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March 5, 2013

LOCK HAVEN – Fire crews from Clinton. Centre and Lycoming Counties rushed out to battle a two alarm fire at First Quality Tissue in Lock Haven this morning. The fire was reported just after eight a.m. at the plant at 904 Woods Avenue in Castena Township. There’s no word yet as to what started the fire which is under investigation.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

STATE COLLEGE – As a storm system swings our way, just how far north the storm will tracks will determine how much snow our region will receive. Light snow will develop across the Central Mountains late tonight and likely reach parts of the Middle Susquehanna Valley by early Wednesday morning. At this point the National Weather Service says we should remain on the northern edge of the system which will dump heavy snow across southern Pennsylvania. At this time light snow accumulations generally between 1 and 3 inches are forecast in most areas on Wednesday based on the projected track of the low pressure system passing to the south of the region. However if the low takes a more northern track, moderate snowfall amounts are possible. Meanwhile a Winter Storm watch has been issued for Mifflin, Juniata and Perry counties from this evening through Wednesday afternoon. In those counties the National Weather forecast is predicting six inches or more of snow this evening into Wednesday.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

MILTON – A Milton woman was taken to Geisinger Medical Center following a violent car crash in Northumberland County Monday morning. The crash happened just after six a.m. on Route 147 near the intersection with Interstate 80. Police say 37-year-old Beth Mattingly lost control of her car on a curve went off the highway hit some guardrails and flipped the vehicle several times. Police say Mattingly was not wearing a seat belt and had to be cut free of the wreckage. The crash closed down Route 147 for about an hour as crews cleared the scene. A Nursing supervisor at Geisinger says Mattingly was treated and released.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

MIDDLEBURG –A Northumberland County man is now facing an open count of criminal homicide for allegedly killing his grandmother and seriously injuring his grandfather. Joshua Snook of Sunbury was taken before a judge yesterday in Snyder County and now faces the homicide in the stabbing death of his grandmother, 71-year-old Bonnie Jean Snook. Snook faces a total of 24 criminal counts, including aggravated assault, robbery and burglary. Following his hearing Snook was then led to the Snyder County Prison where he’s being held without bail. Snook's wife, Jennifer Snook, has also been charged in the case. State Police say the Snooks went to dale and Bonnier Snooks’ home near Middleburg and tried to steal a gun to murder another man they had been involved in a dispute with at a Northumberland bar on February 16th. That’s when a fight broke out between Dale and Bonnie Snook and Joshua allegedly stabbed his grandmother to death.
(WGRC)

WILLIAMSPORT - A New Berlin man was charged Monday with helping an alleged killer and an accomplice get out of Williamsport shortly after a suspected drug dealer was shot to death in an alley in the 300 block of Susquehanna Street on January 9th. 22-year-old Isaiah Fulton was charged with hindering apprehension and obstructing the administration of law for allegedly aiding gunman 20-year-old Mirad Shabazz, and accomplice 18-year-old Jason Gardner, both of Easton, flee the city to Milton on the night of the fatal shooting. City police allege Shabazz shot to death 21-year-old Terell Littles, a Pennsylvania College of Technology student, of Williamsport, during a drug sale. Fulton and 17-year-old Antonio Carpenter, of Montandon, made arrangements to get Shabazz and Gardner to Milton, where the two spent the night before fleeing to Easton. Fulton remains jailed in the Montour County Prison where he’ also being held on child endangerment and assault charges for allegedly assaulting a 1-year-old girl he supposedly was baby-sitting in mid-August in New Berlin while the mother was at work. The baby girl remains in a comatose state at Geisinger medical Center and may never regain consciousness.
(WGRC)

POTTSVILLE – 40-year-old Edward O'Boyle was drunk the day his sport utility vehicle hit and killed a Mahanoy Area High School teacher, and he must now spend at least 3 1/2 years behind state prison bars because of it, a Schuylkill County judge decided Monday. Schuylkill County President Judge William Baldwin handed down the sentence to O'Boyle. O'Boyle, of Mahanoy City, pleaded guilty January 25th to charges of homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence, DUI, and related counts. O'Boyle admitted to hitting a motorcycle driven by 51-year-old Jeffery Donnelly of Barnsville, September 18th, 2011.  Donnelly died at the scene.
(WGRC)

