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New Concerns at Hickory Hills
Friday February 28th 2014

About 80 homes in the Hickory Hills community in Moore Township had their gas shut off yesterday afternoon. Residents tell us they received a phone call from management stating "there was a major gas leak." Residents have been referred to three gas companies to have an individual propane tank installed. This comes just two weeks after a gas leak caused a deadly explosion in the park. Since then, management has been under scrutiny. News 13 reached out to management, who had no comment.

Copper Thieves Target Buck Hill Inn
Friday February 28th 2014

Two men are in police custody, after the closed Buck Hill Inn is burglarized.
Christopher Petyo of New Jersey and George Kerr of Tannersville are accused of stealing copper from the hotel.
Police say they took copper on more than one occasion in January.
Chief Steven Williams of Barrett Township Police says they were assisted by the security department with surveillance and Pocono Township Police.
Williams says, Pocono Township police assisted in the interview process and the arrest.
According to police the perpetrators took the material to APS Recycling for cash and they received about five hundred dollars.
They are facing a number of charges.

Violent Crime In East Stroudsburg Ends Without Injury
Friday February 28th 2014

Five suspects are behind bars today after trying to rob the Radio Shack in the Pocono Plaza last night at gunpoint. Police say a black male wearing a face mask and carrying a gun came in through the front door. Luckily an employee in the back of the store went unnoticed and called 911. Police were then able to arrive with the robbers still inside. The suspects ran through the back door to a get-away car. Police were ready and blocked the vehicle from escaping. Five people were inside and arrested without injury. All are from New York and are now under investigation. They tried to get away with about 25 thousand dollars worth of electronics and an undisclosed amount of cash. Stroud Area Regional Police Lt. Kevin Transue says, "We don't know if they have any ties to this area or if they picked it to attempt to rob Radio Shack." All five suspects are being housed at Monroe County Correctional Facility on 100 thousand dollars bail each.

Jim Thorpe Men Arrested for Drugs
Friday February 28th 2014

Two Jim Thorpe men are in prison after a drug bust. 49-year-old Gregory Acevedo and 29-year-old Joseph Demuro were arrested this morning after a raid. Authorities served a search warrant at 10 West Sixth Street in Jim Thorpe around 10:30 a.m. Police say they found heroin, marijuana, drug paraphernalia and over $3,000 in cash. The two were arrested and arraigned and sent to the Carbon County Prison on $40,000 bail each.

Authorities Find Man Wanted For Sexual Assault
Thursday February 27th 2014

The search for Hector Suarez, wanted for sexual assault of a minor has come to an end. Authorities have been looking for him since October, now he's in police custody.
Stroud Area Regional Detectives have been working closely with U.S. Marshalls. They found him and local authorities went to pick him up.
Yesterday Detective Susan Charles and her partner transported this individual from Newark, NJ back to Monroe County. He was arraigned and placed into Monroe County Correctional Facility.
The preliminary hearing for Suarez is scheduled for Monday.

Nutrition Facts Label In Need Of A Makeover
Thursday February 27th 2014

Choosing to eat healthy may become an easier decision. The Food and Drug Administration is unveiling proposed changes to nutrition labels found on most food packages and drinks. The goal is to have an easier than ever way for consumers to make better informed choices that will support a healthy diet. It's the first big upgrade since the labels were required 20 years ago.
The new design recalculates serving sizes based upon what people are actually eating today. Calories and serving size become the prominent focus in large, bold text. And information about added sugars will be required. These are just a few of the possible changes that are currently under review.

Salt Supplies on the Way
Wednesday February 26th 2014

Salt supplies are making their way from Wilmington Delaware to our area. The Governor urged PennDOT to speed up deliveries to areas hit hard with multiple snow storms. Trucks are picking up the supplies at the port for faster distribution and 8,000 tons is being delivered our way. Northampton, Lehigh and Monroe counties will split the delivery. PennDOT has used nearly 25,000 tons more of salt this winter compared to last.

Authorities Look For Most Wanted Criminals
Wednesday February 26th 2014

Authorities are on the look out for some of Monroe County's Most Wanted Criminals.
Some of these fugitives have been wanted for as long as two years.
With the public's help they're hoping they can bring them to justice.
The faces of these four wanted criminals are plastered on the Monroe County District Attorney's Office website. Edwin Rosario-Aquino wanted for sexual assault of a minor, Gerard Maggio for fradulent real estate transactions, Mesunga McCree for section 8 housing fraud and Oliver Kipar for fleeing after a DUI charge.
Stroud Area Regional Police is looking for Rosario-Aquino as well.
His last known address was in Stroudsburg at Creekview Apartments on E.D. Christine Drive.
they have posted a link of the wanted criminals on their facebook page.
Lt. Jennifer Lyon says, they have over 2,000 likes so far, but they're trying to build their community outreach.
If you have any information of the whereabouts of these criminals contact local police or the District Attorney's Office at (570) 517-3052 .

