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AWSOM Animal Shelter Needs Your Help
Friday June 28th 2013

Volunteers at AWSOM Animal Shelter, located on Godfrey Ridge Drive in Stroud Township, have their hands full. Dogs and cats are coming in left and right and the shelter is extremely overcrowded as it is. Three more dogs just came in so they now have over 30 dogs and 50 cats and kittens. The problem is they're running out of space and AWSOM is the only no-kill shelter in Monroe County, so they don't want to turn them away. That's why, for the first time ever, an open house adoption event will take place this Saturday between noon and four. Saturday is the perfect time to fall in love with a pet to bring home. AWSOM is having a celebration with food and music, and offering discounts on all adoptions. If you're unable to adopt an animal, the shelter could really use your help volunteering, especially right now with the high volume of animals. For more information, call AWSOM at (570)460-1710.

Blue Mt. Ski - Water Park Work Underway
Wednesday June 26th 2013

Preliminary work on Blue Mountain Ski Area's new water park "Summit Splash" is underway. Construction on a new entrance is expected to be complete in time for this year's ski season. And electric, sewer, and water work should be done by the end of the year. Then in 2014, work will begin on the attractions. With the new water park will also come about 40 full time jobs. If all goes according to plan, "Summit Splash" will open in May of 2015.

Hamiltion Township Supervisors Pass Adult Business Zoning
Wednesday June 26th 2013

Hamilton Township resident Rosella Vidaic is out today trying to petition and fight the passed zoning ordinance that limits adult businesses, such as topless bars and more adult bookstores, to the C-2 commercial district, located on 611. Vidaic says it's sending an open invitation and shouldn't be a part of what the Poconos are about. Hamilton Township Supervisors unanimously voted to approve the amendment to the zoning ordinance at a public hearing yesterday. Officials say the ordinance is aimed at preventing adult businesses from moving into residentially zoned areas. Before, a business owner could potentially open up in any district.
The Supreme Court has determined these types of businesses to be legitimate so the supervisors have to allow them. The supervisors would rather have an ordinance in place because not only are adult businesses limited to a particular location, but it adds regulations and prohibits certain types of activity.
The ordinance is not in response to any interest of an adult business trying to come to Hamilton Township. It just prevents them from moving in to wherever they choose.

Armed Robbery at Albrightsville Gas Station
Tuesday June 25th 2013

A Kidder Township gas station is robbed at knife point this morning. It happened around 5:00 a.m. at the Exxon Gas Station at the corner of Routes 903 and 534 in Albrightsville. Police say the robber brandished what was described as a miniature samurai sword and demanded money. He got away with over $166. The suspect is described as a white male in his late 20's, early 30's. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and a baseball hat, army green in color. He also had a black t-shirt covering his face, pulled up to his eyes. Police are asking if anyone driving in the area between 5 and 5:15 a.m. saw any vehicles parked along the roadway to call them. At this time, it's not clear if the robber acted alone.

Fire Destroys Nesquehoning Home
Tuesday June 25th 2013

Seven fire companies came to the rescue in the wee hours of the morning to fight flames ripping through a Nesquehoning home. The fire started around four in the morning. Firefighters were able to bring the fire under control in an hour. Fire Chief John McArdle says two brothers, Robert and Cory Sponheimer inhabited the home. Robert claims he left a hot dog in a George Forman Grill and that was what caused the fire. Cory was not at the home at the time. After an investigation by a State Police Fire Marshal, it was determined the cause of fire was actually by a faulty power strip.

Mahoning Suspect Caught, Woman Still Wanted
Tuesday June 25th 2013

A man wanted for allegedly helping steal from a Mahoning Township store has been caught by police after hiding out. Yesterday, police got a tip that 30-year-old Justin Jacobacci of Jim Thorpe was at his parent's house. He was arrested and sent to jail on $20,000 straight bail. Police say he along with two others stole an air conditioning unit valued at over $400 from Walmart on May 7th. 55-year-old Anthony Jacobacci was arrested Thursday. And 20-year-old Jessalyn Rider of Lehighton is still wanted for the crime. Police say the Jacobacci's also went back to Walmart on June 18th and tried to steal a security system. A warrant has been issued for Jessalyn Rider's arrest. Anyone with information on her whereabouts is asked to contact police.

Walnutport: Thefts from Cars
Tuesday June 25th 2013

Police in one Northampton County town are warning the community about a rash of thefts from cars. The Walnutport Police Department is asking residents to lock their vehicles when they are unoccupied. They say there were numerous thefts overnight on June 21st. Police are also asking borough residents to report any suspicious activity they observe immediately.

