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BRCTV-13 News Archive

FUNERAL MASS FOR CORPORAL BRYON DICKSON
September 18, 2014

Thousands gathered today to lay the fallen state police trooper to rest. The funeral mass for Corporal Bryon Dickson started at St. Peter's Cathedral in Scranton this morning. He was killed during a deadly ambush at the Blooming Grove Barracks in Pike County. It's a solemn day for all, but also a day to celebrate his life.
It was quite a farewell and thank you to Dickson. Family, friends, officers from all over the country-- including states as far away as Alaska-- and even strangers lined the streets to pay their respects.
A procession to the cemetary started after the service. Flags both on the ground and in the air led the way. Dickson was laid to rest in his home town of Dunmore with full honors.

SCHOOL BOARD USES TAX PAYER DOLLARS FOR LEGAL FEES
September 18, 2014

Stroudsburg School Board is facing more heat, after a vote last night to pay attorney fees for two board members. In August, three parents sued school board president Richard Pierce and Vice President Bruce Stewart in an attempt to reopen Ramsey Elementary.
The school closed for good June 17th.
Some parents believe they should pay out of their own pocket, instead of using tax payer dollars.
After this case, Pierce says, he would like to create a policy that says what should or shouldn't be covered in the future.

SCHOOLS NOT TAKING ANY CHANCES, SUSPECT STILL AT LARGE
September 17, 2014

Schools near where police say the manhunt is still going on weren't taking any chances today with the suspect still on the loose. Wallenpaupack, Monsignor McHugh and Pocono Mountain Schools were all closed. While other schools in Monroe County are taking precautions.
Residents all over Monroe County are on edge. They can't believe the Pike County deadly ambush suspect Eric Frein lives in their county. He is described as armed and dangerous, and is said to have made threats in the past about killing law enforcement officials and mass acts of murder. That's why everyone we talked to agree children in the area shouldn't be in school, especially parents from Pocono Mountain School District. That's one of the districts closed. Both parents we talked to say they would like to see the school remain closed until he's caught. East Stroudsburg North is also in the immediate area but school officials didn't call off school. They're going by what state police are telling them. While some parents may be upset by the decision, school officials say numerous calls have come in with appreciative parents. They say current information called for extra support at the north campus, along with a level one lockdown at all schools. Normally people entering the building need to show ID and they have their own armed police department. Superintendent Sharon Laverdure says a level one lockdown means no recess, students stay inside the building once they get there. After school activities are on a case by case basis.
And schools near Frein's home aren't the only ones taking precautions. Monroe's Northampton Community College Campus increased security guards and alerted staff to be more vigilant. And students were grateful.
All school officials we talked to have not made a decision for tomorrow. They're waiting on more information from state police.

WHO IS ERIC MATTHEW FREIN?
September 17, 2014

Police have been searching high and low for the Blooming Grove State Police Shooting Suspect, Eric Matthew Frein for five days now.
Since the shooting police and the community have been on high alert.
Barrett Township Police say they've had two encounters in the past.
In spring of 2013. police say he reported his motorcycle stolen.
Then in 2005, he was reported for trespassing on someone's property walking his dog.
Police say he wasn't violent in either case.
Neighbors say the suspect seemed quiet and very intelligent. Every now and then one woman says she used to see him go for a run in the neighborhood.
Police say Frein has quite a bit of rifle training. He was a part of the Pocono Mountain East Rifle Team in high school and his father is a veteran of the armed forces.
Police say his father also worked closely with him, teaching him how to shoot.
His father says, he was a better shooteer than he was, never missing a shot.
Police believe the suspect is specifically targeting law enforcement and the general public shouldn't be in danger, but to be safe, police advise you to lock your doors, look for doors that look like they've been open and and leave lights on outside of your home.
If you spot the suspect call police. Don't approach him. He is considered armed and extremely dangerous.






EARLY INTERVENTION
September 17, 2014

Developmental benchmarks, they exist to help track a child's progress. Experts say they're important because a child's development today, will affect them tomorrow. That's why experts suggest getting your child screened for developmental delays if you feel there is a problem. Free screenings will be available at the WIC office inside the Body and Soul building in Lehighton tomorrow from 9am until 3pm. No appointment is necessary. Screenings are for kids ages newborn through 5 years old. Screenings are also scheduled for October 23rd and November 20th. For more information about the services available call the Carbon- Lehigh Intermediate Unit at (610) 769-4111 or call Carbon/Monroe/Pike Early Intervention at (610) 377-0773 x3720.

REMEMBERING CORPORAL DICKSON IN MONROE COUNTY
September 15, 2014

Corporal Bryon Dickson has been a state trooper since 2007. He only recently transfered to the Blooming Grove State Police Barracks in Pike County three months ago. But his first assignment was actually at Monroe County's Fern Ridge Barracks.
The shocking attack on Pike County's Blooming Grove State Police Barracks is hitting home everywhere, and even more so with those who knew the victim. 38-year-old Corporal Bryon Dickson II of Dunmore was killed.
Corporal Dickson first started as a state trooper at Monroe County's Fern Ridge Barracks in 2007. That's how Chestnuthill/Jackson Township Magisterial District Judge Colleen Mancuso knew him. At that time she was prosecuting all of his cases as an assistant district attorney in Chestnuthill Township. She remembers him as very serious, a good trooper and reasonable to deal with for the defendants as well as the Commonwealth. His fairness leads Mancuso to believe this incident couldn't be a result of any of his cases. She says he was fun to work with and didn't mind being teased. One of her last memories shows that. Dickson was promoted to corporal and sent to Philadelphia in 2013, but would come back to finish up cases-- one time he was wearing a bow tie and suit.
Mancuso laughing says, "I just started laughing, the other troopers were laughing. I mean it was just so funny to see him in this bow tie and he was very proud of it, he liked it!"
Today Mancuso is thinking about his family, which includes a wife of 10 years and two young sons. A fundraiser has been set up by other trooper wives to help the victims' families with expenses. Trooper Alex Doulass was critically injured.
If you'd like to donate to the victims' families, just go to www.giveforward.com and search for "Dickson and Douglass Families."