Polar Plunge To Protect Pets
Wednesday February 26th 2014

It's hard to do anything besides bundling up and staying inside as much as possible on cold, snowy days like today. But a few people willingly jumped into the icy waters of the McMichaels Creek in Stroudsburg. No, they're not crazy. The Polar Plunge serves to protect pets.
Eric German and Robert Transue woke up this morning knowing a hard-to-bare swim in the McMichael's Creek would soon be their fate. They planned it all for their furry friends, who can't stick up for themselves against animal cruelty. No pet deserves to be left out in the cold for long periods of time, and no pet should be left abandoned on the side of the road. Plungers are hoping a few freezing moments will bring awareness to the need to stiffen laws so pets are better protected from abuse.
German says, "More than just a fine for abandonment and punishment for owners leaving pets outside for countless hours."
About 20 people dipped into the icy creek with Northeast Search and Rescue helping and EMTs on standby. Each one serving to raise money for AWSOM. Over $3,000 was donated.

Dead Deer Pickup In Monroe County
Tuesday February 25th 2014

A hidden winter driving hazard isn't getting the attention is deserves in comparison to snow covered roads and black ice. Just because it isn't deer season, doesn't mean a vehicle deer strike can't happen. A lot of deer are being found along the side of the road right now.
Monroe County Municipal Waste Management Authority is asking for your help to pick the deer up within 24 hours of it being killed. The goal is to keep the roads clean and safe for residents and tourists.
Executive Director Jim Lambert says, "The longer they lay there, the more of a problem it becomes for odors, vectors, as well as, more people can see it."
Since 2012, the Waste Authority has taken over deer disposal in the county, allowing residents to save money and provide better efficiency. On averge they collect about 1,000 deer a year. Just call them at 570-643-6100 if you see a dead deer on any county road.

Fire Company to Bill for Services
Tuesday February 25th 2014

A recently adopted ordinance in Franklin Township, allows the volunteer fire company to bill a homeowner's insurance for its services. However, the homeowner himself, would not be billed. It's a measure several municipalities in the area already have in place. Brian Tirpak, of Tirpak Insurance, explains some policies have the coverage built in. Others, have it as optional coverage. A policy typically pays out between $500 to $2500 for fire services. The Franklin Township Fire Company is using a third party biller to handle the claims.

Teacher Sentenced For Sexual Relations With Minor
Tuesday February 25th 2014

Cynthia Hartopp was sentenced to 15-48 months in prison today for having sexual relations with two underage boys.
The defense argued that Hartopp has been cooperative over this process. Initially she turned herself in, she waived her right to a preliminary hearing and pleaded guilty to avoid a trial.
Steven Jones who represented the defendant said he was hoping for no jail time, but the judges decision was fair.
"They took into consideration her remorse...what she's done...the progess she's made after taking responsibility for these crimes," said Jones.
The prosecuting attorney argued that she wasn't cooperative. In the beginning she denied her actions and the truth came out in text messages. Then they found out about another victim.
Michael Rakaczewski, who's the prosecuting attorney says, "Sometimes when people come to sentencing they appear remorseful...they got caught and now they're more remorseful now that they're going to have to face the music and consequences of their actions.
Under Megans Law, Hartopp will be identified as a sex offender for the rest of her life. She will never be able to teach again.

Coaldale Meth Lab Bust
Monday February 24th 2014

Two people are behind bars after Coaldale Police discover an alleged meth lab operation inside their house. Police raided the East Ruddle Street home Friday afternoon. They say they discovered materials consistent with the production of methamphetamine. 33-year-old Jason Shiffert was taken into custody and is facing several charges including operating a meth lab and unlawful possession of a controlled substance. Shiffert's roommate, 21-year-old Jenny Haydt was also taken into custody on Saturday after police discovered she knew about the illegal activity occurring in the home. Haydt's 18-month old child was in the residence during the production. Haydt is being charged with endangering the welfare of children and recklessly endangering another person. Police say she is currently 6 months pregnant.

Moore Township Explosion Ruled Accidental
Monday February 24th 2014

A home explosion that killed a Northampton County man earlier this month has been ruled accidental. On February 14th, emergency responders were called out to a fire at 118 Hickory Hills Drive in Moore Township. The mobile home had exploded and 65-year-old William Neith Senior was killed. Today a State Police Fire Marshall says after an extensive investigation, the incident has been ruled accidental due to a liquid propane gas leak.

Roof Of Controversial Building Collapses
Monday February 24th 2014

The heavy snow is still taking a toll on buildings in the Poconos.
What used to be Thrills Strip Club in Reeders has been vacant for a while after a court order to close the operation.
The owner has been fighting to reopen the facility as a restaurant, but now the roof is caved in.
In October, the owner's request to open the restaurant was denied by the zoning board, but the owner is appealing that decision. A hearing will be held in March.

Confusion Surrounding Fernwood Hotel And Convention Center
Monday February 24th 2014

More and more questions surround the status of the Fernwood Hotel and Convention Center in Middle Smithfield Township. After closing in January, the owners reported it would reopen this summer after much needed renovations. But now the hotel, on-site restaurants, swimming pool, game center and convention center is now being advertised for sale on a real estate website. We spoke to Fernwood Hotel President Jim Ertle today who said he has no comment at this time.
The problem? People think Fernwood Hotel and Resort is one entity, when in fact, it's two. The Fernwood Hotel and Convention Center, owned by the Ertle Family, is closed. The Fernwood Resort, owned by the Bushkill Group Inc., is open. The 400 acre resort includes timeshare villas and outdoor recreational activities-- including three new amenities-- Blue Lightning Tubing, TreeVentures and Pocono Zip Racer. Bushkill Group officials tell us the resort is busier than ever. They would not comment on the status of the hotel because it has nothing to do with them. They simply want to make the separation clear.