Sewage Problems in a Middle Smithfield Township Community
Tuesday June 25th 2013

A Middle Smithfield Township Community has had their fill of sewage problems. A housing development near Bushkill is without a working sewer system, and has been since last Tuesday. Many residents at Lake of the Pines private community haven't been able to use their toilet, shower or sinks, and they're just looking for some relief.
The community manager called in Semper Fi Pump Service to find out what the problem is. Semper Fi Pump Service Owner Joby Poster believes there's a blockage somewhere and is on a mission to find it. It's a whole community problem that the community manager says they're working around the clock to fix.

Crematorium Opposition in Mount Pocono
Monday June 24th 2013

Mount Pocono's Mayor is up in arms over a local funeral home's plans to begin on-site cremations within a couple of months. A crematorium is set to be installed in the rear garage of the Pula Funeral Home located on Sterling Road. Mount Pocono Mayor Richard Dorkoski lives within about 100 yards of the four-bay garage complex and fears the effect it will have on residents' health. Businesses surrounding the potential crematorium tell us they don't like it either, especially the daycare that will have kids playing outside within visible distance. Dorkoski says the borough Planning Commission failed to notify most neighbors of the proposal before holding a hearing and recommending its approval. He will be talking to an attorney this week to see how he can legally stop the crematorium.

Stroudsburg Man Sentenced For the Murder of A Woman and Her Unborn Child
Friday June 21st 2013

42-year-old Ruben Velazquez Jr. is sentenced 30 to 60 years consecutively for third degree murder and the murder of an unborn child. Velazquez was arrested in February of 2011 after making a frantic call to 911. Velazquez told police he stabbed 24-year-old Krystle Vasquez in the throat because she was annoying him. Vasquez was eight months pregnant with daughter Yesenia. Both she and the baby died in his apartment on Broad Street in Stroudsburg.

Tips on Handling Car Crashes
Friday June 21st 2013

Many Americans don't know exactly what to do if they're involved in a car accident--that according to a survey by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. But a new smartphone APP could change that statistic. "WRECK CHECK" is a free app for Android or iPhone users that allows you to create your own accident report. The app prompts you with types of information you need to gather from other drivers. It allows you to take pictures of the crash and obtain information from witnesses that you can email to yourself and authorities.

Kids Caught in Palmerton Tire Slashing
Thursday June 20th 2013

Palmerton Police have identified suspects in the recent tire slashing spree. The vandalism, which also included pools, occurred last Thursday night into Monday. Police received a total of 27 seperate reports. It mostly happened in alleys in the northeast section of town. According to police, two boys between the ages of 12 and 14 were caught and confessed to the crimes. They used pocket knives to slash tires. Police are now documenting the damage and plan to press juvenile charges. Anyone who fell victim to the crimes is asked to contact Palmerton Police.

East Penn Twp. Assault Arrest
Thursday June 20th 2013

An East Penn Township man is arrested after allegedly assaulting a woman. It happened at a home in Stonybrook Estates last night. Police say the victim got into an argument with Edgar Cockey Junior. He allegedly choked her and punched her in the face. He then grabbed her hands and twisted them behind her back. Police say Cockey also threatened to kill the victim. Police found physical injuries on the woman. Cockey was arrested and charged with simple assault and harassment. He has posted bail.

Monroe County Man Just Charged with Murdering His Wife More than a Decade Ago
Thursday June 20th 2013

After more than a decade, a Monroe County man is charged with the murder of his wife. Officials re-opened the cold case one year ago. Today 75-year-old Edward Yale, who currently lives in Bangor, turned himself in to police and is charged with the murder of his wife -- 61-year-old Joan Yale. Joan died back in March of 2001. Her body was found inside a Mount Nebo Road home in Middle Smithfield Township. 12 years ago, Edward told police his wife was on her way out, when she walked down the stairs (something she rarely did) and fell.
The manner of death was originally undetermined. Now after further investigation, the manner of death is ruled homicide. Yale is scheduled to face a judge next Wednesday for his preliminary hearing. He is locked up in the Monroe County Prison without bail.

Hands-On Concussion Management
Thursday June 20th 2013

Doctors and high schools in the Greater Lehigh Valley tackle concussions head on. The OAA Orthopaedic Specialists held a special conference today highlighting the importance of improving awareness and early detection of concussions. This program has 22 athletic trainers that report back from 17 school districts and two local colleges. They work in identifying the injuries and treating the concussions early on. It's important to treat the injury right away and prevent getting hit again. Every coach needs to be knowledgeable, because a concussion can happen in any sport.

