Man charged with illegal dumping

LISBON — One of the men alleged responsible for illegal dumping in Yellow Creek Township in July 2017 has been charged.

A secret indictment was served to Christopher L. Joy, 34, last known address Danbury Avenue, Wellsville. Joy is charged with complicity to illegal open dumping of solid wastes and complicity to illegal transportation or disposal of hazardous wastes, both unclassified felonies.

On July 5, 2017, the charges claim Joy assisted Timothy A. Patrick committing the offense of illegal open dumping without the authorization of the director of Environmental Protection Agency. Several metal and plastic 55-gallon drums were deposited on the ground at 21584 Sprouse Road in Yellow Creek Township. Additionally, it notes at least three 55-gallon drums were hauled to the property and disposed of on that day.

The penalty for the charges are a possible minimum of fine $10,000 and a maximum fine of $25,000 per count, as well as at least two years in prison, but not more than four years per count.

At the time of the dumping, Columbiana County Sheriff Ray Stone had reported barrels were tossed down over a hill and had begun leaking chemicals over the hillside and into the Rocky Run Creek, which continues into Yellow Creek and then into the Ohio River.

Highlandtown and Wellsville firefighters, as well as East Liverpool’s Hazmat team and the Ohio EPA all arrived at the scene and worked quickly to stop the chemicals from floating down the smaller creeks into the river. Additional booms were set up further down Yellow Creek by Toronto and Irondale firefighters as a precautionary measure.

Highlandtown Fire Chief Tim Roush said at the time the contents of the 26 drums were believed to be petroleum and natural gas based.