GAY RIGHTS ACTIVISTS BUY ABANDONED BUILDING
September 15, 2014

A building that's been abandoned for 20 years will have a new owner soon.
Gay rights activists of the Lehigh Valley are campaigning for a community center they can call their own.
Today they revealed the location of what will be the Bradbury-Sullivan Community Center.
The building is in a historic district in Allentown. It needs some work, but organizers say it''ll be a great home for the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender community.
In support of their efforts organizers say the city is selling it for a dollar.
The community center is still in the very early stages, but they have a design team of engineers, architects and attorneys working at no cost.
If you'd like to help log on to their website.
BradburySullivanCenter.Org

GOLF FUNDRAISER RAISES MONEY FOR POLICE
September 12, 2014

When you think of police you think about how they help the community, but once a year the community are help police.
Today members of the community hit the links in support of our officers for the Fifth Annual Vests Golf Tournament. The fundraiser hosted by Fernwood Golf Course raises money to buy new bullet proof vests for Stroud Area Regional Police. The protective vests have to be replaced every five years.
"It's a very important tool that we use in order to keep our officers safe while they're out protecting the community and anything we can do to offset some of the cost for the vests...helps out the police budget," said Chief William Parrish.

A LOCAL LIBRARY NEEDS YOUR HELP
September 12, 2014

A Monroe County Library may be forced to cut services and staff. That's why Barrett Paradise Friendly Library is asking for your help. A tax hike to fix the problem is currently on both township supervisor tables.
Barrett Paradise Friendly Library is requesting a tax increase. Director Cindy Deluca says the library's annual operating cost totals $270,000-- $21,000 comes from the state and $90,000 comes from it's two service areas-- Barrett and Paradise Townships. The rest of the money is dependent on library fundraising events. Deluca says if the 10-12 fundraisers the library has each year doesn't bring in the leftover $150,000 for the budget cost the community will lose services-- hours will need to be cut and staff laid off. That's why it's necessary for the Library tax to increase-- so the money coming in won't be uncertain.
The decision is now in the hands of both Barrett and Paradise Township Supervisors. Deluca says they each have the next two months to decide if they will raise the tax or not. And you can help by contacting both township supervisors with your opinion. Deluca is thankful for the people already calling in supporting the library and hopes more join in. If you'd like to further help, you can always donate directly to the library.

AMBULANCE HOPES
September 11, 2014

People in Lansford are hoping to see the return of their ambulance. Residents report seeing the lights on at various times at the building, but officials say although they'd like to see the ambulance return, they feel it's unlikely. The borough council president says the council isn't aware of the ambulance trying to reconvene. The former ambulance chief tells News 13 he stepped down earlier this year and the new chief is Terry Smith. We were unable to reach Smith for comment. The former chief tells us the activity people may be seeing at the ambulance building may be the staff starting up the trucks to keep them maintained.

SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS RAISE MONEY FOR HOMELESS
September 11, 2014

Winter is around the corner and soon many homeless in our area will be out in the cold.
The Monroe County Street 2 Feet Outreach homeless day center is teaming up with Scarlet Ice Jewels and JS Spa & Boutique to raise money for cold weather supplies.
This Sunday you'll be able to do some shopping with 20% off and get pampered for as low as fifteen dollars.
The Spa and Boutique fundraiser will be held from 11:30am to 4pm Sunday. There will also be food entertainment, music and a hair stylist. All proceeds will go to the day center.

GIVE BACK AND NEVER FORGET
September 11, 2014

No matter who you are, whether you lost someone or not, Americans will never forget the September 11th, 2001 terror attacks. 13-years-ago today, three thousand people lost their lives in attacks that changed America forever.
That's why for the ninth year, Pocono Raceway and the American Red Cross are teaming up to honor the heros and those who lost their lives on that tragic day by giving the community the opportunity to give back. One-- By donating blood at the raceway from 1-7PM. One pint of blood can save three lives. And two-- Ride for the Red, where you can drive your car around the Tricky Triangle. Everyone 18 and older just needs to pay $10 per lap and all the money goes to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Funds for a third year in a row.
And the weather isn't a damper. The blood drive is set up inside and unless there's lightning or pouring rain, the cruise around the track is on. And if you donate blood, you'll be entered to win a "Fantasy Race Package."
The drive around Pocono Raceway in Long Pond runs until 6:30 and walk-ins are welcome to donate blood until 7 tonight.

TAMAQUA MAN ARRESTED FOR BURGLARY
September 11, 2014

A Tamaqua man is arrested for stealing thousands of dollars worth of items from a borough business this past weekend. 24-year-old Thomas Kehl was taken into custody yesterday for burglarizing Lehigh Tire and a theft at All American Jeep. Police say they were tipped off after the reported stolen items went up for sale on Facebook. Police spent yesterday morning removing the tools from an apartment and garage on West Spruce Street where Kehl lives. The tools were valued at up to $15,000.