Lake Harmony Turning Into a Swamp?
Friday February 21st 2014

People vacation to picturesque Lake Harmony...taking advantage of its beauty...but can you picture Lake Harmony as a swamp? That's what geologists fear... through their findings, they discovered sediment settling into the bottom of the lake. A study done in 1914 showed the lake was 30 feet deep. Now, with all the sediment, deep parts are only at 15 feet. Geologists believe if nothing is done about this, the lake could turn into a swamp.
The sediment is coming from rapid construction and lack of storm drains in the community. Township supervisors are working to fix the problem.

AWSOM Animal Shelter's Huge Announcement
Friday February 21st 2014

AWSOM Animal Shelter is bursting at the seams with excitement. The facility will be opening a spay/neuter clinic this summer where the "Cat House" is now. It'll benefit not only the shelter with its own animals but the whole community. AWSOM Animal Shelter President Marie Grimm says it'll help the shelter be more cost effective and productive.
"We'll be able to get the animals out for adoption quicker. Whereas now it can take two to three weeks. And it'll allow us to have more turnover space."
Low-cost spay/neutering will be offered for those who can't afford it. The number of unwanted aniamls will then be reduced, along with feral cats. AWSOM officials say 97 percent of the animals that come in are not spayed/neutered.
Grimm says, "If we can spay/neuter an animal before it breeds, we'll cut down on a lot of reproduction and a lot of animals that won't end up in the shelter.
One anonymous person who gave 50 thousand dollars in matching funds is making this all possible. But your help is still needed. You're being asked to donate to the "Make An AWSOM Difference Campaign" and show your support. Just call AWSOM or go on their website at www.awsomanimals.org for more information.

Spring Break is Cancelled
Friday February 21st 2014

Northampton Community College students were notified today via email that spring break, is cancelled. The break was scheduled for the week of March 17th. A spokesperson for the college tells us by cancelling the break, the semester will end on time and graduation will go on as scheduled.

Fire Destroys Home in Lehigh Township
Thursday February 20th 2014

An elderly man is injured and sent to the hospital after his mobile home in Lehigh Township, Northampton County goes up in flames. Firefighters battled the fire early this morning, but struggled to get to the home. The house was set in a wooded area, and the owner admitted he doesn't plow his driveway. Firefighters trekked through two feet of snow to try and get to the home. They were able to contain the fire in minutes. The cause of the fire is unknown.

Water Problems In East Stroudsburg
Thursday February 20th 2014

Maintenance workers for the Borough of East Stroudsburg never expected to be digging up the ground today. Crews had the task of clearing snow from storm drains early this morning. That's when they noticed water leaking out on North Courtland Street in front of Dunkin Donuts. Public Works Assistant Foreman Dan Strunk thought it was a crack in the water main. Water was then shut off for everyone betweeen the railroad tracks and Nicoletti's Barber Shop. As a result, East Stroudsburg South High School had no school today and many businesses were closed. A water boil advisory was delivered to every door, leaving residents concerned. Luckily these measures were discovered to all be unnecessary. The water was turned back on at noon and the water main wasn't involved at all. The problem resulted from an old service line that wasn't disconnected from a house when it was torn down years ago. The line developed a crack that started leaking. New rules apply for homeowners today. East Stroudsburg Borough Manager Jim Phillips says it's now required to terminate the line to the main for this reason.
With so many snow days already this winter, East Stroudsburg School District officials are doing everything they can to not let this affect students. Superintendant Sharon Laverdure says they'll apply for a wavier to get credit for today since the situation is considered an emergency. Hopefully today won't have to be made up. With everything back to normal, students at the South High School will go back tomorrow.

Flu Clinics in Tamaqua & Lehighton - Pa. Dept. of Health
Wednesday February 19th 2014

The Pennsylvania Department of Health has scheduled two upcoming influenza vaccine clinics. The first is Thursday, February 27th, from 9 a.m. to Noon, at the Tamaqua YMCA branch, 1201 East Broad Street. The other is February 28th, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., at the Gnaden Huetten Medical Office Building, 281 North 12th Street, Lehighton. Appointments are not necessary to attend. Vaccinations will be given at a low cost, or no cost, depending on each individualís circumstance. Contact the Department of Health by calling 570-621-3112 for more information. Visit health.state.pa.us for facts on the flu and to find additional vaccination clinic locations available in the Commonwealth.

Turnpike to Be Closed for 6 Hours Sunday - Carbon County
Wednesday February 19th 2014

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission cautions motorists that a 22-mile stretch of the Northeastern Extension (I-476) will be closed in both directions for six hours Feb. 23 between the Mahoning Valley (Exit #74) and Pocono (Exit #95) interchanges. The closure is necessary for the protection of motorists and workers during removal of steel girders from the bridge that carries State Route 903 over the Turnpike at milepost A87 in Penn Forest Township, Carbon County.

