A Bradford man was convicted at trial Tuesday in McKean County Court on charges involving drug crimes and running from police from an incident in 2020.
James Nitsos, 36, was wanted by state parole on Dec. 18, 2020, when he was observed within the City of Bradford by a resident, who notified police of his whereabouts, according to District Attorney Stephanie Vettenburg-Shaffer.
According to the criminal complaint at the time of his arrest, Nitsos was spotted walking on Main Street. Former City of Bradford Police Officer (and current State Trooper) Richard Obermeyer responded and attempted to make contact with Nitsos, but Nitsos ignored him and took off on foot, with Obermeyer giving chase.
Nitsos turned and ran south on Festival Way toward St. Bernard Church, and the officer started to chase him, the complaint stated.
According to court records, the officer chased Nitsos along the west side of the church, then in front of the Comfort Inn. Another officer arrived in a patrol car with the emergency lights and siren activated. The second officer drove in front of Nitsos, then exited the car and started giving Nitsos verbal commands.
Nitsos continued to refuse to obey orders, and, as he started to reach for a plastic bag with items inside that was on the ground, officers took him to the ground and took him into custody, the complaint indicated.
According to court records, officers took several plastic bags containing white prescription pills from Nitsos’ pants pocket. Also, they took a black fanny pack he was wearing that contained the following: small plastic baggies containing suspected methamphetamine, 17 yellow prescription containers of 8 mg buprenorphine/naloxone/sublingual film, three Visa cards belonging to other people, a driver’s license, someone else’s medical marijuana card, 14.4 grams of meth and a digital scale with a white powder on it.
At trial, Nitsos was convicted of flight to avoid apprehension, two counts of possession with intent to deliver methamphetamine and cocaine, one count of possession with intent to deliver a counterfeit controlled substance, which was etizolam made to look like Xanax; conspiracy at possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, and possession of a controlled substance and possession of paraphernalia.
The case was investigated by Obermeyer and City Officer Shaun McDonald and was prosecuted by District Attorney Stephanie L. Vettenburg-Shaffer. Nitsos was represented by attorney Jay Carr.
A date has not been set for sentencing. Nitsos is incarcerated at the McKean County Jail.