Girl Rescued from Lehigh Canal
Thursday June 20th 2013

Around 1PM authorities responded to a report of a little girl trapped along the Lehigh Canal. Twelve year old Claire Lewis of Tamaqua was biking with her aunt when she got distracted and fell onto an embankment along the river side. Lewis and her bike were stuck on an embankment about 3.5 miles away from the Weissport access to the canal. Jim Thorpe and Franklin Township Fire Department responded immediately. Jim Thorpe came to her rescue first. Authorities say Lewis refused treatment from paramedics. Lewis tells News 13 she's "ok," except for a few bumps and bruises on her back. She and her aunt hopped back on their bikes, where she told News 13 they planned on getting lunch.

Day Center Opens for Homeless
Wednesday June 19th 2013

The 130 plus homeless people in Monroe County now have a safe place to go during the day. Officials from Grace Deliverance Outreach Church on Lower Main Street in Stroudsburg are using a part of their building as a homeless day center. It opened this week. It's staffed with councilors who help the homeless find places to eat and sleep. They also have three computers so visitors can search for jobs. Soon, officials will bring in a nurse so the homeless can have free healthcare screenings. Right now, the church is footing the bill. That's why they're asking for your help. They're looking for more computers, hygiene products, money donations or just some good ideas to help the homeless. If you'd like to help, call the church: (917) 940-6641

Fire Destroys Mahoning Township Home
Wednesday June 19th 2013

Richard and Connie Kistler, of 42 Todd Lane, lost their home to a fire early this morning. According to Richard Kistler, around 8:30 AM he was changing the oxygen tank he relies on to breathe when it unexpectedly exploded. He and his wife escaped. Kistler suffered 3rd degree burns to his wrist and was taken to the hospital for treatment. They lost their pet cat in the fire. Six fire companies responded to the fire. It took them an hour to bring it under control. Two firefighters were injured in the process and sent to the hospital. Mahoning Valley Fire Chief Mark Ebbert says they'll be ok.

Commercial Development Takes On New Meaning
Wednesday June 19th 2013

Pocono Township is going through a lot of development changes. Kalahari Resort and Water Park is set to be built at the northern most part of Pocono Township. Camelback Ski Resort is proposing to build a new hotel. And recently, a five-story hotel was proposed by Trap Enterprises to be built adjacent to Desaki Restaurant on route 611. These commercial developments will not only add to Pocono Township's economy, but will also help alleviate what residents are paying for sewage. The more businesses signed up for the sewage system, the less burden on the taxpayers. Mount Airy Casino and Resort recently asked to sign up so that's a start. But as of now, meter readings are down. Pocono Township hopes these developments come through so they will not be forced to raise taxes.

New Food Pantry in Monroe County is Coming
Tuesday June 18th 2013

Monroe County will soon be home to a new food pantry and people from all across the country are coming together to make it happen. Officials from the Pocono Lake Wesleyan Church shelled out $15,000 to buy the old "Lake House Restaurant" in Pocono Pines. That building is now home to the new food pantry called "The Five Loaf House.” Volunteers from Habitat for Humanity are coming in on weekends to give the interior a makeover. Officials still need to obtain zoning and building permits before they can transform the exterior. The "Five Loaf House" food pantry is expected to open at the end of August.

A Man Accused of Killing His Best Friend Appeared in Court
Tuesday June 18th 2013

52-year-old Charles Derr left court today seemingly unmoved. The only time he showed any emotion was when he turned to tell his silently sobbing wife, "I love you." A Pocono Mountain Regional Police detective was called to the stand by the prosecution to recount what happened almost one year ago. Police had been called to Derr's Pocono Pines vacation home last July, where his long-time friend 51-year-old Matthew Stilwell was visiting. They had been drinking heavily when Stilwell allegedly pushed Derr fooling around, and a wrestling match turned deadly. Derr applied a Rear Naked Choke. A move typically used in mixed martial arts to cut off the blood flow to the brain, putting a person to sleep. This is exactly what Derr thought happened to Stilwell to end the fight. Derr allegedly heard Stilwell snoring, grabbed a soda and went to bed. The next morning he found Stilwell dead and call 911. An autopsy revealed strangulation, but it took a year of additional tests to prove it was homicide. Defense attorneys are also arguing Derr and Stilwell were acting as two adult friends having a good time. Pointing to text messages found between Derr and his daughter, Derr wrote, "I choked him out." The defense says this is simply boasting about taking down a bigger man. The defense also wants the judge to know Stilwell suffered from Cardio Vascular Disease. But today in district court, the judge did find enough reasonable doubt so criminal homicide charges will be bound over to county court. Derr is locked up in Monroe County Correctional Facility without bail and awaits trial.

