Larry A. Hicks pleaded guilty today to one felony count of “Making A Materially False Written Statement,” and will receive four years probation for providing incorrect information on an application to purchase a handgun. As part of his plea agreement with prosecutors, Hicks surrendered his handgun and will have all other charges filed against him dismissed.

Hicks was represented in the case by the Beaver County Public Defenders Office.

County Officials Investigating Sheriff’s Handling Of Friendship Ridge Incident
Serious Questions About Sheriff David’s Account Of Events At Friendship Ridge
Woman At Friendship Ridge Claims Deputies Never Even Interviewed Her
District Attorney Drops Charges After Investigation Into Friendship Ridge Incident
District Attorney: This Case Has Almost Reached Mythical Proportions
Judge: Man To Stand Trial Following Alleged Friendship Ridge Incident
Friendship Ridge Suspect Out Of Jail After Community Donates Bail Money
District Attorney’s Office Files 11 New Charges Against Friendship Ridge Suspect
Union Takes A Stand Against Sheriff David After Clerk Files Grievance
District Attorney Dispels Rumors Circulating About Clerk In Sheriff’s Office
Man To Stand Trial For Lying On Concealed Carry Permit & Gun Applications
Clerk In Sheriff’s Office Restored To Her Position Following Hearing
Sheriff’s Deputy May Soon Be Criminally Charged Over Sworn Statements
Sheriff’s Deputy Abandons Post – Follows Beaver Countian Taking Photographs


John Paul
John Paul is the founder of the Beaver Countian. He reports full-time for the site, specializing in investigative journalism with an emphasis on public corruption.


  1. It would have been interesting if the 3 Hicks cases would have been brought before the Court or a Beaver County Jury for decisions. Between selective prosecution and notification issues (in the false statement to obtain gun permit case) and the problems with Mr. Hick’s arrest at Friendship Ridge (in the carrying without permit case) , there was a lot of ammunition to fire at the District Attorney’s cases. Pun intended.

    It would have also been interesting to have a Beaver County Jury look at the form for gun purchase (in the case Mr. Hicks plead on) and make a decision as to whether there was any criminal intent to give false information by Mr. Hicks or whether there should be any conviction when Mr. Hicks cleared all of the background checks through the State before being issued a gun permit or being sold a firearm.

    It would also have been interesting to have the Court rule on whether all of the evidence against Mr. Hicks was inadmissible as “fruit of the poisonous tree” based upon the initial arrest by the Sheriff’s Department at Friendship Ridge – which arrest led to the Beaver County Detective Bureau’s investigations leading to the filing of the 2nd and 3rd cases.

    • Attorney Benyo (if this is in fact you)

      Are you his defense attorney? Why didn’t you push for a jury trial if you were/are his counsel?

      Had this been a proof positive case of illegal search it should have/would have been an open and shut case, right? Wouldn’t that have opened a new motion/suit for false accusations, and made asses of not only the prosecution, but the magistrate too; thus bringing to the forefront the speculated corruption that lies within our county judicial system?

      Thanks in advance for your response.

      • To answer some of the questions presented.

        I represented Mr. Hicks on a pro bono basis. I did not receive any compensation for representing Mr. Hicks through his 3 Preliminary Hearings. Mr. Hicks was never asked for any The Hicks Legal Defense Fund collected a small amount of donations that went entirely for Mr. Hick’s bail.

        After the Preliminary Hearing in the 3rd case, Mr. Hicks advised me that he believed the cases should have been dismissed and he did not want to go to Court anymore. Mr. Hicks then advised me he was going to the Public Defender for representation. Once the Public Defender advised me that Mr. Hicks had applied and was accepted for representation, I withdrew from his cases as he requested.

        The Public Defender handled Mr. Hicks cases and the Plea Bargain was reached for probation. The Public Defender representing Mr. Hicks is an experienced criminal defense attorney and with the Plea Bargain there was a guarantee that Mr. Hicks would have 2 cases dismissed and receive probation on the 3rd.

        I believe that good cause for suppression of all the evidence existed based upon the illegal stop and detention of Mr. Hicks at Friendship Ridge. Nothing would have been known of Mr. Hicks to cause an investigation by the Beaver County Detectives but for the interaction between the Sheriff’s Deputies and Mr. Hicks at Friendship Ridge – which charges were all dismissed by the District Attorney’s Office prior to the Preliminary Hearing. This decision would have been up to the Court to make if presented with Pre-Trial Motion For Suppression of Evidence.

