CLEARFIELD – Police are looking for a former Clearfield County Emergency Management Agency Director who failed to appear for his preliminary hearing Wednesday at the county jail.
Joshua James Quigley, 39, of Woodland was charged by Lawrence Township police with a felony count of firearms to be carried without a license and several summaries after a traffic stop in October.
A hearing was held in his absence Wednesday with all charges being held to court. A bench warrant was issued for his arrest, according to court documents.
Police say an officer noticed Quigley’s vehicle had a broken head lamp on Oct. 11 and followed it. The vehicle then allegedly began swerving harshly and crossed the double line.
The officer ran the vehicle’s registration and discovered it belonged to Quigley, who has previously been involved with drug incidents. He then decided to conduct a traffic stop on the car in the area of state Route 879 and the Wolf Run traffic light, according to the affidavit.
When the officer approached the car, the driver was identified as Quigley. The problem with the light was a mechanical issue that Quigley was quickly able to fix.
Quigley reportedly said he didn’t have any paperwork for the vehicle or his driver’s license because he explained he keeps that information at home and did not even try to look for it.
Because he was acting nervous, he was asked if there was anything illegal or a weapon in the vehicle. He said there wasn’t, according to the complaint.
After the officer was advised that Quigley’s driver’s license was suspended, he discovered Quigley was wanted on a warrant through Allegheny County. Later it was determined that Allegheny County did not want to extradite him.
A 22-year-old passenger in the vehicle who appeared to be under the influence of a controlled substance was also questioned.
At first he claimed to be under the influence of alcohol, but after the officer advised him he appeared to be under the influence of a controlled substance, he did not fully deny this.
Suspicious of the two, police continued to question them because of their age difference and their story that they were on their way to Wal-Mart to buy shampoo for Quigley’s girlfriend.
The passenger said he was a friend of Quigley’s girlfriend who is also someone police were familiar with due to drug activity.
During their conversation, Quigley continued to state there was nothing in the vehicle but was sitting at an odd angle in the driver’s seat, according to the report.
Because the officer felt both Quigley and the passenger’s behavior was suspicious and their story didn’t make sense, he called for a K-9 unit.
Quigley refused to consent to a search of the vehicle because he said he didn’t trust the police even though his father is a retired police officer.
At one point, Quigley asked if he could make a call and called his attorney.
When the trooper with a K-9 officer arrived, Quigley was removed from the vehicle and searched. Police found an empty holster on his right hip.
Quigley claimed the weapon was in the center console and was not loaded.
The trooper looking in the vehicle found the loaded gun on the driver’s seat. It was reportedly apparent that Quigley had been sitting on it.
Quigley was then taken into custody.
He said he was not aware the gun was loaded but admitted to knowing it was in the vehicle. Quigley stated he was not able to get a valid permit because of previous criminal charges.
It was confirmed by county control that Quigley’s pistol permit expired in 2010.
The K-9 officer alerted to something on the passenger side of the vehicle where police found plastic bags with drug residue.
Officers also found an ATM card, check and other items belonging to a family member. Quigley claimed that he had signed the check to himself after getting permission.
A different family member requested that theft and forgery charges not be pursued against Quigley.