York County CYF rally called off as negotiations for new contract begin

Witness: Tierney said 'she does what she wants - it's her rules'

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch

Dylan Gurreri testified Wednesday afternoon that at some point prior to Stone Hill and Nick Mankin dying in a fiery alcohol-fueled crash, he overheard Jodie Tierney's husband tell her "it has to stop."

He's the second person to make that claim.

The father of another teen who hung out at the Tierney home has previously testified he heard also heard Stephen D. Tierney say much the same thing to Jodie Tierney. He said he heard it a couple hours before the crash, on June 16, 2015, when he picked up his son, who was sick from alcohol consumption and unresponsive at the Tierney home.

Chief deputy prosecutor Tim Barker on Wednesday asked the 19-year-old Gurreri whether Jodie Tierney responded to her husband, prompting defense attorney Douglas Bare to repeatedly object. He was overruled, and the teen answered.

"She pretty much told him she does what she wants — it's her rules," Gurreri told jurors.

Red Lion students (from left) Desaree Ware; 2014 graduate Sierra Howard; Cheyenne Waltemire; 2015 graduate Cody Stern; and junior Lindsay Wilhelm gather around a roadside memorial at the base of a utility pole on Slab Road for Stone Hill, 17, and Nicholas Mankin, 16, the day after the two Red Lion students died in a fiery crash there on Tuesday, June 16, 2015.
(Dawn Sagert photo)

Jodie Tierney, 46, of 80 Percheron Drive in Windsor Township, is on trial in York County Court, accused of allowing minors to drink in her home, including the two who died in a DUI crash after leaving her house. Testimony indicates she even bought the group alcohol on three occasions.

Gurreri told jurors he went to the Tierney home nearly every weekend and that he and other teens drank alcohol "almost every time" they were there without fear of getting in trouble.

He said their parties were loud, that teens drank so much they vomited and that he once body-slammed another teen for repeatedly touching a girl.

An only child: Also testifying Wednesday was Stone's mother.

Tina Marie Hill started out by telling jurors that Stone was her only child. She said he played football and baseball and also wrestled, and he hoped to play college football after graduating from Red Lion Area High School.

Stone, 17, and Nick, 16, were killed when Stone's Toyota 4Runner crashed and burned on Slab Road in Lower Chanceford Township about 7 p.m. June 16, 2015. They were just two minutes from the Hill home, Tina Hill testified.

The boys, who would have been high-school seniors on the varsity football team, were on their way to Stone's house from Jodie Tierney's home, according to testimony, and were friends with Tierney's high-school-age son.

Barker and co-prosecutor Sarah Buhite allege Jodie Tierney repeatedly allowed her older son and his friends to drink at her home, and that there were no rules or repercussions.

'Nervous wreck': Tina Hill told jurors Jodie Tierney came to her home the day after Stone and Nick were killed.

"She showed up at our house, said she was a nervous wreck," Tina Hill recalled. "We asked her what happened that day."

According to Tina Hill, the defendant recounted that the teens were "happy and laughing," but that she didn't know what they did after they left her home.

Stone Hill, left, and Nicholas Mankin.

On cross-examination, defense attorney Bare asked Tina Hill whether anyone had told her the boys were headed to Nick's house before going to Stone's home.

She confirmed that one person gave her that account — Jodie Tierney herself. There is no other testimony or evidence at this point in trial to suggest the teens went to Nick's house, and Nick's mother testified he didn't come home that evening.

Tina Hill said Tierney never mentioned anything about the youths drinking alcohol at her home that day or any other time

Second incident: Jodie Tierney also failed to mention that another teen drank himself sick in her home just a few hours before the fatal crash, according to Stone's mother.

Tina Hill said she was unaware Stone drank alcohol and said that when he had friends over, she and her husband always locked up their alcohol.

"We removed the temptation," she said.

Jodie Tierney

She also told jurors if she'd have known her son was drinking at the Tierney home, there would have been repercussions.

"He not only would have had his (car) keys pulled, he would not have been allowed to return there," she said.

2nd mom takes stand: Also testifying Wednesday morning was Tammy Heffner, mother of 20-year-old Cody Heffner, who was a member of that group of friends and who spent hours testifying on the witness stand Tuesday.

Tammy Heffner said her son was at the Tierney home "most weekends," and that she was unaware teens were drinking there, including Cody.

"He would've been in a lot of trouble" if she'd have known, Tammy Heffner said, adding he would have been grounded "for quite a long time."

Like Tina Hill, Tammy Heffner told jurors she never provided alcohol to the teens.

'Sick feeling': While on the stand, Tina Hill said she used the "find my phone" function on her iPhone to track the progress of Stone's phone and knew he should be home just after 7 p.m.

She was walking upstairs from doing laundry in her basement when the power went out.

"I got a sick feeling," she said. She told her husband that something was wrong, and that they needed to go Slab Road, where Stone's iPhone indicated he was stopped.

From left, Red Lion-area residents Dylan Gurreri, Cody Stern and Cody Heffner gather around a memorial built at the base of a utility pole on Slab Road for their friends and classmates Stone Hill, 17, of Delta, and Nicholas Mankin, 16, of Felton, the day after the two Red Lion students died in a fiery crash.
(Dawn J. Sagert photo - dsagert@yorkdispatch.com)

The Hills saw smoke billowing in the air from the burning SUV, and Tina Hill said at first her husband ran back to the stopped traffic, hoping Stone was there.

"But I knew it was him," she said.

Guilty plea: Stephen D. Tierney, 46, pleaded guilty Monday to corruption of minors and furnishing alcohol to minors. He had been scheduled to stand trial with his wife.

His charges of involuntary manslaughter and child endangerment will be dropped at his sentencing, according to the judge. That is set for Aug. 21.

Stephen Tierney

Stephen Tierney's guilty plea was not for the deaths of Stone and Nick — it was for allowing the group of teens to drink at his home.

Jodie Tierney remains free on bail, charged with two counts each of involuntary manslaughter and child endangerment, and one count each of furnishing alcohol to minors and corruption of minors.

Trial resumes Thursday morning with more prosecution testimony.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.

Editor's note: This article has been updated to correct information about when Dylan Gurreri allegedly overheard a conversation between Stephen and Jodie Tierney.