At 12:01 a.m. Feb. 23 weather permitting, all traffic will be diverted off I-476 southbound at the Pocono Interchange and diverted off northbound at the Mahoning Valley Interchange. Motorists stopped at the Hickory Run Service Plaza will not be permitted to reenter I-476 northbound once the Turnpike is closed. The Northeastern Extension will reopen to traffic by 6 a.m.

Locally, from midnight to 3 a.m., the contractor will utilize flagger-controlled, single-lane traffic restrictions for motorists traveling in both directions on State Route 903.

For more information visit www.paturnpike.com/constructionprojects/Rt903AEI.

In case of inclement weather, the closure will be rescheduled for Mar. 2 with times and detours still applicable

Yet Another Day Of The Winter Blues
Wednesday February 19th 2014

Freezing rain and sleet fell this morning on top of piles of snow. It's something only Mother Nature could cook up. But people in the Poconos are sick of that recipe.
Stores are always ahead of the schedule when it comes to displaying items for the next holiday or season. Many people normally roll their eyes. But this time the bathing suits are embraced with open arms.
People are welcoming anything that provides an escape from the harsh winter weather that seems to have no end in sight. While many businesses are frozen out, others are blossoming, especially on days like today.
Paradise Tanning in East Stroudsburg is an oasis to those delirious from all the white and cold. Employees tell us they've never had so many tanners this time of the year. A few minutes under the lights in a tanning bed can really take the bite out of old man winter. Paradise Tanning Customer Sarah Deisher says she's feeling better from the extra Vitamin D.
Just remember too much of anything is never a good thing. There's another place in the Poconos that'll help make winter a distant memory. No UV Rays involved. While people today are driving around worried about slipping and sliding, those inside Great Wolf Lodge's indoor water park are having a splashing good time. The resort is extremly busy. With so many snow days, people are finding refuge there.
Luckily Mother Nature seems to be warming up to our tastes. Over the next few days our weatherman Carl says higher temperatures are in our forecast.

Arrest in Hometown Walmart Arson
Wednesday February 19th 2014

One man is arrested after allegedly starting a fire early Tuesday morning at the Walmart in Hometown. 20-year-old Johnathan Maldonado of Hazleton was taken into custody last night and charged with arson. Rush Township Police say just after 2 a.m. Tuesday he shot silly string in the clearance section of the store and then lit it on fire. The fire spread to multiple shelves and caused more than $25,000 in damage. Maldonado and three other suspects ran out of the store and drove away. Eight fire companies evacuated employees and customers and battled the blaze. The Walmart store had to be shut down until three Tuesday afternoon. Police say two of the four men came forward and told them Maldonado started the fire. Officers say the other three men are not being charged at this time.

Man Accused of Abducting Daughter Speaks Out
Wednesday February 19th 2014

Timothy Simcsuk waived his right to a preliminary hearing today. He faces a charge of interference with custody of children. In December, Simcsuk allegedly abducted his daughter from her Palmerton home and set off an Amber Alert. A few hours later, police located Simcsuk at a hotel in Quakertown and recovered the girl unharmed. Simcsuk spoke exclusively with News 13 today. Here's what he said, "All the statements that were made about me killing my daughter was not true." Simcsuk is referring to a statement in court documents where he allegedly told police he considered killing his daughter and himself during the alleged abduction. When asked how much he cared for his daughter, Simcsuk replied, "how much do I care? Enough that I would never say that kind of stuff. That's all a big misunderstanding." In October, the girl's mother was charged with operating a meth lab. Twenty-two year old Emily Fatzinger was sentenced yesterday and is serving time in Carbon County Prison. According to Simcsuk, he was trying to keep his daughter safe, "I took my daughter because the grandmother was allowing a lot of drug addicts to live in her house." The grandmother, Lisa Fatzinger, says she didn't know of her daughter's drug issues. Simcsuk is in Bucks County Prison on $250,000 straight bail.

Hometown Walmart Fire Ruled Arson
Tuesday February 18th 2014

Rush Township Police are trying to identify four men they say started a fire inside the Hometown Walmart early this morning. Authorities say crews responded around 2:30 a.m. to the 24-hour Walmart Supercenter. They say four men set the fire near the lawn and garden section of the store. Sources at the scene say shoppers had to be evacuated. No one was injured, but the store remained closed for several hours after the incident. Walmart re-opened late this afternoon. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Rush Township Police Department.

Flooding Concerns
Tuesday February 18th 2014

Emergency personnel are concerned warm weather heading our way could cause flash floods throughout the area. Officials tell us flooding puts drivers in danger and could cause property damage to homes. Authorities encourage residents to have an emergency kit on hand in case flooding occurs and causes power outages. An emergency kit should include flashlights, non-perishable food and bottled water.

Snow Brings Problems to ESU Fieldhouse
Tuesday February 18th 2014

Heavy snow on top of East Stroudsburg University's Fieldhouse is causing a couple leaks.
Two ceiling vents on top of their gym have been damaged from all the snowfall. One is tilted and one is knocked completely off.
Officials are hoping to have a temporary fix in time for their basketball game tomorrow.
Syed Zaidi, who's the Facilities Management Director at ESU says, the game will go on. If they have to, Zaidi says they will close one of the bleachers.
Right now they have buckets underneath the leaks and the area's blocked off to make sure no one gets hurt.
The parking lot next to the building has also been blocked off due to snow running off the roof.
Zaidi says the building is old and at some point they would like to make improvements, but right now they're not worried about the structure collapsing.