Man in Court for Running Over and Killing His Brother in Monroe County
Monday June 17th 2013

It was an emotional day in court for 28-year-old Kyle Risko. He faces charges for killing his brother 29-year-old William Risko back in March of 2011. According to police, Kyle and William were in Stroudsburg drinking heavily. Kyle got in his car and drove down Eighth Street, not realizing William had apparently grabbed onto the back of his car. William fell off. Police say Kyle saw something in the street. He backed up to see what it was, ultimately driving over his brother's head -- resulting in William's death. Today, prosecutors played audio from a 911 call made by Kyle the morning of the incident. Kyle told dispatchers his brother was hit by a car, but didn't know who hit him. The same story he originally told police. Prosecutors also showed surveillance video of the incident – showing it was Kyle who was actually driving that night. Since Kyle lied about his involvement, his charges are increased. All 13 charges will be bound over to county court.

Palmerton Police: Over 20 Reports of Tires Slashed
Monday June 17th 2013

Palmerton police are on the lookout for someone slashing tires throughout town. Police have currently received 22 seperate reports and are getting more. The tire slashing spree occurred from Thursday night into Sunday, and was mostly centered in the northeast section of town from Franklin Avenue to Princeton Avenue. We're told there are no suspects at this time. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Palmerton Borough Police Department.

Rush Township Home Hit by Car
Monday June 17th 2013

A Hamburg man escapes serious injury after crashing into a Rush Township home Sunday morning. Rush Township Police were dispatched around 4 a.m. yesterday to a crash on Route 309. Police say 64-year-old Richard Leslie drove off the shoulder of the road striking multiple pieces of machinery including an air compressor and a lawn mower. The van then hit a home. Leslie refused medical treatment. He told police he thinks he fell asleep.

Tire Store in Coolbaugh Township Destroyed But in Business
Monday June 17th 2013

Business hasn't come to a halt at Jack Williams Tire and Auto Service Center on Route 940 in Coolbaugh Township despite a weekend fire. A temporary drop-off station has been set up for customers with prior appointments and for customers looking to get a price on service or tires.
Saturday night around six, a fire broke out and destroyed the tire store. The fire started about 20 minutes after the last few employees left the store so nobody was injured. The cause of the fire has yet to be determined, but there are already plans in the works to rebuild. In the meantime, employees are currently working at local stores. They are all still employed and have their hours.

Business Owner Trying to Help Fire Victims
Monday June 17th 2013

A family is trying to put the pieces back together after losing everything to a fire. A mobile home located at Pocono Village Court in Pocono Township went up in flames Saturday morning at five. No one was hurt and the cause of the fire remains uncertain. Neighbor Mary Johnson knows the Tanzer family that lived there, and is seeking them help through her business Franks Family Haircuts in Pocono Peddlers Village. She requests people to donate whatever they can for the two adults and 10-year-old girl. She plans to store everything in a back room of the shop. The barber shop is also having a Tanzer Family Haircut and Baked Goods Benefit for the neighbors Sunday, July 7th from 8am to 8pm. All proceeds from haircuts, including tips and a baked goods raffle will go to the family. For more information, just call the shop at (570)801-1285.

Poconos Pastor Pleads Guilty to Tax Fraud
Friday June 14th 2013

A Tobyhanna pastor and founder of the Pocono Mountain Charter School could spend the next five years behind bars. Yesterday, Dennis Bloom, 58, pleaded guilty to federal tax fraud. Bloom admitted he failed to report $180,000 in income -- that equates to about $58,000 in taxes. According to court records, Bloom could face a maximum of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine, plus three years probation. Bloom will face a judge again in September for sentencing.

Mosquito Proof Your Home
Friday June 14th 2013

A sunny weekend awaits after all of the heavy rain we've been having. Before basking in the sun, be sure to mosquito proof your house.
Mosquitos breed using water. It's important to get rid of any standing water around your home that the rain has left behind, including any open containers, tires and soda cans. Not only will mosquito bites leave itchy red marks all over your skin, disrupting your tan, you could contract a serious infection called West Nile Virus. According to Pennsylvania's Department of Health Officials, 2012 had 60 human cases of the virus and four deaths associated with it, which is the most we've had in the last decade. West Nile Virus can cause flu-like symptoms or in severe cases it can cause inflammation of the brain and sometimes even death.

