Parents of slain girl arrested on drug charges
They were allegedly selling heroin and meth
BULLHEAD CITY (AP) - The mother and stepfather of an 8-year-old girl who was killed last month have been arrested on drug charges, police in the northwestern Arizona community of Bullhead City said.
A police SWAT team arrested Tania Ann Grogan, 29, and her husband, Ralph Pat Leroy Folster III, 28, at their home on Wednesday evening.
A 26-year-old family friend, Justin James Rector, has pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder, kidnapping, child abuse and abandonment of a body in the death of Isabella "Bella" Grogan-Cannella. He was arrested shortly after the girl's family reported her missing on Sept. 2.
Isabella's body was discovered not far from her home in Bullhead City. Medical examiners determined that she had been strangled.
Police said late Wednesday they learned last month that Grogan and Folster were selling heroin and methamphetamine.
Officers said that when they went to arrest the couple, Grogan surrendered immediately, but Folster refused to come out of the home. After a two-hour standoff with officers, he climbed into the attic of the home and tried to get into an attached second home. He eventually came outside and surrendered.
They were booked into the Mohave County jail on drug sales and possession charges, and Grogan faces an additional charge of manufacturing methamphetamines. It isn't known if they have lawyers, and Mohave County officials were not immediately available Thursday.
A child-endangerment investigation of Grogan is ongoing, police said in a statement. That investigation includes the possibility she supplied meth to Rector, the suspect in her daughter's death.
Rector remains jailed without bond. A status conference in that case is scheduled for Oct. 28.