Strip Club in Middle Smithfield Township Open?
Tuesday February 18th 2014

Middle Smithfield Township residents can't believe what they're seeing. Signs advertising an adult strip club at Werry's Motel property on Route 209 are posted- "Go Go Danny's Now Open." And residents want it to go-go-away. They're concerned and say it doesn't belong in their community.
The strip club has ignited controversy since it was proposed a few years ago. Werry's property owner Bob Spano Sr., once a township supervisor, got the strip club location approved on his own property in 2011. Since then the decision is being challenged by a group of township residents in a Monroe County Court lawsuit. So how is it open? Both the owner of Werry's and the township zoning officer refused to comment. Calls of concern are coming into the township. Township Supervisor Annette Atkinson says they're looking into it and addressing it. For now the signs remain up advertising the club as open.

People Hit The Slopes On President's Day
Monday February 17th 2014

We have tons of snow and some lucky people off work for President's Day, decided to hit the slopes.
Heather Schiffbauer who's the Director of Marketing at Jack Frost Ski Area in Blakeslee says, the weather has been perfect this season.
This weekend she says, a lot of people began their weekend friday, after the storm.
Today, Schiffbauer says, traffic was slower than usual.
Some people sking found less traffic beneficial and more enjoyable.

Deadly Home Explosion
Monday February 17th 2014

Moore Township Police and a State Police Fire Marshall are investigating a home explosion that left one person dead. The blast happened Friday night at the Hickory Hills Community in Northampton County. Neighbors say the victim reported smelling gas to the community's management just days before the deadly explosion. We reached out to Hickory Hills Management, but were unable to reach anyone for comment.

Tragedy Strikes Again For A Barrett Township Business
Monday February 17th 2014

Mountainhome Candle Comapny owners are having a hard time dealing with something they didn't think possible. Justine and Chuck Knipe are still in shock today after recieving a phone call Saturday morning their candle factory/warehouse building was up in flames. That call came from neighboring business owner Ray Cawolsky of Mountainhome Deli. This is the second time Cawolsky had to be the bearer of bad news. He alerted Chuck back in 2006 that the company's previous candle shop and factory was ablaze.
Because it's President's Day, many people have off. Visitors are stopping by for their favorite candles and can't believe what happened. Tourist Andrea Hall tells us she's now going to stock up. The Knipe's say that's a good idea-- They haven't yet decided how they'll continue making candles. They only have the candles left in their retail store, Mountainhome Wicker and Gifts, that wasn't affected by the fire.
The fire marshall we spoke with today says the cause is still under investigation. Sadly the Knipe's did not have insurance on the warehouse building.

Woman Rescued from Mahoning Twp. House Fire
Monday February 17th 2014

A Mahoning Township police officer rescues an elderly woman from her burning home, twice. The fire was reported Saturday night around 11:30 p.m. on Oak Grove Drive. A Mahoning Officer arrived within minutes of the call to find the 81-year-old woman still inside. The officer was able to get her out of the house which was filled with smoke. However she went back inside to try to save her belongings. The officer ran back in and rescued her again. Four fire companies responded and had the fire under control within an hour. Police say the house sustained heavy damage. The Red Cross was called in to help the woman. She has relocated with relatives. A State Police Fire Marshall is trying to determine what sparked that blaze.

Snow Cleanup Continues
Friday February 14th 2014

Like all the communities in the area, Summit Hill Borough crews, spent the day plowing roads and clearing snow piles. Officials ask residents to adhere to the snow ordinance, which means tomorrow, crews will be plowing the North and West sides of the streets. Crews are expected to work through the weekend.

Love Melts Through Snow And Ice
Friday February 14th 2014

Mother Nature must be immune to Cupid's arrow. The biggest snow storm to hit Carbon County this year fell the day before Valentine's Day. Florists worried-- Would they be able to deliver the tokens of love?
But love always finds a way. Arndt's Flower Shop employees were determined to think red and pink when everything seemed to be white. Florist Terri Andrews says being snowed in wasn't an option unless it was at the shop. Flowers in every color, balloon messages and cute added extras needed to be arranged.
Arndt's Florists worry people digging out won't have time to stop by, but another flower shop in Jim Thorpe has a reason to stay positive. Deezines Flowers and Gifts is typically too busy with deliveries the day before Valentine's Day to cater to walk-ins. Today they can! They're busy helping people like Jim Thorpe Resident Michael Coppie pick out his wife's favorite flower. He says no one should forget the one they love, no matter what, on a day like today.
The snow was a pain but love has melted it away. Happy Valentine's Day!

Rooves Collapse After Too Much Snow, Ice
Friday February 14th 2014

All the snow and ice has become too heavy and they're taking a toll on some rooves in the Poconos.
This Morning, Monroe County Emergency Management Officials say, they received a call on a barn and garage roof collapse and another roof concern, at a home.
If you notice any problems with your roof officials encourage you to get it checked out by professionals.
Officials say the best time to get your roof inspected is in the Fall or Spring. Once the snow piles up it is harder to fix the problem.

