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May 8, 2013

WASHINGTONVILLE – A Milton man is dead following a crash yesterday afternoon in Montour County. The crash happened just after four p.m. on Strawberry Ridge Road in Derry Township. Police say 74-year-old James William suffered a heart attack and went off the roadway into a ditch and then sheared off a utility pole. William was taken to Geisinger by ambulance where he was pronounced dead.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

MIFFLINTOWN – A Winfield man was taken to Geisinger medical Center following a motorcycle crash near Mifflintown in Juniata County, Friday. State Police say 30-year-old Stephen Bowers suffered moderate injuries in the crash. The crash happened around 3:30 Friday afternoon on Route 35 in Fayette Township. Police say Bowers failed to notice a van stopped on the roadway for another vehicle making a turn. Troopers say Bower hit the rear of the van and was flown from the scene of the crash to Geisinger. No one in the van was hurt.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

RICHFIELD – We now know the name of the man injured in a crash on Swamp Road near Richfield in Snyder County, Saturday. State Police say 19-year-old Matthew VonFricken of Mifflintown suffered moderate injuries in the crash around noon. Police say VonFricken was speeding when he lost control of his vehicle which went airborne, hit several trees and then went down over an embankment and landed in a creek bed. VonFricken was thrown from the vehicle during the crash and was reportedly flown to Geisinger.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

WINFIELD – A Winfield man is behind bars in the Snyder County Prison after he broke into a home and tampered with a woman’s computer so he could gain access to the internet through his computer. Police have charged 46-year-old Eric Jones with burglary, theft of services and criminal trespass for that incident around 2:30 p.m. last Wednesday at the woman’s home along Municipal Road in Snyder County’s Jackson Township.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

MIFFLINBURG – Two brothers are facing felony charges for stealing a safe from a Mifflinburg area home which contained nearly $50,000 in cash and jewelry back in March. State Police have filed those charges against 25-year-old Curtis Derr and his brother 22-year-old Nathan Derr. Police say the two broke into the home late March 26th along Grand Valley Road and stole the safe. The empty safe was later located in a stream in the Bald Eagle State Forest and the two allegedly took the jewelry to Williamsport and pawned it for cash.
Jim Diehl (WGRC)

WILLIAMSPORT - Efforts to put out a house fire on Newberry Street in the Newberry section of Williamsport were complicated Tuesday morning after the aging, low-flow water main firefighters tied their equipment into broke under stress. The fire, which began at about 5 a.m., burned through a garage and the upper floor of the two-story home at 2750 Newberry Street. Fire officials say the family, who was home at the time of the blaze, was able to escape without injury.  The fire is still under investigation. Meanwhile the Sun Gazette reports it was the second fire in Williamsport yesterday as city firefighters battled another blaze around one a.m. That fire burned through a freestanding garage at 2899 South Reach Road. No injuries were reported in that fire.
(WGRC)

DANVILLE - A woman left four children; including a 1-year-old with a wet diaper, to fend for themselves at a park while she went to work. Police say 26-year-old Jessica Helwig, of Danville, put a 9-year-old in charge of the baby and the two other kids, ages 3 and 6. Police say the children’s mother, thought Helwig’s sister was watching the kids. The Press Enterprise reports, Helwig dropped off the kids at Hess field around five p.m. April Third. Another woman at the park witnessed the drop off and later took the kids to her van to keep them safe and warm while she called police. Helwig now faces charges of child endangerment and related counts. She is free on bail.
(WGRC)

MIDDLEBURG – Ten people testified during the defense portion of a murder case in Snyder County that no fight ever took place at a party where a 21-year-old New Berlin man was allegedly beat to death in July 1997. Three men, Robert Reich, Chris Aucker and Ryan Sprenkel are accused of the beating of Donald Seebold the Third at the party near Port Ann in Which Seebold later died. The trial continues in Snyder County and is in its second week.
(WGRC)

DANVILLE – Geisinger Health System announced yesterday plans to conduct a study into the use of mental health services during the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in the coastal New Jersey counties of Monmouth and Ocean. The study will be conducted through telephone surveys of community residents, who will be questioned about the extent to which they were impacted by the disaster, their health status before the disaster and whether they have experienced any mental health impacts as a result of the disaster, such as anxiety, depression, panic attacks, or post-traumatic stress disorder. The study seeks to provide healthcare providers with a community needs assessment and clinical screening tools that can be utilized in future community disasters. Hurricane Sandy devastated portions of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern United States during late October 2012. Preliminary estimates assess damage at nearly $50 billion making it the second-costliest Atlantic hurricane, behind only Hurricane Katrina. Hurricane Sandy caused 72 deaths and destroyed more than 650,000 U.S. homes.
(WGRC)

LEWISBURG – Several Evangelical Community Hospital nurses were honored on Monday, with a visit from Lewisburg Mayor Judith Wagner, who did an informal presentation of a Mayoral Proclamation praising the work of Evangelical nurses and nurses everywhere for the compassionate care, skill, and dedication they provide to their patients. The Proclamation was presented on National Nurses Day, the first day of National Nurses Week which ends on May 12th - the birthday of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing.
(WGRC)