Walnutport Area Man Allegedly Steals From Youth Soccer Club
Thursday June 13th 2013

A Berlinsville man is accused of stealing more than $100,000 from a Lehigh Valley youth soccer club. According to the Lehigh County District Attorney's office, 54-year-old Brian Farley was the treasurer of the "Tri Boro Youth Club" based in Whitehall Township during the alleged theft. In February, Farley said club bank accounts had more than $30,000 and that he paid for uniforms. But the president noticed Farley didn't pay for those uniforms and the accounts had less than $5,000. Records show most of the money the club had collected was missing. Farley was the only person with access to the bank accounts. He had been the treasurer since 2006.

Health Care Provider Behind Bars
Thursday June 13th 2013

A Monroe County caretaker is behind bars. She faces theft and forgery charges for allegedly ripping off her elderly patient. According to police reports, over a nine-month period 42-year-old Jeanette Strausser of Saylorsburg took the victim's PNC bank card and used it on several occasions for personal use. The total loss to the victim is $70,000. Strausser is scheduled to face a judge next Thursday.

Economic Development Expected
Thursday June 13th 2013

Economic officials in Monroe County say there may soon be more jobs available. Plans are in the works to bring more office space to the area.
Pocono Mountain's Economic Development officials welcome two opportunities from the Bethlehem-based company Arcadia Properties. One project, Pocono Office Commons, has already broken ground, but the first 10 thousand square foot building won't be put up until they have at least one commercial/office tenet. Pocono Office Commons will be located at Pocono Mountain Corporate Center East in Coolbaugh Township and the other project is located at the New Ventures Commercial Park in Blakeslee, where other buildings are being built to accommodate commercial development. In a time of economic turmoil, these projects will entice people to stay in the area through providing job opportunities and increasing the tax base.

Interest Rates on College Federal Loans Could Double
Wednesday June 12th 2013

If you think paying off college loans is hard now, brace yourself. Interest rates on federally subsidized student loans will double next month if Congress doesn’t work together. Right now, students pay an interest rate of 3.4%. That could jump to 6.8%. Since more than half of students at East Stroudsburg University do take out federal loans, faculty is getting ready to help student by counseling them on debt management. Congress must reach an agreement by the end of this month or the increase will take effect July 1st.

Coaldale New Ordinance for property owners
Wednesday June 12th 2013

One Schuylkill county town is urging residents to clean up their properties or pay up. Coaldale borough council voted to adopt a new ordinance, quality of life. This new ordinance is in effort to clean up problem properties to make the community more presentable. Under the new ordinance it covers everything from leaving your trash can out on the sidewalk too long, high weeds, vehicles without permits to piling junk in your front yard. Police will begin giving citations in the next few weeks. The new ordinance will work on a three strike policy, and then individuals will have to report to court if they do not pay their fines, and clean up their property.

High Water Safety
Wednesday June 12th 2013

Heavy rainfall is causing dangerous rising water that could disrupt a planned trip down the river this Father's Day weekend.
The Delaware River is about four to five feet higher than normal, allowing for plenty of dangerous conditions with a fast, cold current. That's why only very experienced boaters using proper equipment are recommended to venture out on a canoe or kayak. There's also currently a mandatory requirement that anyone on the river use an approved personal floatation device until the river level recedes below eight feet. Businesses like Chamberlain Canoes, are hoping the water doesn't rise above 15 feet because the National Park Service will close the river down for safety issues.

Car Found in Mahoning Death Investigation
Tuesday June 11th 2013

Police continue to investigate the death of a man in Carbon County last week. Monday they found a red van wanted in connection with the case. 51-year-old Robert Evert was found dead in his home on Lower Nis Hollow Drive in Mahoning Township on Thursday. A woman called 9-1-1 to report the death, but she allegedly left in the red van and police have not been able to locate her. The van was found in the parking lot of Maggie's Restaurant on Route 443 in West Penn Township late yesterday afternoon. Anyone who knows the whereabouts of 33-year-old Trisha Andrews of Lehighton is asked to contact Mahoning Township Police.

United Way of Monroe County Gears Up For 2013 Campaign
Tuesday June 11th 2013

Today, a group of people directly affected by the United Way of Monroe County came together to celebrate the past and look ahead to the future. First, awards were presented to a few special people and agencies, including the American Red Cross, which has been partnering with the United Way for 52 years and relies heavily on United Way dollars. But the main focus is gearing up for this year's campaign. For the past four years, the United Way has fallen short of goal. So they're asking for your help now. This year’s campaign officially kicks off August 31st, but if you'd like to donate now, just visit their website: www.UnitedWayMonroe.org