News 13 on Snow Patrol
Thursday February 13th 2014

News 13 traveled through various communities today. Most of the roads were quiet, but we did find plenty of plow trucks busy clearing snow. We also found residents shoveling the powdery white stuff as it came down all day. Officials encourage drivers to stay off the roads. Crews will be out all night plowing.

Biggest Snow Storm Yet For Monroe County
Thursday February 13th 2014

It's a winter wonderland turning into a ghost town. Many businesses planned to be closed today for the expected storm, but some employees got sent home upon arrival. They had just the place to go while on their way back. Arlington Diner in Stroudsburg, family owned and operated since 1969, was open for business this morning and people appreciated that. Owner George Halas said they would close early to look out for their employees.
Safety is everyone's top concern. Emergency officials are asking people to stay home if possible. Much more snow is expected to fall in Monroe County and it's piling up rather quickly. Plows are working around the clock and the drivers say maneuvering around vehicles slows down the process. Middle Smithfield Township crews are focusing on keeping the roads wide to allow for more snow.
While many municipal buildings closed early, Middle Smithfield Township stayed open for residents. With power outages reported in the South, they're ready if one should occur. They'll be opening up Country Club of the Poconos Clubhouse if there is a severe outage for showers, a warming station and WiFi. Downed wires did knock out power for 75 people in Polk Township today. A line went down on Dorshimer Road but service in that area was restored around 3PM. If anyone would lose power, emergency officials are asking you to call your electric company first and not 911.

Valentines Day Goes On Despite The Weather
Thursday February 13th 2014

The Poconos is known as the land of love and tomorrow is a big day.
Several places in Monroe County are celebrating Valentines Day in a number of ways.
This Friday Mount Airy Casino is hosting their second annual Valentines Day Vow Renewel Ceremony
The event is free and couples will receive cake, champaign, a dinner for two and even free game time.
At Paradise Stream Resort in Paradise Township, representatives say you and your significant other can enjoy a romantic dinner, entertainment, fun activities and a room made of love.
They have rooms with jacuzzis shaped as a champaign glass, a heart shaped pool, round beds, and a fireplace.
If you're interested in stopping by one of these locations for Valentines Day you could even win a piece of jewelry. Mount Airy is having a ring giveaway and Paradise Stream is having a necklace giveaway. To find out more information contact the casino or the resort.

No Salt!
Wednesday February 12th 2014

The shelves at local hardware stores are empty of salt supplies. Lehighton Hardware, in Lehighton, received nine pallets of salt this morning and sold out of the product before lunch time. Lowe's on Route 443 is also out salt supplies. The company's command center is working with vendors trying to fill its shelves. No word on when that will be.

Man On Trial For Death Of Fellow Barber
Wednesday February 12th 2014

48-year-old Shawn Develvet of Coolbaugh Township is charged with murdering 34-year-old Quentin Thomas. It happened at Stylez Barber Shop on Route 196 back in May. Thomas worked for Develvet and the two barbers got into an argument which resulted in a fight. Afterwards Thomas couldn't breathe and was taken to the hospital where he died upon arrival. We saw Develvet cry at his preliminary hearing, but today he was confident at his second day of trial. Both the defendant and his family members tell us he's innocent, it was a mutual fight.

Running out of Room
Tuesday February 11th 2014

The snow piles are growing and more snow is in the forecast. In Palmerton, we caught up with crews clearing snow piles from Edgemont Avenue. Like most communities, Palmerton is trying to get the snow piles off the roads before the next round of snow hits. In Lehighton, crews are removing snow off the roads without one piece of crucial equipment, a snow blower. The Superintendent for Public Works tells us, the parts are on their way and hopes to have the machine up and running by the end of the week.

Motel Owner Assaulted
Monday February 10th 2014

Twenty-one year old Jualian Weekes of Allentown is behind bars after allegedly assaulting a local business owner.
Lehighton Police responded to a call at the Mahoning Inn on Blakeslee Blvd in Lehighton around ten last night. General Manager, Bill Singh, tells us Weekes had been a guest, but requested a free night, saying he would pay him on Friday. Singh took pity on him and agreed. Weeks left the lobby, but shortly came back asking for a phone. Singh says he told him he didn't have a public phone. Once again, Weekes left, but a few moments later came back. According to Singh, that's when Weekes asked him to hand over whatever money he had. Court papers accuse Weekes of grabbing Singh by the throat and shoving him into a concrete wall. Also, of causing damage to the room he was staying in and the lobby. Weekes is in Carbon County Prison. He faces several charges including aggravated assault and resisting arrest.

Not Shoveling Could Cost You
Monday February 10th 2014

Snowblowers and shovels are the must-have tools of the season... or are they? Some sidewalks in East Stroudsburg Borough don't seem to have been touched, and that's a problem. The borough ordinance requires sidewalks must be cleared 24 hours after a snowstorm stops. It's a safety concern that carries a hefty fine. Property owners could be cited and pay anything from $25 to $1,000 for sidewalks covered in snow.

