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Three detained in Tamaqua traffic stop

A traffic stop in Tamaqua on Nov. 10 turned out to be unlucky for four people.

An officer was monitoring traffic at 4:45 p.m. when the LPR camera registered a black Kia, which was traveling west on Route 209, as having an expired registration. The officer stopped the Kia, which had four occupants.

The driver initially gave the name of Lyle Fought and admitted he didn’t have a valid driver’s license. The front seat passenger, Heather Moser, 26, of Weissport, said the Kia was hers but couldn’t produce a registration card.

A records check indicated an outstanding warrant for Moser, issued by Montour County officials. The information on Fought made it clear the driver was not who he claimed to be.

As the officer was looking for information on the other two passengers the driver bolted from the car and ran south, going into a yard on Hazle Street. Once backup officers arrived, they looked for the driver with no success.

Moser was taken into custody and later transferred to officers with the Montour County Sheriff’s office.

In the meantime, a second passenger was identified as Erin Fisher, who had an arrest warrant issued by Lansford police. She was transferred to their custody.

The third passenger wasn’t wanted by police and was set free.

None of the passengers knew the driver’s real name, saying they only knew him as “Vic.”

Officers were later able to identify him as Tyler Strawdinger, 25, of the 200 block of West Phillips Street, Coaldale, with an outstanding warrant from Carbon County.

Later that day, at 8:33 p.m., Strawdinger came back to Tamaqua, this time as a passenger in a gray Ford Escape. He was picked up and transferred to the custody of Carbon County officials due to the warrant.

Tamaqua police charged him with resisting arrest, escape, flight to avoid apprehension, providing false identification to police, possession of drug paraphernalia, driving without registration, driving with a suspended license and driving without a license.

A second passenger, Joseph Cooper, 33, of Tamaqua, was wanted on a warrant issued by Schuylkill County. He was taken directly to the Schuylkill County prison in Pottsville.