Spring Lane Fire Follow Up
Monday June 10th 2013

Residents on Spring Lane, just off the East Stroudsburg exit of Interstate 80 are counting their blessings today, after a blaze broke out around 6:45 Friday night. Resident Robin Porter-Griffin had just moved into her townhouse six months ago, and was lucky no damage occurred to her home. She could return today, but others are not so lucky. Three families remain displaced out of the seven, and two families remain at the Budget Inn and Suites in East Stroudsburg where the Red Cross relocated them. The Red Cross provided assistance with food, clothing, shelter and medication depending on evaluation of each person.
The fire that spread to all seven townhouses started in a shed located in the back, housing an electrical box and plenty of fertilizer. It is not yet known the cause of the fire, as officials are still investigating today. Residents Glenn and Joan Singer suffered the most damage, along with their two neighbors on both sides of their apartment. All three townhouses will need to be teared down. The Singer's have already found a new apartment to move into July 1st. They now wait to hear what can be salvaged from their belongings, along with working towards resuming their normal daily activities.

Pike County Teacher Accused of Sexually Assault a Student is Heading to Trial
Monday June 10th 2013

Today, an East Stroudsburg North High School teacher, accused of having sexual relations with her 16-year-old male student, gave up her right to a preliminary hearing. Cynthia Hartopp, 28, ignored all questions as she was walked to a police car, taking her back to the Monroe County Correctional Facility. She’s been behind bars for the past week and faces three felony charges. Tighter guidelines for this type of crime were put into place back in 2011, making any teacher who has sex or indecent contact with a student a felony offense. Under the new law, jail time is increased and even when a teacher gets out of jail for this type of crime, their name will remain registered as a sex offender under Meghan's Law. Hartopp is suspended from the school district and is in behind bars tonight. She will face trial.

Lansford Woman Drug Tafficking Sentencing
Monday June 10th 2013

A Lansford woman is sentenced in a federal drug trafficking case. 34-year-old Victoria Argott previously admitted to participating in a conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine and powder cocaine in Carbon County. It happened between January 2011 and December 2012. Today she was sentenced to 40 monhts in jail - followed by four years of probation. 22-year-old Bonnie Vosburgh of Nesquehoning has already been sentenced for participating in the same cocaine trafficking conspiracy.

Northampton Man Arrested for Theft
Monday June 10th 2013

A Northampton County man is arrested after allegedly stealing almost 50 items from a Towamensing Township store last week. State Police were called out to Country Junction Tuesday night for the report of retail theft. Officers say 29-year-old David Jany of Northampton tried to steal approximatley 48 items totaling $2,673.94 from the store. Jany was taken into custody and charged with theft. He remains in the Carbon County Prison under $25,000 straight bail.

Lansford Landmark Falls Apart
Monday June 10th 2013

A landmark Lansford building is falling apart...literally! On Saturday afternoon, pieces of the Panther Valley Mini Mall, formerly the J.C. Bright Company Building, fell to the ground as shocked visitors looked on. David Benevy, owner of the building, tells News 13 the canopy has rusted as a result of rainwater over the years. Benevy says the canopy is no longer structurally sound, and will be taken down. It will not be replaced. The Panther Valley Mini Mall will remain open.

Suspicious Death in Mahoning Township
Friday June 7th 2013

Mahoning Township Police have issued a BOLO--"Be On the Lookout"--for a Tricia Andrews, who allegedly fled the scene after discovering her live in boyfriend, Robert Evert, dead at their home in Nis Hollow Estates. Andrews called 911 when she found Evert lying facedown dead in his bed. Police were sent to Evert's home at 9 pm last night. Carbon County Coroner Bruce Nalesnik ruled the cause of death "undetermined." Toxicology reports will take 6-8 weeks. Police are asking anyone for information to contact Mahoning Township Police at (570) 275-5611.

Serious Allegations Against Former Monroe County Wrestling Coach
Friday June 7th 2013

Lori Moeck has two children who wrestle on the Pleasant Valley High School wrestling team Cody, 15 and Amber, 17. According to Moeck, the former Nazareth wrestling champion and high school coach Mark Getz crossed the line with her children. As far as her daughter, he allegedly made numerous sexual, degrading comments. The last straw was alleged physical harm to her son. Moeck filed a lawsuit against Getz and he's stepped down from his role as coach.
Despite these allegations, if you ask the parents of other team members, they says it’s all just a misunderstanding. Parent Bud Gouger currently has one son on the team, but has four other sons who were previously coached by Getz. Gouger says his kids have never expressed any concerns. He also says now that Getz is gone, the chance of competing in the state tournament and earning a college scholarship is slim. Moeck says while she's just as surprised as anyone else and feels Getz is a great coach, she wants everyone to know this isn't acceptable.