Officials Looking To Utilize Abandoned Hotel
Monday February 10th 2014

The Valor Clinic Foundation is looking to put the old Jonas Hotel in Polk Township to good use for our veterans.
Officials have been working to find a facility for a long time. They found other buildings, they they didn't work out and they're hoping this one will.
This one is spacious, fully furnished with 17 beds and officials say it's perfect for what they're trying to do.
Not only would the facility serve as a shelter, but somewhere veterans can seek help for stress disorders or rebuilding their skills to survive out in the world.
The facility needs a little work, but officials say they're willing to make improvements if it will help veterans.
Right now officials are in the beginning stages of the process. They've applied for grant funding and they're waiting to hear if they're approved or not. Once they have the funding they need, they have to file an application with the township to get approval to run the operation.
In the meantime, they're hoping for the best.

National Blood Shortage
Friday February 7th 2014

Red Cross officials say reoccurring severe winter is causing a blood shortage. More than 700 Red Cross Blood Drives were cancelled throughout the nation in January alone. Blood is now being distributed to hospitals as fast as it's coming in. That's why you're being asked to roll up your sleeves and donate. While Monroe County's supply isn't affected right now, Red Cross officials are hoping local blood donors will seek to support the patients in need and maintain the steady flow here. Just call 1-800-REDCROSS or look on their website for blood drives near you and to make an appointment.

Crisis Intervention Training
Friday February 7th 2014

Police officers from Carbon, Monroe and Pike Counties, met in Penn Forest Township this week to take part in Crisis Intervention Training. Program officials say, its goal is to teach officers to recognize the signs of a mental health illness and how to handle someone who has one. Police officers go through similar training in the academy, but not to this extent. Organizers plan on holding another training later this year.

Two People Killed in Lynn Township Crash
Thursday February 6th 2014

Police have identified a Tamaqua couple killed in a crash Wednesday afternoon in Lehigh County. Troopers say 52-year-old Roger Jones and 58-year-old Geraldine Jones both died in that accident on Route 309 in Lynn Township. Investigators say Roger lost control of his pickup truck on the slush covered roadway. The vehicle crossed the center line and collided with a work van. The driver of the van, 29-year-old Matthew Amey of Allentown, was taken to the hospital with minor injuries. The Jones' deaths have been ruled accidental.

Heffley's Resolution to tackle Heroin and Opioid Problem
Thursday February 6th 2014

State Representative Doyle Heffley was joined by the Carbon County Commissioners and other officials today, to highlight a resolution he recently presented to the House. The resolution would create a task force to examine current laws we have regarding opioid prescriptions, such as codeine and fentanyl, and how they're being abused. If passed, Heffley hopes to have recommendations from the task force acted on, within a year.

Local Business Shines Light On Black History Month
Thursday February 6th 2014

The month of February is here which is dedicated to celebrating Black History. To learn a little more about black history month, Shoprite has provided Black History facts on their website.
If you would like to learn more about black history log on to Shoprite.com/blackhistory

Stroudsburg Borough Snow Removal Woes
Thursday February 6th 2014

Snow frustration is an understatement for Stroudsburg Borough Residents. Many are complaining about the lack of snow removal. But Resident Paul Shepperd believes the borough is doing a great job, it's his fellow neighbors who aren't. So now he's doing the shoveling for them and himself. The street can't get plowed if people don't abide by the alternate parking signs.
A snow emergency is in place for Stroudsburg. Borough officials are asking drivers to not park their vehicles on snow emergency routes until Friday at 9AM. They say all snow should be removed by next Friday throughout the municipality.

More on Steigerwalt Murder
Wednesday February 5th 2014

More details in the murder of a Tamaqua woman over the weekend whose body was found burned in Carbon County. 35-year-old Angela Steigerwalt was last seen Friday leaving work at the Kraft Foods Plant in Lehigh County. Her body was found on Flagstaff Road in Jim Thopre Saturday morning. Court papers indicate her body had metal wire wrapped around her neck and legs. A Walmart bag with a receipt was found near the body. Items on the receipt included lighter fluid and a lighter. The Carbon County Coroner says Steigerwalt died from strangulation. 24-year-old Anthony Heath of Allentown was found driving Steigerwalt's car Sunday in North Carolina. State Troopers travelled there to interview Heath yesterday. Officials say Heath was a Facebook friend of Steigerwalt. They are working to have him brought back to Carbon County.

Coolbaugh Township Runs Low On Salt
Wednesday February 5th 2014

Coolbaugh township officials are waiting on salt to be delivered, while the winter weather keeps coming.
Steven Weber who's the Road Foreman for Coolbaugh Township says he ordered about 300 tons of salt about a month ago.
Usually Weber says they have 1,000 tons of salt and right now they're down to 40 tons.
With another possible storm Sunday, he's worried they won't have any salt at all to take care of the roads.
Weber says he called the company that supplies the salt yesterday and they told him it may arrive today, but he hasn't received it yet.

New Help For The Homeless In Monroe County
Wednesday February 5th 2014

Homeless Initiative Officials say they've received state grants totaling over $500,000 under Emergency Solutions. The Street Outreach Grant will help to find new people out on the streets and connect them with help. The Emergency Shelter Grant will not only help sustain operations at the Homeless Initiative Day Center and Stroudsburg Wesleyan Church Emergency Cold Weather Shelter, but will provide professional social workers inside. The goal of both is to provide personnel and advocates to help move people toward housing and then job income to support that housing.

