
- In Stewart's purse, police found numerous empty crack vials, a spoon and other paraphernalia.
- In an interview at Bethlehem Police headquarters, Stewart admitted to buying the crack cocaine for $40 and that she had been buying between $50 and $100 worth of the drug from the same dealer once a week for at least a year.
Stewart was arraigned Tuesday before District Judge Wayne Maura and committed to Lehigh County Prison in lieu of $15,000 bail.