PUNXSUTAWNEY — A Jefferson County woman has been accused of treating several underage boys to a three-county vandalism spree funded by her Pennsylvania public assistance benefits.
Troopers at Punxsutawney filed charges Thursday against Erica Huey, reporting that she allowed the purchase of 35 dozen eggs with her Access card last fall at a Walmart store, and drove with five juvenile boys while they threw the eggs at vehicles in Indiana, Jefferson and Clearfield counties.
The youths hit targets in Canoe, Banks and Montgomery townships in northeastern Indiana County; Burnside Borough, Sandy Township and DuBois in Clearfield County; and in Punxsutawney, Big Run, Reynoldsville and Sykesville boroughs and Young, Perry and McCalmont townships in Jefferson County, between 10 p.m. Nov. 17 and 10 a.m. Nov. 18, according to a news release.
“It appears the victims were chosen at random,” said Trooper John Young, the investigating officer.
Young reported that 28 victims filed damage reports; in one instance, a car on the Murray’s Ford auto dealership lot in DuBois sustained more than $500 in damage. No one was injured in the vandalism incidents.
“We identified quite a few of the suspects within a week,” Young said. “It took just a while longer to identify them all.”
Although the case was solved early on, Young said the paperwork was delayed until now while prosecutors in the three counties arranged to have all the charges prosecuted in Jefferson County.
In a criminal complaint filed in Punxsutawney District Court, troopers named Huey, 36, on six counts of corruption of minors, all first-degree misdemeanors; two misdemeanor counts of criminal mischief; and 54 summary counts of conspiracy to criminal mischief.
Online court records show Huey has been ordered to appear for a preliminary hearing May 23 before District Judge Douglas Chambers.
Young said he explored whether Huey could be held accountable for abuse of her welfare money, but found no applicable criminal charge.
Troopers withheld the youths’ names, ages and addresses, and reported in a news release that they face a combined 10 misdemeanor and 270 summary counts of criminal mischief.