A Carbon County couple faces drug and corruption of minors charges after police saw social media posts of drug use in their Nesquehoning home while children were present.
Abel K. Adams, whose age is unknown, of 92 Rhume St., is charged with two counts each of unlawful possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia; corruption of minors, and endangering the welfare of children.
Sharon R. Helmer, 34, same address, faces the same charges.
Neither had been arrested as of late Thursday.
According to an affidavit of probable cause filed Thursday by borough Police Chief Sean Smith with District Judge Casimir Kosciolek of Lansford, here's how it unfolded:
On July 19, Smith received a complaint from the children's' father, Jason Helmer, that Sharon Helmer, his former wife, had met Adams online and begun a relationship with him. Helmer said he believed Adams was born in Hawaii and lived and worked in Nevada. The day before, Helmer said he learned that Adams had been making videos and taking pictures of himself on social networking sites Facebook and Instagram. Helmer said he saw five videos of Adams in his ex-wife's house, where his 6-year-old son and 10-year-old daughter live, between July 1 and July 19.
There also pictures that showed Adams lighting and smoking what appeared to be marijuana in a bong. there were also pictures of Adams on the porch smoking what appears to be marijuana in a bowl, bong, and blunts or joints.
Smith saw captions with the pictures that said "Smoking weed does not make me a bad person just like going to church does not make you a good person!"
Smith also saw several different pictures of plastic bags filled with green vegetable matter inside the house, which smith knew from previous calls.
He also saw pictures and with captions of Adams making marijuana cookies in the house, one of two unknown girls, about 5 to 10 years old, with glass bowls filled with suspected marijuana in their mouths.
On July 20, Helmer came to the Nesquehoning police station to show Smith a picture Adams had posted on Facebook at 4:20 a.m. The picture showed Adams smoking a bowl of marijuana in the house, where the children were, and a screen shot of his phone showing the 4:20 a.m. time.
Marijuana proponents celebrate April 20, or 4/20, as "weed day." Its origins are unknown.
Helmer also showed Smith a July 17 video that showed Adams standing on the front porch what appears to be a marijuana joint. Smith could hear the front door opening and a boy saying "Mom, what is that?" the actions indicated to Smith that the child was asking what Adams was smoking, and that the child's mother, Sharon Helmer, was present at the time. Jason Helmer identified the voice as that of his son.
There were also several pictures of Sharon Helmer's truck, which Adams has access to.
At 3:10 p.m. Sunday, July 20, Agent Charles Horwath of the Carbon County Drug Task Force, and Smith executed a search warrant for the house and truck. the seized several items that were also within access of the children, including a pink and black bag found in the living room, which contained pipes, bowls, a container of marijuana, a plastic bag containing green vegetable matter, rolling papers, cigar blunts with burned marijuana residue in them.
The children were in the living room while the search was conducted.
Also, a bong was found on top of a dresser in the master bedroom, to which the door was open making the room accessible to anyone.
Both Adams and Helmer waived their Miranda rights and gave verbal and written statements.
Adams admitted the drugs and paraphernalia were his and that he smoked weed in the house, but only when the children were not there.
Adams admitted the children were in the house when the drugs and paraphernalia were seized, and that they did have access to it. He also admitted to taking pictures of himself smoking weed and that he posted them on social networking sites, and to making and eating marijuana cookies, and said Sharon Helmer knew about them and had taught him how to make them.
Sharon Helmer said Adams had been living with her since March, and she knew he smoked marijuana in the house and took pictures of himself using drugs.
She said the children were never in the house while he was doing that, but admitted that the drugs and paraphernalia seized were in an area to which they had access.
She also admitted to helping Adams make marijuana cookies and that she had eaten one, but said she never smoked the drug.