GOODBYE SUMMER, HELLO FALL IN THE POCONOS
September 10, 2014

Tourism is on the rise in the Poconos. At least that's what the numbers show for summer stays this year- up 7 to 10 percent. And it's expected to continue through the fall as leaves start changing. Which is something Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau is on top of. Last Thursday they launched their first Fall Foliage Forecast on their website. Forecasts will continue every Thursday until the end of October.
Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau Public Relations Manager Elizabeth Richardson says, "Where the leaves are at, as far as when they'll reach their peek brightness, when they'll start to fall of the trees, so you can really get the most out of fall here."
And new this year is Fall Fun Fridays. Starting this week you can learn new ways to enjoy fall in the Poconos and special events on their website at poconomountains.com and social media linked to it.

STROUDSBURG TOY DESIGNER ACCUSES BIG BOX RETAILER
September 9, 2014

A local designer is calling out Walmart for copying one of her ideas.
Both Walmart and the Stroudsburg business "The Queen's Treasures" sell their own line of accessories and clothing for 18-inch dolls. But Owner Joann Cartiglia says her bakery playset is practically identical to the one for sale on Walmart's shelves. And there's even evidence. Walmart bought the design from Paradise Kids LLC based in Connecticut. Cartiglia's invoices reveal the company's creative designer purchased her bakery.
Cartiglia says, "If you want to buy something to get inspiration from it, ok. But if you want to buy something to copy it, that's stealing in my opinion."
We made multiple calls to Paradise Kids LLC and were told no one was available to comment at this time. While Walmart's Spokeperson John Forrest Ales had this to say:
This situation is specific to an individual supplier and it is best for them to provide further comment. We work with a number of small businesses, including the supplier of this toy, to help us provide our customers with the products they want at everyday low prices. We hold ourselves and our suppliers to high standards.
Cartiglia says, "I'm not looking to profit from anything. I have always worked really hard to get everything I have. I was handed nothing. So I'm not looking for this to be a win for my company. I'm standing up for myself."
Cartiglia says she's currently exploring her legal options and just wants to see Walmart pull their bakery off the shelves and donate it to Toys For Tots.

FLUNKING OUT
September 9, 2014

Dozens gathered in the Lehigh Valley to tell state officials the formula used to fund education is flunking. The "Basic Education Funding Commission" held a public hearing at the Parkland Administration building today. The commission is going across state to gather feedback from districts in order to create a new model for distributing state education dollars. Legislators agree the current formula is ineffective and that's why the commission was created. One suggestion heard today is to create a "student needs formula" and to adjust revenue based on those needs. The commission plans to hold hearings through the end of the year and will make its recommendations to the General Assembly by late spring, but it's up to the assembly to carry out the changes.

TWO ARRESTED AFTER JULY ASSAULT IN EAST STROUDSBURG
September 9, 2014

A second Monroe County man has been arrested and charged with an assault that left a victim in a coma for eight days. Police arrested 19 year old Malik Clark of East Stroudsburg Friday night. Clark and 19 year old Dyshawn Mack face attempted homicide - aggravated assault and other charges from an incident July sixth at a home on Prospect Street in East Stroudsburg. Police say the two men were part of a group of people who barged into a party and then started a fight when they were asked to leave. Officers say Mack and Clark punched and kicked a 23 year old man who was attempting to flee upstairs. The victim was knocked unconscious and left in a coma for eight days. Clark is being held without bail. Mack's bail is set at 400-thousand dollars. Both face a court hearing on the charges next week.

OFFICIALS SEEK HELP TO REDUCE FERAL POPULATION
September 9, 2014

If you have a problem with stray cats, officials have a solution, but they need help from the community.
Officials from the Monroe Animal League are working with the Eastern Pennsylvania Animal Alliance and local residents to reduce the population of feral cats in our neighborhoods through their trap neuter spay return program.
Last year five hundred cats were spayed and neutered. This year officials are hoping there'll be more.
"People in the community need to step forward and help do it, because they're usually the ones feeding them...they see them...if we go we're strangers to them so they scatter," said Nancy Jones, the president of the Monroe Animal League.
If you're interested in trapping cats all you need is food and a trap. After it's caught you take it to the clinic, it's spayed or neutered and returned to where it was found.
It cost $20 to have a cat spayed or neutered through the program. Vouchers are even available to help with expenses. To apply contact the Monroe Animal League.

MAN FACES CHARGES FOR FLEEING POLICE
September 8, 2014

A man authorities say fled police twice over the weekend is facing several related charges.
Pocono Township and Stroud Area Regional Police worked together to arrest Lamont Wiggins, after he fled police on a motorcycle Saturday and Sunday.
The first incident was in Stroudsburg. The second started in Pocono Township and ended in East Stroudsburg.
Police say he's facing charges for driving under a suspended license, receiving stolen property, unauthorized use, DUI and fleeing and eluding a police officer.
Officials say bail for the second offense is set at $50,000. He has two preliminary hearings scheduled this month. He remains in police custody.

POCONO MEDICAL CENTER RECEIVES AN HONOR
September 8, 2014

It can take as little as 30 seconds to become an organ donor but it could mean life or death for a person waiting for a transplant. That's a message Pocono Medical Center has strived to get out to the community and today they were awarded for their efforts. Out of the 46 hospitals participating in this year's Pennsylvania Donate Life Hospital Challenge, PMC received the highest-level status award for their commitment to organ donation. From February to May, participating hospitals held activites to increase donor awareness.
President/CEO Howard Nathan of Gift of Life Donor Program says, "In our region, there's 6,300 people waiting for an organ transplant. Many as 300 of those people will die without an organ so the more awareness we can create that people become donors on their driver's license, the more people that we can save lives. And PMC took the lead in raising that awareness."
If you'd like to further the cause, sign up to donate on the Gift of Life Donor Program website at www.donor1.org.