WILLIAMSPORT – The United States Marshals Service Friday arrested 44-year-old Jackie Reed, in Cogan Station. On November 20, 2012, Reed was arrested by the Pennsylvania State Police in Montoursville. It is alleged Reed assaulted children multiple times at his home. The victims in this case were under the age of 13 at the time of the alleged assaults. Reed faced a list of charges at the time of his arrest but was freed on $75,000 bail. On February 5th, Reed was scheduled to appear for court in Lycoming County but he did not appear for the hearing, resulting in the issuance of an arrest warrant in Lycoming County. Reed was also wanted by several other jurisdictions on outstanding warrants.  The Pennsylvania State Police in Milton held a fraud-related warrant against him. And, the Northumberland County Sheriff’s Office held a probation warrant for Reed, based upon an underlying conviction for fraud and theft. On Friday, U.S. Marshals based in Williamsport identified and located Reed in the 2000 block of St. Michaels Road in Cogan Station. The fugitive was arrested without incident. He was turned over to the Lycoming County Sheriff’s Department and yesterday appeared before Lycoming County Judge Marc Lovecchio in Williamsport. Reed is now jailed without bail.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

BELLEFONTE – A Centre County man pleaded guilty and no contest to over 300 counts of child sexual abuse and child pornography in Centre County Court Monday. District Attorney Stacey Parks-Miller says 42-year-old Jeffery Storms pleaded out before his trial was to start yesterday. Storms is accused on numerous assaults on children over a ten year period beginning in 2001. State Police also found over 130 pictures and over 40 videos containing child pornography on Storms’ personal computer when he was arrested in 2011. Storms is facing a lengthy prison sentenced when he faces sentencing in June.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

STATE COLLEGE - The State College Police Department has filed robbery charges against 41-year-old Rodger Williams, one of three suspects in the January 9, 2013, armed robbery of $950,000 in jewelry from Kranich’s Jewelers in downtown State College. Williams has been in custody in Wake County, North Carolina, since January 28, after he was arrested as he fled the scene of another jewelry store robbery in Cary, North Carolina. Several agencies, including the Cary Police Department, the Philadelphia Police Department and the Philadelphia FBI Violent Crime Task Force, assisted in the investigation which culminated in the charges against Williams.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

STATE COLLEGE – In Centre County, Patton Township police are searching for a suspect in the armed robbery of the Penn State Sub Shop on North Atherton Street on Sunday night. Police described the suspect as a short white male. During the attack, the suspect was wearing dark clothing and had his face partially covered. Police said the robbery happened just after eight p.m. The suspect brandished a handgun and took an undisclosed amount of money.  Anyone with information is asked to contact the Patton Township Police Department at either 234-0273 or (800) 479-0050.
(WGRC)

MONTOURSVILLE – The Federal Sequestration has hit close to home in Lycoming County. Williamsport Regional Airport Authority officials were notified Monday that the airport's air traffic control tower could close due to the federal budget cuts. Mark Murawski, airport authority chairman, tells the Sun Gazette he is not sure when that may happen - if it does come to that - but added that the authority intends to ensure regular commercial and general aviation flights to and from the airport. The FAA compiled the list of air traffic control towers that may close across the country in response to a mandatory $600 million budget cut. The tower are Williamsport Regional Airport is one of 239 nationwide slated to be closed, and one of six in the state. Other affected airports in the state on the list include Arnold Palmer Regional Airport, Latrobe; Capital City Airport, Harrisburg; Lancaster Airport, Lancaster; Northeast Philadelphia Airport, Philadelphia; and Reading Regional-Carl A. Spaatz Field, Reading. At the Williamsport regional Airport, local air controllers handle flights within five miles of the airport. Once a plane is outside the five mile radius of the airport it is handed over to the New York Center air traffic control center.  
(WGRC)

CLINTONDALE - The East Nittany Valley Joint Municipal Authority has moved into its new nearly 5,000 square-foot building on Clintondale Hill Road. The building includes three offices, two meeting rooms and a garage where the authority's two work trucks can finally be brought under roof. The project cost more than $600,000, but money had been earmarked for it over the years and no mortgage was required. It took an $8.5 million USDA loan to build the original three-township sewer system. Growth spurred the creation of that $15 million sewer system. Throughout the area, houses were springing up where crops once grew. The Clinton County Economic Partnership was building its Lamar Township Business Park near I-80 and needed a connection to Lock Haven's treatment plant. Now that the system is in place, developers have seen the advantages it offers and even more growth has occurred in this eastern section of Nittany Valley.
(WGRC)

