Two men working at Air Force Reserve base face drug charges

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A pair of civilian roofing contractors face drug charges after police say they attempted to re-enter the Air Force Reserve base in Moon earlier this month with a pipe and empty bags that had contained pot.

Emil Provident, 48, of Whitehall, and Robert McGrail, 37, of North Versailles, were returning Jan. 7 to the base when a guard at the 911th Airlift Wing detected the smell of marijuana coming from their van, according to a criminal complaint.

Both are charged with misdemeanors. Mr. Provident is charged with with possession of drug paraphernalia, and Mr. McGrail with marijuana possession. Both received summons to appear in court.

When the vehicle was searched, police found a green metal pipe, which Mr. Provident claimed as his, from the center console of the van, according to the complaint. He took field sobriety tests but was found not to be impaired, Moon police Chief Leo McCarthy said.

Police also found two clear sandwich bags that were empty but also smelled like pot. Mr. McGrail -- and another contractor who was questioned but not charged -- smelled of marijuana, too, at which point police told them to hand over any more pot, if they had it.

Mr. McGrail took a joint from his pocket and handed it to police, according to the complaint. He and the other contractor told police they had been smoking pot during their lunch break.

Chief McCarthy said the case is interesting because these contractors knew that on a military reservation, they would be scrutinized upon entrance.

"They come on the base knowing they're going to be confronted," Chief McCarthy said. "It just was really a dumb idea."

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Molly Born: mborn@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1944 or on Twitter @borntolede.


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