RESTAURANT FIRE
September 8, 2014

A state police fire marshal is investigating what caused a fire at a Carbon County restaurant. It happened at Le Quattro Stagioni restaurant in Nesquehoning on Sunday morning. Officials say the restaurant was closed at the time, the building was empty and nobody was hurt. Officials say they don't believe the fire is suspicious. Although an exact cause hasn't been determined, officials say it started in the attic around a heating and air conditioning combination unit.

HUMAN REMAINS FOUND IN COALDALE WOODS
September 8, 2014

On Saturday evening, Coaldale police received a call about skeletal remains being found by hikers in the Seek section of the borough. With the assistance of Pennsylvania State Police, the remains have been identified as those of 24-year-old Corey Samuels of Coaldale. Samuels, a former Marine, was reported missing by his family in January and a manhunt ensued. State police have taken over the investigation of the remains. A cause of death is yet to be determined.

DRUG TIP LINE
September 5, 2014

Carbon County's newest weapon in fighting the war on drugs is a "tip line." District Attorney, Jean Engler, tells us the drug tip line is available 24 hours a day. People who call the tip line will hear a prerecorded message informing them they've reached the line. A person can then leave an anonymous tip or leave their name and number if they'd like to be contacted. County detectives will sort through the tips and then investigate any credible leads. The DA says it's a step in the right direction towards battling the epidemic drug problem in the county. The tip line number is (570) 732-0089.

A SIGH OF RELIEF FROM DRIVERS
September 4, 2014

After three months of special one-way traffic patters, restrictions on the McCall bridge in Lehighton are being lifted. The special patterns were put in place in June. Crews worked 12 hour shifts, 24 hours a day, for 80 days straight in order to complete work on the bridge by the deadline of September 5th. A PennDOT construction manager tells us crews replaced the deck on the bridge and all the joints. Work on the bridge will continue through winter and drivers may come across special traffic patterns occasionally, but officials say the restrictions will be short and mostly at night.

FAMILY OF VICTIMS IN MACHETE ATTACK SEEK COMMUNITY HELP
September 4, 2014

Police are on the hunt for a man accused of attacking his wife and son with a machete yesterday morning at thier Coolbaugh Township home.
Police recovered the weapon at the scene, but the suspect is still at large.
Police say, Paul Brown attempted to kill his wife and son with a machete. They're both left with defensive wounds and lacerations. His wife lost a finger in the attack.
The mother of the victims is pleading for help from the community.
If you spot the suspect police advise you to call 911. Don't approach him.
The victims are still recovering in the hospital.

TRANSITIONING INTO A NEW SCHOOL
September 3, 2014

A new school can mean new concerns for students and parents alike. Experts share some advice on how you can help your child transition into a new school. Students are encouraged to join extra curricular activities. Experts say this will help them form new friendships with people who share the same interests. Parents are also encouraged to get involved in their child's school. It's a good way to know what's happening in their child's surroundings. The best bit of advice experts say parents should follow is to give your child your time. Spend time with them. Ask them about their day and keep the lines of communication open.

LONG POND MAN WAIVES PRELIMINARY HEARING
September 3, 2014

Kirk Randler of Long Pond is facing charges for a fatal accident back in June.
Randler was behind the wheel of a car, trying to pass vehicles on the roadway on June 20th when he collided head on with an suv.
42 year old Katrina Strausser of Reeders and her two sons were also in the car. All four passengers were ejected, sustaining injuries, along with two people in the other vehicle. Strausser passed away.
Randler is facing nince related charges. Some of them are vehicular homicide, aggravated assault by vehicle, involuntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment, speeding and careless driving. Today he waived his right to a preliminary hearing.
The case will now go to trial.

MASTER GARDNERS
September 2, 2014

The Penn State Extension office in Carbon County is looking for a few good men and women who would like to become Master Gardeners. The extension is accepting applications into it's 6 month program. Master Gardener students will learn about plants, insects, soil and all that gardening entails. For more information about the course contact the office in Jim Thorpe at (570) 325-2788.

STUDENTS RETURN TO CLASS WITH NEW DRESS CODE
September 2, 2014

School is back in session for everyone in Monroe County. Some are beginning the new school year with new rules.
East Stroudsburg and Pocono Mountain School Districts are enforcing a dress code for the first time. They're hoping students will not only learn academics, but appropriate attire as well.
"I think it's a start understanding that most jobs have standardized attire," said East Stroudsburg School District Superintendent Sharon Laverdure.
Swiftwater Intermediate School Principal, Kristine Kunsman says it gives them a sense of belonging.
"It makes them feel apart of something," said Kunsman.
Unlike uniforms officials say, the dress code gives students individuality. Flip flops, jeans or name brand logos aren't allowed.
Students are to wear collared shirts, khakis, dress slacks or corduroy pants.
As an exemption, officials say, school district apparel is acceptable.