BELLEFONTE - Bellefonte officials are moving forward as if the purchase of the last waterfront property is final. Borough Manager Ralph Stewart tells the Centre Daily Times, borough council has seen a copy of the tentative agreement that was reached at a mediation hearing last month, and is just waiting on signatures from the current property owners. The tract, known as the Ham Store property, is the final of three properties along Spring Creek standing in the way of the borough waterfront redevelopment project plan that includes a high-rise apartment complex and a boutique hotel with parking in the middle property to serve both buildings. Borough officials are anxious to bring in an engineer to start core drilling and working on a proposal to the Department of Environmental Protection to build a flood wall. In the meantime, borough employees will revisit potential developers and decide if any others should be considered. Officials are looking to submit the proposal to DEP by June and hoping it is approved by the construction season of 2014. If everything goes smoothly, the entire project could be completed at some point in 2016.
(WGRC)

WILLIAMSPORT - The Salvation Army in Williamsport is joining with the Feinstein Foundation to fight hunger in Lycoming County during the months of March and April. This is the 16th year that Alan Feinstein will divide $1 million among hunger fighting agencies nationwide using it to help them raise funds. For every food item that is collected from March 1st through April 30th we can count it as $1.00 per item or pound as well as every check, cash contribution or pledge. So you are helping in 2 ways, by the food or money you donate and as a match for what Mr. Feinstein will add to it. The Salvation Army needs your help!  You can donate as an individual; run a food drive as a group, business, organization, school or church and this will be counted towards the Feinstein Challenge. Food donations are being accepted at The Salvation Army, 457 Market Street, Williamsport, Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

SELINSGROVE – The Jackson Penn Elementary School building will soon be used as a school for children with special needs. The Selinsgrove Area School District is leasing the building to New Story, a company providing personalized education and support to children with educational challenges. In the lease agreement, which is a two-year lease, New Story will pay the school district $80,000 annually for use of the building along Route 204. Following an inspection, operations at the school are expected to begin next month. New Story currently has locations in Berwick and many other sites across the state. New Story was looking at the purchase of the New Berlin Elementary School in Union County but negotiations and citizen complaints caused New Berlin officials to turn down New Story.
(WGRC)

UNIVERSITY PARK - A state senator from northeastern Pennsylvania has joined the growing chorus of university and elected officials speaking out in defense of Penn State and against the Freeh report. State Senator John Yudichak, a Democrat from Luzerne County, on Monday said Penn State should try to see if the NCAA sanctions could be modified. He went on to say Penn State should re-examine the Freeh report, which was released this past summer and accuses senior university administrators of concealing abuse allegations against Jerry Sandusky. Yudichak said he released the statement after speaking with Ron Tomalis, the state’s education secretary and member of Penn State’s board of trustees, about Penn State’s response to the Sandusky scandal. Yudichak joins a growing group of leaders who have voiced their opposition to the Freeh report or the NCAA’s sanctions including Governor Tom Corbett and State Senator Jake Corman. Penn State trustees Anthony Lubrano, Ryan McCombie, Alvin Clemens, Joel Myers and Adam Taliaferro have spoken out since the Paterno family’s rebuttal to the Freeh report last month.
(WGRC)

MONTOURSVILLE — PennDOT has announced a few road projects in Northumberland County coming this spring. A Route 61 Bridge rehabilitation project near Shamokin starts Monday March 11. Workers will rebuild the bridge over Shamokin Creek near Tharptown in Coal Township. Traffic will be reduced to a single lane in each direction. All work is scheduled for completion by November 1st. Also route 225 between Trevorton and Shamokin will be re-paved beginning march 11th. Penn DOT says the project will lead to some delays for motorists. Work there is scheduled to be completed by July 3rd.
(WGRC)

CARLISLE - Giant Food Stores, following a recall by Food for Life Baking Company, announced it removed from sale several varieties of Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Grain Cereals due to undeclared almond, an allergen, on the ingredient label. The cereals removed from the stores include Ezekiel 4:9 original, golden flax, and cinnamon raisin cereals. There have been no reports of illnesses to date but people who have an allergy to almonds may run the risk of serious life threatening reaction to the product. Customers who have purchased the product and would like a refund should bring their purchase receipt to Giant for a full refund.
(WGRC)