Groundbreaking Charter Arts
Friday June 7th 2013

Groundbreaking began today for the new Lehigh Valley Charter School for the Arts. Students dreaming of a career in the arts will now not only receive the education they crave, but in an area with endless opportunities and possibilities. The new school will be built at East Third and Polk Streets, within walking distance to all arts and academic institutions in South Bethlehem. 650 students will be able to go to this new 87,000 square foot building, making room for 200 new students. It will have 19 additional classrooms, a theater, four large dance studios, a rooftop performance venue and science laboratory, to name a few features. It is a fully integrated education that allows the study of art, while continually getting academic reinforcement. That's why the school attracts students from a 10 county region in Eastern Pennsylvania and they represent 45 separate school districts, including Carbon. Everyone now looks forward to the ribbon cutting in 2014. If you'd like more information on the school, give them a call at 610-868-2971.

A Look at Monroe County's Future
Thursday June 6th 2013

Monroe 2020 is a comprehensive plan to improve the county’s future. The first report was done more than 10 years ago. Since then, county needs have changed. The two primary needs, however, stay the same -- economic development and the preservation of open space. Since the programs start, Monroe County officials have conserved 18,000 acres of land, but they haven't seen the same success with economic development. Instead, commissioners say a lot of businesses have actually left the county. Commissioner Suzanne McCool says the problem is the county's high taxes, rent prices, unemployment rates and infrastructure. Officials say better infrastructure could entice businesses. While it's a lot to cover, these are all things Monroe 2020 will address. To get the ball rolling with county improvements, commissioners are forming an executive committee. They need ideas from all walks of life. If you’d like to join, contact the commissioner’s office.

two men plead to bank robbery charges
Thursday June 6th 2013

Two men charged with separate bank robberies in Wayne County are in court to plead guilty. 48-year old Steven French of Jersey City, New Jersey pled guilty to one felony count of robbery. French held up the Citizens Bank in Honesdale back in February. He handed the teller a note saying he had a gun and left with an undisclosed amount of cash. He was arrested in New Jersey and brought back to Wayne County to face the charges. And 45 year old Dennis McGuire of Lackawanna County also pled guilty to one felony count of robbery. He is accused of holding up the P-N-C bank in Newfoundland in April. McGuire entered the bank and demanded cash. He left with more than 55 hundred dollars but his mini-van was soon spotted by police on Interstate 380. Both McGuire and French are due back in court on August 8th for sentencing.

wayne bridge down to one lane for three years
Thursday June 6th 2013

Emergency repairs are now underway at a bridge crossing the Delaware River in Wayne County. Starting today the Narrowsburg Bridge is down to one lane for repairs and the weight limit reduced to 15 tons. Last winter an inspection uncovered problems with some of the 65-year old structure's beams and piers. Both do not meet current state standards. The traffic will be restricted from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays and until 3-pm on Saturdays while the work is underway. The project is expected to have the bridge down to one lane for the next three years.

monroe woman arrested on housing fraud charges
Thursday June 6th 2013

A Monroe County woman has been arrested on housing fraud charges. Detectives say 28-year old Crystal Jackson of Stroudsburg was receiving 13-hundred dollars a month in housing assistance but was working full time. She also had a live in boyfriend who is a convicted felon. Both would make her in-eligible for assistance. Jackson was renting a home from habitat for humanity. Detectives say she received more than eight thousand dollars in benefits she was not entitled to.

Elder Abuse Awareness Month
Thursday June 6th 2013

Last year, more than 18,000 cases of suspected abuse and neglect were reported to protective services.
Elder Abuse Awareness Month is calling you to take action. It's everyone's responsibility to protect the health, safety, dignity and rights of older adults. You may notice something suspicious that a senior citizen may not realize is abuse or that he or she is being taken advantage of financially. It's important to know and look for the signs of abuse, these include bruises or broken bones, weight loss or withdrawing large sums of money from an account without an apparent reason. The number of reported cases is expected to rise as Pennsylvania's population ages. The increase has prompted the department of aging to make changes to the Older Adult Protective Services Act. The goal is to provide greater consistency and additional protections for people over the age of 60. If you suspect an elderly person is being abused, you can report it by calling the 24-hour toll hotline at 1-800-490-8505, or by contacting your local Area Agency on Aging.

Nesquehoning Search for Teen
Wednesday June 5th 2013

** UPDATE: TEEN FOUND SAFE **
Emergency officials are searching for a missing teen in Nesquehoning. The girl has been missing for several hours. She was last seen around noon today, and search crews were dispatched around 1:30 p.m. They're focusing on a wooded area behind the teen's home on Little Flower Avenue in the New Columbus section of the borough. Numerous fire companies and the Pocono Search and Rescue Team are on the scene this afternoon. The Carbon County Emgergency Director says the wooded area behind the girl's home is rough terrain. The 14-year-old was last seen wearing pink pajamas and pink slippers. She has brown eyes and brown hair with blond highlights. Anyone with information on her whereabouts is asked to contact 911.