THEFTS FROM LANSFORD CARS REPORTED
September 2, 2014

The Lansford Police Department is investigating a series of thefts from parked vehicles. The incidents happened early this morning in the west end area of the borough. The actor entered several vehicles, rummaged through contents and removed valuables. Residents are reminded to lock vehicles - secure valuables and report any suspicious activity to Lansford Police: 570-645-5844

AN OLD ESU DORM PROJECT IS BROUGHT BACK TO LIFE
August 29, 2014

An East Stroudsburg University Building project is revived to provide more suite style resident halls.
University officials say the demand is growing.
Two dorms were completed in 2012 and one put on hold. Now ESU officials are moving forward with a third building.
"We're working through the finances now at this point we anticipate the project will not be exactly half of what the other phases cost...We spent a little less than 75 million dollars on the first phase," said Kenneth Long, the ESU V.P. of Finance.
Long says they've applied for financial assistance through the U.S. Department of Agriculture Financing Program.
A part of the process requires a public meeting. ESU Officials held one last night. There's still time to submit comments if you missed the meeting last night.

KEEPING AHEAD OF THE TREND
August 29, 2014

Two local organizations are joining forces to help with real estate transactions in our area. The Carbon County and Lehigh Valley Associations of Realtors have voted to merge.
Members of the Carbon County Association of Realtors are excited. They voted Wednesday to merge with the Lehigh Valley Association, while Pocono Mountains opted out. Realtors pay to belong to these organizations. They're held to higher standards and have more to offer their clients.
Talks of the merger started after Carbon County felt they wouldn't remain accredited. Come January 1st, the National Association of Realtors is going to implement changes to the core standards requirements.
The merger will benefit its members by providing better services, a larger audience for listings and paying only one fee instead of two.
Pocono Mountains' Directors liked the benefits of the regionalization but not enough of their members voted for the merger. Carbon County Association of Realtors President James Zurn says, "They just felt at this time, to lose some of their identity and perceived power, it wasn't the right time for them right now."
The merger won't be finalized until both board of directors come together to iron out the details in the next coming weeks.

YOU NEVER KNOW WHAT YOU MAY FIND AT THE WEST END FAIR
August 28, 2014

County fairs are a great place to learn about agriculture. And the West End Fair in Gilbert has its share of farm animals. But this fair likes to broaden its appeal with something a bit more exotic. You may remember lions, tigers and bears at past fairs, but this year the focus is alligators. Kachunga and the Alligator Show runs daily with thrilling stunts for families to enjoy but the main focus is education. Come check out all the animals for yourself. The West End Fair runs until Saturday and you can check out the different animal show times on the fair's website.

NO SWIMING ALLOWED AT TOBYHANNA LAKE BEACH
August 28, 2014

There's no swimming at the Tobyhanna Lake Beach, after high bacteria levels were found in the water.
Officials say, the high bacteria levels usually come from waste of geese and other wildlife.
Officials from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources are waiting on new water samples.
They're hoping to have swimming back open by Labor Day.

DOG KILLED BY BEAR IN CARBON COUNTY
August 28, 2014

Police say a dog in Mahoning Township was killed by a bear. A resident of Westside Road reported their dog had been killed on August 23rd. The dog was found deceased on Fairview Road. The dog was examined and the cause of death was labeled a bear attack.

FATAL MOTORCYCLE CRASH IN HOMETOWN, SCHUYLKILL COUNTY
August 28, 2014

A Barnsville man is killed in a motorcycle crash last night in Hometown. The accident happened around 7:15 on Route 309 near Ye Old Hauto Road. Police say 38-year-old Brian Bittner lost control of his Harley Davidson. He crossed over the center line and struck the rear driver side of a Chevy Impala. Bittner's motorcycle then continued into a parking lot where it struck a parked Seitz Brothers box truck. Bittner was pronounced dead at the scene. Police say they are still investigating.

LONG TIME RESORT, SOLD!
August 27, 2014

The long time, Daniels Top- O-The Poconos family resort has been sold.
Remax Commercial Sales Director and Broker, Robert Starrett says the new owners plan to use the old resort as a Hasidic Jewish Campground and training center.
Starett says the property was sold at $1.3 million.
While the property is in pretty good shape realtors say the new owners plan to spruce it up a little. They plan to have the camp open in about three weeks.

MCCALL BRIDGE PROJECT WRAPPING UP
August 27, 2014

Special traffic patterns on the McCall Bridge in Lehighton will soon be lifted. PennDot official tell us the project is on schedule and the one-way lane restrictions are expected to be lifted on Friday, September 5th. Work on the bridge will continue and drivers can expect temporary lane closures until the work is completely finished.

BANK ROBBERY
August 26, 2014

Rush Township police are investigating a robbery at Mauch Chunk Trust Bank on Route 309 in Hometown. It happened just after two in the afternoon. Police say a man wearing panty hose over his face, a Phillies baseball hat, and white laytex gloves, rushed into the bank and jumped over the counter. He grabbed an undisclosed amount of money and ran out into the parking lot where he got into a Sport Explorer - Sport Track, 4-door pick up truck, being driven by another man. Nobody was hurt in the incident. The suspects are still at large. Anyone with information is asked to contact Rush Township Police.

THE WEST END FAIR CONTINUES
August 26, 2014

The West End Fair is back for the 93rd year.
There's plenty of food, rides, entertainment and even shopping. Many of the vendors are non- profit. The fair will go until Saturday.

BRIDGE PROJECT GETS WORSE BEFORE IT GETS BETTER
August 26, 2014

Route 33 North was closed today between Snydersville and Bartonsville. The reason-- a hole opened up in a bridge over Pocono Creek. PennDOT officials discovered the hole last night and noticed they could see right through to the creek below. Work to replace the Route 33 North Bridge started earlier this month and it had previously been restricted to a single lane. PennDOT officials say the hole resulted from motorists' wear and tear. Since it happpened in the open lane, PennDOT was forced to close the road entirely until emergency repairs could happen. While the repairs are complete now, the concrete needs time to set. PennDOT officials say the bridge will reopen sometime this evening, but it will remain a single lane near Bartonsville. The project is expected to be completed in March.

