Your Holiday Was Better than This Guy's

Cops, not Santa visit home the weekend before Christmas.

A 21-year-old Tredyffrin man faces drug charges after police and medics were called to his home back on December 21.

According to charges, filed with the district court on Christmas Eve, Berwyn Fire Company medics were called to the home of Andrew Geringer at 6:44 p.m. on Friday December 21. When first responders arrived, Tredyffrin Police say Geringer was "under the influence of some type of substance."

Also on Patch Monday: The T/E School Board to hold special meeting on whether to raise taxes above 1.7% for next school year.

According to an affidavit of probable cause in the case, police say they were advised that "Geringer is a recovering heroin user and they believe that he was under the influence. Berwyn Medics responded and began treating Geringer. For the safety of first responders, a search of the immediate area was conducted for the needle used to inject the suspected heroin."

According to public court charging documents Police say that "One blue wax paper bag was seen on the night table next to Geringer;s bed. The bag was empty indicating the substance injected was from this bag. A clear glassine bag was also located containing additional unopened blue wax paper bags. A silver spoon with burnt residue, a black lighter and syringes were also located on top of the table. A single syringe with the orange cap off was located on the floor next to Geringer's body upon arrival.  All evidence items were seized. Geringer was removed from the residence by Berwyn ambulance and taken to Paoli Hospital for heroin overdose."

