Crystal Fenstermaker, 39, of 317 E. Abbott St. and Deborrah Wood, 18, of 317 E. Abbott St., both of Lansford, face charges from an incident which took place at 1:30 p.m. Sept. 12 at 328 E. Abbott St. Charges of false alarms to agencies of public safety, criminal conspiracy, unsworn falsification to authorities, two counts of false reports to law enforcement authorities against both women were filed by Officer Jason A. Helmer. In addition, Fenstermaker is charged with criminal solicitation.
According to an affidavit of probable cause, here's what happened:
The Carbon County 911 center received a call from Fenstermaker that a blue sedan had struck her daughter, injuring her, and that the car had been driven away. An ambulance was requested to respond.
Upon arrival, Helmer spoke with the victim, identified as Wood. She was sitting on the street, unable to get up and complaining of leg pain.
Wood told police she had walked up the street to talk with Shawn Meitzler, who was in a vehicle parked in front of 328 E. Abbott St. Wood said there were ongoing problems she wanted to talk to him about.
Wood told police that when she walked up to the vehicle, Meitzler saw her and put the vehicle in reverse, striking her in the leg with the rear bumper/taillight, knocking her to the ground.
Fenstermaker was also present, and said she was sitting on the porch at 317 E. Abbott and saw Meitzler put the vehicle in reverse and back into Wood, causing her to fly back and hit the ground.
Meitzler was stopped by Nesquehoning police in the parking lot of Redner's Market. Helmer went there and spoke with Meitzler, who admitted to being in the area but denied hitting anyone.
Upon investigating the rear bumper area of Meitzler's vehicle, Helmer saw that it was dusty and there was no evidence of it coming into contact with anybody or anything.
Meitzler gave him the names of two witnesses who were on the front porch of 328 E. Abbott St. at the time of the alleged incident. Helmer interviewed them, and they told him Meitzler never put the vehicle in reverse, nor did he strike Wood. One of the witnesses also reported that she heard Wood ask Fenstermaker what she should do, and that Fenstermaker told her to go back up the street, lie on the ground and cry.
Written statements were obtained and signed by Wood and Fenstermaker, relating the same details they told Helmer at the scene.
On Sept. 16, Helmer received information from a third witness, a neighbor of Fenstermaker's, who said that Wood was walking up to Meitzler's vehicle, but that he drove away before she even got close to it.
The witness said Wood began walking back home to 317 E. Abbott St., when Fenstermaker came outside and told her to go sit in the street, hold her knee and start crying.
Fenstermaker then stated that everyone was getting paid back because she was being forced to move out.
On Oct. 15, while speaking with Fenstermaker and Wood outside their home, both stated that all of the information they gave on Sept. 10 was correct and that their written statements were true.