  2. So, Mr. Hicks makes a false statement on a background check and it goes to court, but a Sheriff Deputy can make a false statement on a statement of charges, and nothing happens? WTF District Attorney! This is bullshit.

  3. Here we go again. Hicks was tried and sentenced already. OK. But wheh is deputy Fratangeli and the sheriff going to be tried ? The D.A. did a good job with Hicks but won’t move on the crime that the deputy commited. Why not ? The sheriff got a continuance for his court date which was expected. This could go on for a long time. B.C. politics. Perhaps judge Bozza from Erie county should hear the case ! WHY HASN”T FRATANGELI BEEN CHARGED YET? ENOUGH IS ENOUGH !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Wasn’t there supposed to be a defense fund set up for Hick’s? I swear I read it on this very site in thecomments section on an earlier article about Hicks. Where’s that going and why did Hicks end up with a public defender?

  5. @gvbenyo: The Hicks Legal Defense Fund had a purpose that was served. Many of us, contributors included, don’t even know the man personally. Hicks is a symbol of mistreatment and exploitation. He apparently is not a choir boy, and his application was incorrect, but he represents how a person can be abused by unaccountable people in power. Although I have no proof, I cannot personally believe that Fratangeli lied on a report for the first time. It would be interesting to review his past reports and the cases that might be compromised. And if Sheriff David influenced him to do so, that is even worse. Fratangeli would then be a stooge, if such is true. I don’t see an end game in this governmental chess match, but at least there might be some hesitation now in the Sheriff’s department, before they do it again. And, that hesitation is well worth the expense required to impose it, because they won’t do it themselves. If they, and some local politicians, hesitate to enter the next election because of the scrutiny, all of this will have been worth it.

    • Raven I do enjoy reading your input most of the time but your last proves that hypocracy knows no boundaries.
      ” He apparently is not a choir boy, and his application was incorrect, but he represents how a person can be abused by unaccountable people in power”
      Hicks was a convicted criminal who lied on an application to purchase a handgun. That is a felony. And he was very well aware of what he was doing. Beaver County has one of the lowest rates of conviction so the outcome of this case is not surprising to me in the least bit. This is his 2nd felony. And my friend I am all about second chances. When this individual broke the law years back he had a choice to make, do I accept my punishment, move on and become a productive member of society or do I continue upon the path I’ve chosen and continue breaking the law. And he chose #2. You and a few others that comment on this site have such a dislike for the sheriff that you lose sight of the facts. If you want the sheriff gone, vote him out. The way I see it that’s the only way. He is facing 11 misdemeanors and Most of them will get dropped. Lol who knows, maybe all of them. But you as we’ll as me know he’ll get ARD, finish his term and most likely get elected again IF he runs again. You said it yourself. I don’t who you are but you seem to have level of integrity and your opinions are, for the most part, respected by your fellow Countians. You, among others call the Sheriff a criminal. And unless a court of law designates him one, he is not, regardless of what people think they know. Because as we all acknowledge, it’s not what you know but what you can prove. (I want to add that I am not about to debate the Sheriffs guilt) My point is dont jeopardize your integrity by supporting a criminal to further your agenda. That is an all to familiar path that people have chosen lately. And in my opinion the reason we as a society are in the predicament we are in Locally, Nationally, and Globally.

  6. I accept part of what you say, and I’ll think about it. If I am wrong, I’ll retract that part(s). My purpose was to focus on the falsifications surrounding his arrest, regardless of his guilt or background. I don’t think the Sheriff matter is a driving force in my comments, but I’ll be careful to avoid it after this.

  7. @SoTrue: I have reread what I said, and I stand by it. You are misinterpreting the intent of my comments. If you reread your analysis, you will see that you are committing the error in reasoning that you accuse me of. You have filled the body of your argument with one topic, then switched to a premise that does not follow from it. I like some of what you say, but you are a little too zealous in making it fit in unrelated matters. Lies hurt Hicks, apart from who he is or what he has done. Even criminals don’t need a bum rap.



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