‘They’re the adults in the situation,’ Neighbors react to York County couple charged in teens deaths

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WINDSOR TOWNSHIP, YORK COUNTY, Pa. -- Two York County parents face involuntary manslaughter charges for providing alcohol to two teens who died in a crash after leaving their home.

No matter what some think about supervised teen drinking, the law says the adults who served the alcohol need to be held accountable.

York County chief deputy prosecutor Tim Barker said, "The course of conduct, the pattern of behavior, this is basically the safe house for minors to consume alcohol."

All is quiet at the Windsor Township house in York County on a Friday afternoon, but court documents state that what happened here nearly a year ago, led to the death of two-teenage boys.

"Before they drove away, the defendants were aware that these minors consumed the alcohol, and those factors when you put them together," Barker said.

Neighbor Michelle Highsmith said, "If the parents chose, being that it is their house, that they chose to do that themselves, that is their own free choice, but at the same time be smart and don't let the kids have their keys."

The investigation shows that didn't happen at Stephen and Jodie Tierney's house. The couple now charged in the deaths of Red Lion High School football players Stone Hill and Nicholas Mankin.

"There are different record checks, there are different photographs to obtain, different social media aspects to obtain, so it's a very lengthy, intense and thorough investigation," Barker said.

The evidence includes posts made to Snapchat and Instagram showing minors drinking at the Tierney's home, as well as a post made by Jodie Tierney herself, that boys who did landscaping around her house could be paid in food and drinks.

"They should have been more aware of what was going on around them, being that they're the adults in the situation. They should understand the fact that they are kids, and that if they do have alcohol, they should be even more protective, and even more aware of what's going on around their children," Highsmith said.

It's why the York County couple faces charges of not only providing alcohol, but endangering the welfare of children, corruption of minors, and involuntary manslaughter.

"When you allow a minor under your care, under your watch, to engage in conduct that is potentially harmful, and illegal, you're responsible for what happens to them," Barker said.

"You are assuming the responsibility then for what happens to them afterwards, and if they die, you have assumed the responsibility for their death," Barker added.

Stephen Tierney criminal complaint.

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