Tri-County Report for March, 11th 2014
A couple of missing hikers in Lawrence County are safe. The two were reported missing in McConnells Mill State Park Monday along Slippery Rock Creek. A number of fire departments searched for the man and a woman for about three hours before finding them and bringing them out.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court will hear oral arguments Wednesday in an appeal of the order to retry a teenage murder suspect. It's now been five years since the death of 26 year old Kenzie Marie Houk and her unborn baby. Attorneys for her accused killer, Jordan Brown, and from the state Attorney General's office will address the state's highest court over whether Brown should be retried as a juvenile in Lawrence County Court. In April of 2012 Brown was found responsible for the murder, however Pennsylvania Commonweath Court reversed the ruling last year.
A group of lawmakers and casino owners are discussing ways to help Pennsylvanians with gambling problems. The state expanded gambling last year to allow games of chance in taverns, and many fear it could lead to problems. Concerned parties gathered at a House Gaming Oversight Committee meeting yesterday to talk about ways to prevent gambling problems in the state. For more information, visit: www.paproblemgambling.com.
A Connoquenessing Township man has pleaded guilty to causing a fatal vehicle crash on his way home from a methadone clinic over a year ago. 26 year old Justin Enslen, will be sentenced next week for the February 2013 collision that killed a 52-year-old Oakland Township man. Court records indicate Enslen was high on several different drugs including herion, when he crossed the center line on Route 68 in front of the Connoquenessing Elementary School hitting a vehicle head-on. Enslen pleaded guilty to homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence.
A Hempfield Township couple is facing charges after leaving their son home alone while they broke into cars in Greensburg. Police say Jesse and Nicole Brown were arrested yesterday morning after being spotted entering a vehicle on Stark Avenue. The pair tried to flee from officers but were taken into custody after a brief chase. Jesse Brown confessed to the crime saying did it because he owes someone money. The couple was arraigned yesterday on multiple charges including child endangerment and criminal conspiracy.
State Police in Mercer County are investigating damage done at Parklwan Cemetery in Green Township. Accoding to police 5 tombstones were damaged along with several Lighted Grave Markers. Total value was estimated at nearly three thousand dollars. Police said the incidents took place between the 1th and 15th of February. Anyone with information is asked to call state police in Mercer County.
The Lawrence County Comissioners have announced they will be holding their weekly public meeting on Tuesday, March 18th, at the Ellport Borough building on Burns Avenue in Ellwood City at noon, The Commissioners throughout 2014 plan to conduct on public meeting every month at each of the County's ten borough buildings.
The manager of several Primanti Brothers locations is facing charges after allegedly stealing more than 30-thousand dollars from the restaurants. Police say Ben Bartilson sent a text message to his boss last month saying he had stolen the money and then gambled it away at a casino. Bartilson, who was arrested last week for the crime, was the operations manager at the Primanti's locations in North Versailles, Robinson, Moon and Pleasant Hills.
Officials are confirming that additional remains have been recovered from the Chevron well site in Dunkard Township. After safety inspections were completed last week, the Greene County coroner’s office and forensic anthropologists went to the well pad and recovered additional remains, believed to be those of Ian McKee, an employee who was working at the site when the well exploded last month. McKee had been unaccounted for since the explosion.
A former official at the Lawrence County Career and Technical Center has been accused of stealing school funds. According to the Ellwood City Ledger 36 year old Chastity Williams. , of West State Street, Union Township, was charged Friday with theft by unlawful taking, theft by deception and receiving stolen property. Williams was the former assistant business manager of the Center. Williams is accused of taking more than $90,000 in unapproved overtime payments, and that she gave herself higher-than approved overtime rates. She was employed from March, 2010 until August of 2013.
A federal judge has temporarily ordered state officials not to enforce a law that bars corporations and unions from contributing to independent political committees. U.S. District Judge William Caldwell on Monday granted a preliminary injunction requested by a Washington-based super PAC that plans to raise money to help elect Democrats to Pennsylvania's Republican-controlled Legislature this year. The General Majority PAC recently sued the state on grounds that its laws unconstitutionally prohibit super PACs, which can raise and spend unlimited funds for candidates. Lawyers for both sides are negotiating a prospective out-of-court settlement.
The manager of Elliot Used Car Sales in Center Township in Butler County is facing theft by Deception charges. State Police in Butler County report 32 year old Michael King of Chicora is accused of failing to submit titles, taxes and fee's for car sales from four individuals. King is accused of keeping all the money wich should have been sent to PennDot. Police said the alleged thefts occured between March of 2009 till September of last year. The investigation is continuing.
The Tri-County Report for March, 11th 2014