RAPTOR SECURITY SYSTEM
August 25, 2014

A new security system is in place at Northampton Area School District. It's called the Raptor Security System. It scans your ID and stores your information in a secure server. The new security system in the district is available thanks to a $25,000 grant. The superintendent tells us it cross references a person's information with the state's sex offender registry. Parents we spoke to are supportive of the new security system.

LEHIGH VALLEY AIRSHOW BACK AGAIN WITH NEW ACTS
August 22, 2014

The Lehigh Valley Airshow is back for another year with new acts and old favorites to wow the crowd.
Organizers expect this year's show to be bigger and better, adding and changing some things.
This year, instead of one entrance there will be five to alleviate traffic. The spectator area has been shifted for better viewing. There will be 21 vendors, about 25 aircrafts participating and 4 demonstration teams.
Take SOT Runs.. 0:18 .."
"Last year we had black diamonds they've come back, but this year we also have the wing walker, we're excited about the british airspace jet, the harrier, which is the only privately owned carrier in the world.
People will be able to get up close and personal with different aircrafts and classic cars. A lamborgini and a motorcycle will even be racing jets. Some of the money raised at this event will go toward a scholarship for students interested in aviation.

ANOTHER FIRE IN MONROE COUNTY
August 22, 2014

A well-known East Stroudsburg business is destroyed by an early morning fire. It's the third fire to occur in 24 hours and one of many over the past two months.
A crowd of family and friends look on in disbelief at what's left of Weiss Auto Body on Progress Street in East Stroudsburg. Those first on scene believe the fire started on the left side of the building and worked its way around. Owner Jim Weiss also has a towing company and says he's used to getting calls from the 911 Control Center, but he never expected to get a 4am call telling him his business is on fire. Now Weiss is just concentrating on what's next for his business that's been there for 25 years.
Weiss employs five people and he hopes to rebuild immediately. Weiss says his towing company won't be affected.
The fire marshal on scene today tells us the cause of the fire remains under investigation.

FIRE LEAVES WATER DAMAGE AT STROUDSBURG BUILDING
August 21, 2014

Residents and businesses are displaced, after a fire this morning at the Holland Thread Mill Building on lower main st.
Occupants say there's quite a bit of water damage, but no one was hurt.
Firefighters say the blaze started in the kitchen of a second floor apartment. The tenant believes the fire may've been caused by an electrical issue.
One occupant says her uncle is a firefighter and he told her the tenant left a book on top of her stove burner, which caused the fire.
The fire chief says they're investigating what caused the fire.

TAMAQUA RESIDENTS COUNTING THE DAYS
August 20, 2014

A long awaited bridge project in Schuylkill County will be done soon. Concerns about work on the Route 209-East Broad Street Bridge over the Little Schuylkill River in Tamaqua started in the spring of 2013. Now a year and a half later, residents just want to breathe a sigh of relief. Tamaqua Borough Council officials tell us the work is right on schedule to be done before November and there's only roadwork left to do.

LEHIGHTON MAN KILLED IN CRASH
August 20, 2014

A Lehighton man is dead after a head-on crash with a truck this morning in Luzerne County. The accident happened just after 4:30 am on Route 940 in Foster Township. Police say 34-year-old Jamin Zimmerman crossed the centerline and crashed into a tractor trailer. Zimmerman was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the truck, David Kleppinger of Palmerton, was not hurt.

JIM THORPE SCHOOL DISTRICT MEETS WITH YOUTH CAMP
August 19, 2014

With less than a week before school starts, Jim Thorpe officials are still working on an agreement with the Youth Services Agency. In June, officials at the center announced they had been in discussions with Jim Thorpe School District for over a year. Y-S-A is looking for the district to provide more financial support to allow continuation of the on-site school at its residential treatment center in Penn Forest Township. If they can't get that, their students could attend Jim Thorpe schools. Today the Jim Thorpe superintendent, Brian Gasper, released a statement saying the district and Y-S-A representatives met last week. Olympian officials met Friday to review and offer adjustments to the potential agreement. No details of the agreement are available to News 13. But Gasper says the district is hopeful there will be a mutual agreement in place soon. Jim Thorpe students go back to school Monday.

PARENTS IN COURT FOR CHILD'S TEETH
August 19, 2014

A Northampton County couple is in court after they're accused of not getting their daughter adequate dental care. In June, Kenneth Wanamaker Junior and Jessica Hoffman, both of Lehigh Township, were charged with endangering the welfare of a child. Their 6-year-old daughter was diagnosed with severe dental disease. She was scheduled for surgery but the couple allegedly failed to take her twice. Wanamaker and Hoffman were in district court today for preliminary hearings. A judge ruled the charges will be upgraded from misdemeanors to felonies. The pair must now face charges in Northampton County Court. Today the judge also revoked Wanamaker's bail saying he wasn't compliant with his bail conditions. Hoffman remains free on bail, but is not to have unsupervised contact with her children. The pair are expected to be in county court in October.

