WILKES-BARRE — The co-owner of a Habitat for Humanity home that has been surrounded by controversy has been granted probation.
John Simpson, 46, of Wilkes-Barre, had been serving a Luzerne County prison sentence on drug charges.
County Judge David W. Lupas on Monday approved Simpson’s request to be released from prison, and court documents listed his home address as 171 Stanton St., the Habitat house he and wife Tawana moved into nearly five years ago.
Officials with Wyoming Valley Habitat for Humanity for Humanity last month initiated foreclosure proceedings against the Simpsons, saying they had not paid their mortgage in more than 13 months and owed the organization $48,907 in principal, escrow and late fees as of June 1.
The 1,700-square-foot building is a former doctor’s office which was donated for renovation by Dr. and Mrs. Eugene Pelczar.
The Simpsons and their home made headlines last summer after neighbors complained the property was being rented out to multiple tenants.
Habitat officials have said they cannot comment on the case. Efforts to reach the Simpsons were unsuccessful Tuesday.
According to court documents, the two cases against John Simpson were:
• On Oct. 3, 2011, he sold heroin to a confidential informant on Blackman Street in Wilkes-Barre, police said.
• On Aug. 3, 2012, he sold heroin to another confidential informant in a vehicle after they met up near Public Square.
Simpson was sentenced last year to spend one year less one day to two years less two days in county prison.