PHOENIXVILLE — Twin brothers appeared loaded down for a confrontation when authorities searched their shared apartment on Buchanan Street Sunday, police said.
Phoenixville Police discovered a 12-gauge shotgun and an AK-47, both loaded, in separate rooms, “ready to go,” along with a police-style bulletproof vest complete with trauma plates when they arrested Michael and William Lance.
There was also an extra, full “banana” magazine for the AK-47 present, police said.
“A trauma plate is something he’s wearing because he’s preparing for some sort of run-in with another drug dealer or a run-in with law enforcement,” said Phoenixville Police Sgt. Glenn Eckman. “I’ve been doing this for 20 years and I’d say they were ready for a confrontation with police.”
Eckman is the detective in charge of Phoenixville’s drug enforcement investigations.
Police served a search warrant in connection with a previous criminal mischief case around 7:09 p.m., Eckman said.
The Lances, both 27, were allegedly discovered in their bedrooms and arrested without incident.
After a search, police discovered 12 marijuana plants “along with specific lights used to grow plants indoors above them,” according to a criminal complaint police filed.
Additionally, police found “multiple bags ... common for the sale of marijuana” with the drug in them, “multiple marijuana roaches that show marijuana smoking going on in the apartment,” packaging and digital scales associated with drug sales and four water pipes and a glass pipe, all allegedly used to smoke marijuana, according to police.
A locked box was discovered during Sunday’s initial search, Eckman said, for which another search warrant was secured.
Investigators found approximately $2,000 in cash in the box, along with extra marijuana and paperwork indicating the Lances had a dealing operation, according to police.
Because of these reported findings, the Lances were charged with conspiracy to manufacture and deliver drugs, conspiracy of possessing and/or using drug paraphernalia and conspiracy to deliver drug paraphernalia.
The shotgun police allegedly discovered was located without a trigger lock in a bedroom where clothing for small children laid on a bed. Eckman said two children, under 24-months-old, were in the apartment at the time of the search.
As such, the brothers will face two counts of endangering the welfare of children.
When the Lances were originally arraigned, their bail was set at 10 percent of $50,000.
However, Eckman made a motion to increase their bail Tuesday.
“I made that motion before Judge (Theodore) Michaels yesterday,” Eckman said. “One: for public safety. If (they) have the means to run this operation, they can rebound. Two: there was the safety of the neighborhood.”
Eckman said neighbors approached police after the arrest to thank them.
Bail was readjusted to $150,000 cash Tuesday for both Michael and William.
According to court documents, as of Monday, when their bail was lower, neither brother posted bail and they were confined in Chester County Prison.
Both brothers have arrest charges dating back to different incidents in 2006, according to a search of records.
William was arrested for possession of a controlled substance and paraphernalia as well as disorderly conduct while Michael was arrested for similar charges.
All of the charges against Michael in the 2006 incident were withdrawn except for the disorderly conduct offense.
This story is from www.pottsmerc.com.