PLAYGROUND CONSTRUCTION PUT ON HOLD AGAIN
August 19, 2014

Today it's silent where the old Resica Community Playground used to be. Volunteers are nowhere to be found, lumber isn't being cut and mulch deliveries still lie untouched. That's because the building of a new playground is no longer starting tomorrow.
Resica Community Playground Co-Coordinator Karen Conway says, "It's a very sad thing. We really wanted to have it up and ready for the new school year for the kids to play on. It would've been a great back to school gift."
Volunteers tore down the playground behind Resica Elementary in June with plans to build a safer one in July. But a counted on donation didn't come through. Now other setbacks have added up pushing this week's construction date far into the future. A lumber supplier didn't deliver on time and there isn't enough money or volunteers.
Conway says the date to build is now set for July 2015 so that the kids are out of school, unless the community lets them down again.
Conway says, "We're hoping the community does come out, that they do volunteer for the committees, that they do step up."
If you would like to donate, there's a Go Fund Me webpage set up for Resica Community Playground. And for more inforemation on upcoming fundraisers or how to get involved in the cause, just contact Conway at 570-807-0602.

RAMSEY REMAINS CLOSED, AFTER PARENT SUIT
August 18, 2014

Parents have been fighting to reopen Ramsey Elementary, after a 5-4 vote by the Stroudsburg School Board in May to close the school in June and Clearview at the end of this year.
Today a judge decided Ramsey should remain closed.
Students who attended the school will now go to Morey, not too far away.
Parents argued the closing process for Ramsey was too quick and there should've been more research done, before making a decision.
School representatives on the other hand argued that no violations were made and it would be a bigger inconvinence to reopen the school now after removing all the resources.
The judge decided it would be too later to put the school back together, before school starts and no rules were broken.

STROUDSBURG SCHOOL PROJECT NEARLY COMPLETE
August 18, 2014

The renovations project taking place at Stroudsburg High School is nearly finished. For the first time since 2010, students won't be greeted this school year by contractors working inside.
Stroudsburg High School students will get to see the new building as a whole this year. Construction phases on the inside are complete. While students saw most of it in May, they will be introduced to some new classrooms when they return August 25th. Superintendent John Toleno says he's happy everything is updated with enough room for both students and all educational programs.
Now the concentration is on completing the outside. Work is currently being done on the high school's sports fields, tennis courts and parking lot. The work is contracted to be done September 2015, but Toleno says he hopes the heavy equipment disappears after November 1st and it's done early.

THE NEXT BIG THING TO COME TO THE POCONOS
August 15, 2014

Camelback Resort in Tannersville will soon always be a splashing good time, from outside to inside. It's called Camelback Lodge and Aquatopia and it'll be the first ski in/ski out indoor waterpark hotel in the Poconos. The $163 million project will be 533,000 square feet with 453 hotel rooms and it's expected to open this coming Spring. The goal is the month of May. For more information or to make a reservation for the Spring opening date, just go to www.camelbackresort.com.

THEIVES TARGET VEHICLES IN STROUDSBURG
August 15, 2014

Stroud Area Regional Police say, several vehicles in Stroudsburg were hit by thieves, early Tuesday morning.
Tyler Metzger and Luis Santos are now facing charges for theft from a motor vehicle, loitering and prowling.
Although police have caught up with these two men, the community is still on high alert. Some neighbors say it's not the first time.
Police say electronic devices, money and a rolex watch are some of the items that were stolen.
About a month ago, there was a similar incident in East Stroudsburg.
Police encourage residents to secure their vehicles and homes. Most of the incidents have involved unlocked vehicles.
Several victims have already retrieved their stolen items. Police are still trying to return more recovered property. If you're a victim contact Stroud Area Regional Police.

CONTROVERSY OVER SIGN ORDINANCE
August 14, 2014

Some Pocono Township business owners are upset over a newly enforced sign ordinance. At least one says he is being unfairly targeted for placing signs and balloons out by the roadway. And some township officials are divided over the sign ordinance. Pocono Township's Board of Commissioners say the original ordinance was passed in 2003 and it was never enforced by the previous board. They're looking to change that but also update it.
Commissioner Jerry Lastowski admits the controversy has been going on for awhile among the township and businesses. He says the township had a meeting for business owners to voice their concerns and says the sign ordinance needs to be revamped. The commissioners have asked the Planning Commission to make a new one. But they're recommending it stays as it is. Only a sign on the building and a permitted sign plaza is allowed.
We're told the businesses have been notified by the zoning officer what they're doing wrong and some have received fines. Vincent's Deli and Catering Owner Vincent Difrancisco says having balloons out got him a $400 fine. He believes he's being discriminated against because other businesses still have theirs out.
Both he and Tom Sforza, Co-Owner of Best Auto Service Center, tell us they don't mind following the rules. They just want the township to be fair and work with them to come up with something everyone can be happy with. They'd be happy with one sign.
Planning Commission Chairman Ronald Swink says they are for business but owners need to follow the rules. Everyone will be fined if they don't. Difrancisco says businesses have already closed because of the new enforcement.
While the Chairman of the Planning Commission doesn't want to make any changes. He says that's just a recommendation and the decision is left up to the commissioners.

BUSINESSES LEFT IN THE DARK FOR WEEKS
August 14, 2014

Business owners in an East Stroudsburg shopping plaza on 209 and Eagle Valley Lane are crying out for power.
They've been in the dark since July 27th when a car hit their building, killing a passenger.
They've been using generators to keep business going, but the frustration is building.
The owner says, he's waiting on the contractor and insurance company, which could take about three weeks or longer to fix the problem.