TheTruthHurts January 07, 2013 at 02:51 PM
I am trying to understand why the "funny" story headline seemed appropriate to the "reporter" of this story. This is a serious matter, not a joke. I question why this story needs to be reported at all, but since it constitutes news on a site like this one, at least you could treat the subject matter with the seriousness that it deserves.
Teri Santivasci January 07, 2013 at 04:12 PM
I agree with TheTruthHurts. I was shocked to see the Patch treat this situation with such insensitivity. Why is it the leading article? I read the Patch for local news, not to read about local residents who are struggling with serious and personal issues.
Ellie Cicchitti January 07, 2013 at 05:20 PM
I am appalled that Bob Byrne and the TE Patch find this story noteworthy to share with the general population. You should be ashamed of yourself! My heart goes out to this sick young man and his family.
Bob Byrne (Editor) January 07, 2013 at 06:00 PM
This is yet another example of how drug cases in Tredyffrin and Easttown seem to illicit calls for "special treatment" from some. Drugs, drug abuse and the risk the problem poses for the entire community are as real in TE as they are in any other community. In fact, the problem may be worse here since many would like to see the arrests and public records kept in the dark, or simply "swept under the rug." While the subject of this case, which is a matter of public record, may indeed be a "sick young man" he put himself, his family and the first responders at risk. Tredyffrin Police put this suspect's name on the public record. Alleged crimes like this not only take a horrible toll on the families involved, they take a toll on the community at large. Patch has and will continue to cover drug crimes in Tredyffrin and Easttown. Drug crimes in general (this case is still going through the courts and suspects, including the one in this story are presumed innocent until proven otherwise) cost everyone in any affected communities. Police responded to a potentially dangerous scene. The Chester County courts are now involved and there are direct financial costs to the community at large for the hours involved. The Berwyn Fire Company sent medics to the scene, putting them at risk. Heroin, as allegedly involved in this case, is illegal. Police, Paramedics, Courts are all now involved in this case involving an adult suspect-at public expense.
Teri Santivasci January 07, 2013 at 06:47 PM
Bob, Your response is as insensitive as your article. No one was asking you to sweep drug arrests "under the rug". We didn't like your inappropriate headline or the extensive discussion on the drug paraphernelia found in the room. If you are truly concerned about drug crimes in our area, then please do an actual investigative story that gives drug statistics and includes interviews with law enforcement. That is the type of news stories that we are looking for in this area, not sensationalistic stories about a man struggling with an addiction.
cast4 January 07, 2013 at 08:31 PM
Couldn't have said it better, Bob. I wonder how many people would comment asking for privacy if a story was written about an African American person from West Philly OD'ing on Heroin.
cast4 January 07, 2013 at 08:38 PM
You do realize that the information Bob provided in the article about the drug paraphernalia came directly from the criminal complaint the police filed. It is public record.
Tredyffrin Panhandler January 07, 2013 at 09:11 PM
I guess our local patch is getting a little tabloid-y. Bummer.
D. S. January 07, 2013 at 09:39 PM
"Your Holiday Was Better than This Guy's . Cops, not Santa visit home the weekend before Christmas" These quotes are inappropriate. Please stick to reporting the facts.
Bob Byrne (Editor) January 07, 2013 at 10:18 PM
D.S., While I understand your point of view regarding the headline, I think it could also be argued that drug crimes, including alleged cooking of heroin in a private home, putting paramedics, police officers, neighbors, and (God forbid) innocent children i the street and other drivers at risk, tying up law enforcement officers, investigators, prosecutors, a hospital emergency room, 911 dispatchers, (among others) is perhaps far more inappropriate than a headline that states facts and draws attention to a serious community problem. I think cast4 said it perfectly. Heroin does not discriminate based on skin color, income, or social status. It kills individuals, destroys families and hurts everyone around it. Exposing the problem is hopefully an important step in addressing it.
Stumpy Pepys January 07, 2013 at 10:37 PM
The story is, sadly, news. I have no issue with you including it on your site. On the other hand, your headline is out of line and your response to DS is just plain dumb. Yeah, the drug crime is more inappropriate than heroin. I don't think anyone would argue that. Does that make it OK to make light of the situation by having a very snarky headline? Applying your logic, "what we did was wrong, but it is OK because the situation involving this young man was worse."
Pat Campbell January 08, 2013 at 01:03 AM
Bob -- instead of defending your right to publish, why not consider the intent of the complaints? This community needs to be a bit mroe caring and a bit less callous when it comes to crimes associated with drug-seeking behavior or addictions. Yes -- it's not rare -- but it is also not light fare. Your headline was wrong. Your approach was dismissive. Write what you want, but perhaps you might learn from the comments about the (un)intended consequences of Santa vs. Police visit.
TheTruthHurts January 08, 2013 at 02:46 AM
As I said in my initial post, unfortunately this constitutes news on a site like this one. I accept that, even though I question the value and the intent. My real issue is with the ridiculous headline that makes light of a tragic situation. It doesn't matter to me whether this is a suburban kid who lives blocks from me or a poor inner city kid in Norristown or Philadelphia. Addiction is sad and davastating, for the addict, for the addict's family, and in some cases for the addict's community. There is nothing comic in it, at all. If you want to do your job, report the facts, and leave the callous attempts at humor for your own time.
CalbernDontLie January 08, 2013 at 10:53 AM
I agree. Also why is half the story missing? Why were these people called to his house? Sort of seems like the busted into a private residence.
CalbernDontLie January 08, 2013 at 10:59 AM
Bob just wants clicks on the site and seems to like starting flame wars like this with a stupid headline. The kid needs help not the law and Internet news screwing him up even more.
CalbernDontLie January 08, 2013 at 11:02 AM
M Thomson January 08, 2013 at 04:26 PM
When I first leaned about TE Patch I was pleasd to find a site where I could keep up with local news and events, especially when traveling. Since that time I have watched the Patch degenerate into tabloid-esque articles, sensational ( and in this case, not very funny) headlines, and a regurgitation of the police blotter with a witch-hunt mentality. Addiction is a brain ailment, not a moral lapse. One in four families in the US has a member battling this disease. For Patch to infer that the 911 call placed to save this young man's life was a threat to public safety is unconscionable. Do the EMT's not take similar risks when rescuing a car crash victim or assisting an individual suffering a heart attack? Yes, as readers we want to hear the good and the bad news. But we also want compassion and constructive, community building input. My heart goes out to this young man and his family -- for the battle they all face and for this very insensitive treatment. I am now A Former Patch Reader.


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