Pike County Teacher Behind Bars For Allegedly Sexually Abusing a Student
Wednesday June 5th 2013

East Stroudsburg North High School teacher, 28-year-old Cynthia Hartopp from Stroudsburg, is behind bars for allegedly having sexual relations with her 16-year-old male student. Hartropp was suspended from the district after the school’s principal got an anonymous call, alleging she was sexually abusing a student. The school's principal took the tip to police. The unnamed student told police, Hartopp was his 9th grade art teacher. Now in 10th grade, their relationship continued. The two started texting and Hartopp soon asked the student if he's a virgin. According to court documents Hartopp invited the student to her apartment several times, where they allegedly engaged in sexual relations. Hartopp faces felony changes. She’s behind bars tonight in lieu of $15,000 bail and will soon face a judge.

East Penn Township Woman Charged with Animal Cruelty
Wednesday June 5th 2013

Neighbors are shocked to learn 69-year-old Nancy Bullard had over 30 dogs. Back in May, authorities investigated her property after they were tipped off to numerous dogs not being cared for properly. Officials discovered 34 dogs--some in dirty enclosures and severely matted, and some inside the home. Bullard was charged with animal cruelty and today, officials are citing her with three more offenses-- failure to have dog licenses, rabies shots and a kennel license. A large number of the dogs were taken to various shelters and rescues. Six of the dogs were taken to Carbon County Animal Shelter. Five of those dogs have already been adopted into new homes. Bullard could appear in court if she chooses to plead not guilty.

A Little Help For Those Still Suffering From Hurricane Sandy
Tuesday June 4th 2013

Hurricane Sandy hit Monroe County hard eight months ago, and today, the American Red Cross of the Poconos gets reimbursed for all of the services it provided during the superstorm.
The American Red Cross set up the Hurricane Sandy Mega Shelter for all locals to receive services during the disaster at East Stroudsburg University's Koehler Field House. That's why the American Red Cross received a grant from the United Way Hurricane Sandy Recovery Fund there today. The money will go towards Red Cross Disaster supplies, food and shelter.
Since Monroe County was the hardest hit in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the American Red Cross plans to utilize this money to ensure it's prepared for any future disasters.

Police Can Now Take DNA Upon Arrest
Tuesday June 4th 2013

In a five to four vote, yesterday, the Supreme Court gave police the green light to take a DNA swab from anyone they arrest for a serious crime without a conviction or a warrant from a judge. When swabbed, that DNA will be entered into a database. According to the Supreme Court’s majority, along with local police and prosecuting attorneys, it’s no more invasive than taking fingerprints and a mug shot. Police says this DNA could link up to older crimes, helping to crack the 40 or so cold/ unsolved crimes in the county.

Brush Up on Your CPR Knowledge
Monday June 3rd 2013

Kicking off National CPR Awareness Week, today a group of people in Monroe County went to the Pocono Family YMCA in Stroudsburg and got a crash course in how to save lives. According to the American Heart Association, it's important for everyone to brush up on their skills. Today's class covered procedures that have changed over the years and anything you might have forgotten. If you're not CPR certified, and someone's in trouble, you can perform Hands Only CPR. Just call 911 and perform chest compressions until EMS officials arrive. Pocono Family YMCA, holds several CRP classes every month. For dates and times, just check out their website: poconoymca.org

Pedestrian Hit by Car in Tamaqua
Monday June 3rd 2013

A pedestrian is flown to the hospital after being hit by a vehicle this morning in Tamaqua. It happened around 9:15 on North Railroad Street near the Family Mini Mart. Police say a woman in an SUV was turning the corner when she struck a pedestrian in a wheelchair who was trying to cross the roadway. The pedestrian was thrown out of the wheelchair. She suffered a leg injury and was flown to the hospital for treatment. Police say the pedestrian, who cannot see very well, was not in a cross walk at the time. Police are not citing either party for this morning's incident.

Carbon County 911 Center Down Saturday
Monday June 3rd 2013

A technical glitch caused Carbon County's 911 Center to shut down Saturday night. Verizon says it was a network error. Phone lines were down from approximately 7:30 p.m. to just after midnight. Emergency officals have a procedure in place and quickly responded. Calls were switched over to the Monroe County 911 Center. A Carbon dispatcher was sent to Monroe County to help handle the calls. The director says the transition was seamless, and anyone who called 911 was taken care of.

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