Oil City man accused of selling meth held for court

VE-Front-Page
By MARISSA DECHANT
Staff writer

An Oil City man accused of selling methamphetamine to a confidential informant on two separate occasions was held for court Wednesday.

Kent Frantz, 25, appeared before district judge Matthew Kirtland for his preliminary hearing in Venango County Central Court.

District Attorney Shawn White opened proceedings by calling Oil City patrolwoman Regina Deloe to testify about the events of March 28.

Deloe said she was conducting surveillance on Frantz with the use of a confidential informant who was to purchase $100 of methamphetamine from Frantz.

The informant traveled to Frantz’s residence at 29 Martin St., and the two then drove to a Pearl Avenue home.

Frantz took the money and entered the home, but never returned back to the informant, Deloe said.

The informant and police waited for Frantz outside the residence for more than an hour, she said.

Defense counsel Robert Hartley confirmed with Deloe that she never saw a transfer between Frantz and the informant. She added that the informant and his vehicle were searched both before and after the attempted buy, and nothing was found.

White then called Oil City patrolman Cory Ruditis, who discussed a second controlled buy on March 19.

Ruditis and several fellow officers conducted the buy with the same informant, giving him $100 to purchase methamphetamine from Frantz.

The informant traveled to Frantz’s home and exchanged the money for a baggie of suspected methamphetamine contained inside a cigarette pack, Ruditis said.

The substance was later field tested and returned positive results for amphetamines.

Hartley argued a lack of sufficient evidence for charges relating to criminal use of a communication facility.

Kirtland ruled all charges be bound over for further proceedings in the Court of Common Pleas.

Frantz was charged with felony counts of manufacture, delivery or possession with intent to manufacture or deliver, possession of a controlled substance, two counts of conspiracy – manufacture, delivery or possession with intent to manufacture and two counts of criminal use of communication facility.

He was also charged with misdemeanor counts of use/possession of drug paraphernalia and theft by unlawful taking.

He remains in the Venango County jail on $75,000 bail.