Carbon County Counts the Homeless
Tuesday February 4th 2014

There has never been an official count of how many people are living on the streets in Carbon County--until now. Peaceful Knights participated in a state wide survey of those without shelter. So far they've counted 10; but there may be more. The non profit plans to build Carbon County's first emergency homeless shelter. Anyone interested can join the meeting at at Hope Community Fellowship Church in Weissport on February 22nd.

Snow Economics
Tuesday February 4th 2014

More snow is on its way! How is the white stuff affecting local businesses? Not surprisingly, we found Mallard Markets in Lehighton busy. People were stocking up, to get through, yet another storm. Alfie's Pizzeria is gearing up for a busy night of deliveries. Workers here tell us business always picks up during a snow storm.

Fire Destroys Home In Tunkhannock Township
Tuesday February 4th 2014

The overwhelming smell of burning rubber is what alerted resident Cathy Farnon something was wrong. When she checked her home on Kuhenbeaker Road in Tunkhannock Township this morning, her mother's room was engulfed in smoke. She quickly called 911, scooped up the cat and ran out. Firefighters arrived shortly after to put out the blaze. Tunkhannock Township Volunteer Fire Chief Byron Witt says the fire started in the crawlspace after a torpedo heater was placed there to thaw out frozen pipes.
The home is unlivable but items can be salvaged. Luckily no one else was home at the time. Farnon's mother, who owns the home, is currently in Connecticut and her son was staying at a friend's house. Fire officials say the situation could've easily ended much worse. The heater was creating carbon monoxide in the home. Fire officials say tragedies associated with frozen pipes can easily be avoided by calling a professional.
















World Cancer Day Raises Cancer Awareness
Tuesday February 4th 2014

Today people around the world are raising cancer awareness for world cancer day.
Local officials say cancer is the leading cause of death in Monroe County and they're encouraging the public to stop by Pocono Medical Center's Cancer facility for a screening.
All cancers are different, but if it's detected early you have a greater chance of surviving.
If you're interested in having a screening, Pocono Medical Center provides cancer screenings at no cost. To find out what days they're held, contact the hospital at (570) 421-4000.

Coaldale Man Missing
Monday February 3rd 2014

Search and rescue crews spent the weekend looking for a missing Coaldale man. 24-year-old Corey Samuels has been missing for about 10 days. Investigators believe he may be lost in the woods. On Saturday five rescue teams and local volunteer fire fighters searched the woods between Coaldale and Summit Hill. State Police and Coaldale Police searched by helicopter Sunday but did not find anything. The ground search has been called off, but Coaldale Police continue to investigate. Anyone with information on Samuels is asked to contact the Schuylkill County Communications Center: 570-668-6100

Officials Look For Clarity in Bridge Ownership
Monday February 3rd 2014

The Iron Bridge on Ridgeway St. is one of the many structurally deficient bridges in the state.
For now the weight restriction has been lowered to 13 tons, but it needs to be fixed.
However, officials say it's not clear who's responsible to fix the bridge.
Jim Phillips, who's the Borough Manager of East Stroudsburg says, Penn Dot or the Northeast Regional Railroad Authority takes on that responsibility.
Ron Young who's the press secretary for Penn Dot on the other hand says they're only responsible for the bridge roadway and approaching roadways.
We tried to contact the president of The Northeast Regional Railroad Authority, but we were unable to speak with him.

Groundhog Predicts Six More Weeks Of Winter
Monday February 3rd 2014

Monroe County residents aren't only dreading more days like today, they're tired of the cleanup. Mail Carrier John Schulz was working his way through the snow in Stroud Township, and he's not looking forward to six more weeks of winter. No one likes driving in the snow, especially those forced by their occupation. And that thinking is keeping customers away from some businesses, like Palumbo's Pizza in Bartonsville. Manager Michael Hayes says he doesn't know how many more snow days like today he can take. Hayes says this harsh winter is melting away profits like no other before. Sales Manager Pete Hensel of Abeloff Kia couldn't agree more. People don't normally look at cars on snow days, and a lot goes into getting them cleaned off. While many businesses feel the same, there's one business looking forward to six more weeks of winter-- Contractors love this type of weather because they're busy plowing parking lots when they'd normally be laid off. PennDOT officials are also out keeping our roads clear, but they'd rather be doing other winter work for us that they can't accomplish with these conditions. And like Punxsutawney Phil, they don't see an end to the harsh winter any time soon.

Tamaqua Woman's Body Found in Jim Thorpe
Monday February 3rd 2014

Family members tell us the body found in Jim Thorpe on Saturday is that of Angela Steigerwalt. The 35-year old was last seen heading out to work on Friday afternoon. Her husband suspected something was wrong when he didn't hear from her all night during her shift. He called authorities. The next morning, borough firefighters discovered her body when they responded to a brush fire. Police recovered the victim's car in North Carolina. Anthony Darrell Heath, of Allentown, was with the car. He was taken into custody, and is facing theft charges. Heath has not been charged with Steigerwalt's murder.

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