WILLIAMSPORT – Most of us have been hearing about the three missing girls found alive in Cleveland Ohio this week after years of being held captive. One of those missing girls was featured on the Williamsport Crosscutters team photo in 2010. Gina DeJesus, who went missing in the Cleveland, Ohio area on April 2, 2004, was found alive along with two other missing females on Monday.  All three were found alive, apparently kidnapped and held for years as prisoners inside a house on Cleveland's near West Side. The Crosscutters were one of a handful of teams across the country that joined former Williamsport Cubs pitcher Dennis Bair, the founder of BairFind, to feature a missing child on their 2010 team photos.  Team spokesman Gabe Sinicropi says, in a news release, “The entire Crosscutters organization sends our best wishes to Gina and her family,” Sinicropi said. “At an appropriate time, we hope to reach out to them and invite them back to the ballpark.” ”This time with Gina.”
(WGRC)

LOCK HAVEN - A chance discovery of some bone fragments on Monday afternoon in Lock Haven, temporarily delayed excavation of the foundation for a handicapped access ramp at the Clinton County Courthouse. An archaeologist was called in from the Penn State University and confirmed the bone fragments were not human and the work on the handicapped access ramp returned to schedule.
(WGRC)

SUNBURY – The Northumberland County Commissioner are looking to cut salaries to all elected positions beginning in 2016. The move by Commissioners Vinney Clausi and Steven Bridy yesterday is expected to save Northumberland County tax payers #$2.3 million over the course of four years. The Daily item reports, the motion by the commissioners also would eliminate health benefits for elected positions. Also on Tuesday the Commissioners eliminated two Jury Commissioner positions which are expected to save $200,000 over four years.
(WGRC)

WILLIAMSPORT - Lycoming County no longer will use the services of elected jury commissioners after this year. County commissioners unanimously passed a resolution Tuesday that eliminates the two positions, which were responsible for preparing jury questionnaires and establishing lists of eligible citizens to serve on jury pools for county court cases. Commissioners took action after Governor Tom Corbett signed a bill into law Monday that authorizes county commissioners to cut the positions.
(WGRC)

LEWISTOWN - Pennsylvania Secretary of Aging Brian Duke recognized the Mifflin Juniata Area Agency on Aging and Regional Services during the organization's open house on Tuesday. The Sentinel reports, Duke awarded a proclamation certificate to Kathie Graham, Regional Services' executive director, for the agency's dedicated service to the residents of Lewistown and the surrounding areas. Duke applauded the agencies goals to make sure people have access to care, residents practice healthy behavior, communities are places to age and live well and resources are used in the best way possible for aging residents. He also was impressed with the Mifflin Juniata Area Agency on Aging and Regional Services move to the new location at 249 West Third Street, Lewistown, in December. The Third Street location now houses the Area Agency on Aging, Adult Day Care, MJ Food Service and the Call-A-Ride Service a sort-of one stop shop for senior services.
(WGRC)

STATE COLLEGE - Central Pennsylvania’s Festival of the Arts has won a national recognition. The annual Arts festival has been named the fifth-best festival in U.S. small and midsized cities. Livability.com, which nationally ranks quality of life and travel amenities for small and midsized cities, chose the annual event as fifth in its top 10 summer festivals.
(WGRC)

MIFFLINTOWN - The Juniata County School District continued Tuesday the process of trying to finalize a settlement between it and the Mifflin County School District regarding the Mifflin-Juniata Career and Technology Center. The Sentinel reports, the Juniata County School District Board of Directors approved an amended settlement agreement with the Mifflin County School District. The amended settlement is an agreement between districts that Juniata County will not start any vocational education programs except medical science, which was already under way for the 2013-2014 school year. The MCSD board of directors will conduct a special business meeting at 7:30 p.m. tonight for the primary purpose of Career and Technology Center settlement. If the amended agreement is approved, Juniata County School District students will have the opportunity to attend the tech school next year for programs other than medical science
(WGRC)

UNIVERSITY PARK - Every minute counts in a school emergency, and hundreds of school administrators, law enforcement officers and first responders spent Tuesday making sure they’ll be on the same page during those precious seconds. The officials gathered at a school safety seminar Tuesday on the Penn State campus, spurred partly by the number of school districts looking at security after the December shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut. Among those speaking at the event, State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan. Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller, whose office helped organize the forum, stressed the importance of getting school administrators, law enforcement and first responders on the same page.
(WGRC)

HARRISBURG - The supervising judge for the grand jury that investigated how former Penn State administrators handled the Jerry Sandusky child sex-abuse scandal said in a new court filing that the criminal case against them needs to move forward. Judge Barry Feudale made the comment in an order released Tuesday in the case against Graham Spanier, Gary Schultz and Tim Curley. The Associated Press reports Feudale as saying, “Continued delay of this case is not in the interest of justice as to (the) defendants and the alleged victims.”
(WGRC)

HARRISBURG - The state Senate on Tuesday approved a nominee from Governor Tom Corbett to join Penn State’s board of trustees. A unanimous vote was recorded for Kathleen Casey to join the university’s beleaguered board. Corbett nominated Casey for Senate approval October first. While Corbett’s status as a voting member of the board was taken away by the trustees at last week’s meeting, he still controls six appointments on the panel. Casey will take the seat vacated by Michael DeBerardinis.
(WGRC)