SLATINGTON AREA CHILD HIT BY CAR DIES
August 13, 2014

A child struck by a car this afternoon in Washington Township, Lehigh County has died from her injuries. It happened just after 3:30 pm in the 4200 block of Mountain Road near Loop Road. Authorities say 21-month-old Farrah Munoz was in front of her house when she was hit by a jeep. The child was flown to the hospital where she was pronounced dead just before 5 pm. Police say 33-yer-old Daniel Watt was the driver of the vehicle. State Police and the Lehigh County Coroner's Office are still investigating.

LOCAL POLICE SEEK AGGRESSIVE DRIVERS
August 13, 2014

Pocono Mountain Regional Police are warning drivers to be on their best behavior. Starting today, police will be on heavy watch for drivers breaking the rules, especially at the five point intersection in Mount Pocono.
If you're stopped, the fine is at least $127, plus points on your license.

CALLING ALL ARTISTS: LARGE CANVAS NEEDS FILLING
August 13, 2014

Artists are needed to help paint two towns in Monroe County.
Project Street Art-- the team responsible for beautifying an empty lot eyesore on Main Street in Stroudsburg is expanding to part two. Ten different mural locations are now planned-- seven in Stroudsburg and three in East Stroudsburg.
The contest is already on for who will touch the walls of the buildings, businesses and bridges on the list with creativity. Submissions are pouring in from LA, the Bronx and even Brazil to be one of the 10 chosen artists to splash their designs. Each will then put a team together at each location on September 27th and a giant paint party will take place.
If you'd like to submit a design send an email to stroudsburgstreetart@gmail.com and for more information check out the group's Facebook page at www.facebook.com/projectstreetart.

PROPOSED GAS PIPELINE MAY GO THROUGH CARBON CO.
August 12, 2014

A proposed natural gas pipeline would cut through Northampton and Carbon Counties. PennEast Pipeline Company announced the plans today to construct a 100-mile pipeline to bring natural gas produced in the Marcellus Shale Region to homes and businesses in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The pipeline would begin in Luzerne County and end at Tansco's Trenton-Woodbury interconnection in New Jersey. PennEast will begin preliminary engineering studies in the coming months, along with a formal application before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. If all local, state and federal approvals are timely approved, construction of the pipeline could begin in 2017.

MAN SUSPECTED OF DUI HITS PARKED LEHIGHTON CARS
August 12, 2014

A Lehighton man is suspected of driving under the influence after he hits several parked cars. The incident happened Monday night around 6:30 in the 200 block of South Fourth Street. Police say 56-year-old Scott Smale was taken for a blood test after striking six cars. No one was hurt in the incident but two cars were seriously damaged. Lehighton Police are still investigating.

LOCAL TEEN RAISES MONEY FOR CANCER RESEARCH
August 12, 2014

A Local teen who lost his grandmother to breast cancer is using his talents to help with cancer research. He published a book about three weeks ago and now he's putting a golf fundraiser together at Shawnee Inn.
If you would like to donate log on to Golfgrandmaandme.com. The tournament will take place October 5th at 1pm.

POCONO TOWNSHIP BUSINESSES SURVIVING NEARBY BRIDGE PROJECT
August 12, 2014

Just a month ago we talked to dismayed business owners when northbound traffic on Route 611 was detoured onto Bartonsville Avenue. Today we talked to the same business owners to see if things are better or worse.
Businesses along Route 611 tell us they're thankful for the great job Penndot is doing. A completely different outlook to what they said at the start of the detour on July 24th. They were worried their busiest month of the year just wouldn't happen. While business has been negatively affected as the structurally deficient bridge over the Pocono Creek is fixed, those at Dale's Cafe, Knights Inn and Giant Floor say it's a whole lot better than what they anticipated. Dale's Cafe Owner Lee Crowell feared the closed lane would cut his business in half and he'd be forced to lay off staff. Luckily that's not the case. The businesses hope PennDOT stays on schedule to be done in October that way they say business will remain as it is and they'll be ok.

FATAL FRIDAY RUSH TWP. CRASH
August 11, 2014

A Brockton man is killed in a Friday evening crash in Rush Township. Police say 28-year-old Zachary Hess lost control of a Honda motorcycle while driving on Route 54 in Hometown. He crashed into several trees. Officers say he was not wearing a helmet. Witnesses say they saw sparks coming from Hess's motorcycle before he crashed. Police are still investigating that fatal accident.

DRIVERS PICK UP SPEED ON PARTS OF INTERSTATE 380
August 11, 2014

The State Department of Transportation has given drivers the ok to go a little bit faster in parts of Monroe and Lakawanna counties.
Penn Dot workers spent this morning and afternoon taking the old 65mph signs out and putting the new 70 mph signs in, starting at exit 8 of interstate 380.
Originally, Penn Dot planned to start the new speed limit in Mount Pocono, but now it starts in Tobyhanna and goes to I-84.
State Representative, Mario Scavello, asked Penn Dot officials to reconsider that area of Monroe county, because of upcoming Kalahari construction.
Right now Penn Dot officials say they want to see how this goes, then they may look at raising speed limits in other areas.

UPDATE ON FIVE LOAF HOUSE
August 11, 2014

A building established to help those in need is making huge strides in Tobyhanna Township. Today, the former Lake House Restaurant is once again serving food, but now as a pantry called Five Loaf House in Pocono Pines. And church members are hoping it becomes so much more with the community's assistance.
Volunteers are working hard today and will be, again tomorrow distributing food to people in need at the Five Loaf House. Pocono Lake Wesleyan Church purchased the foreclosed Lake House Restaurant a year and a half ago to be a permanent home for the Top of the Mountain Ecumenical Council Food Pantry. We were there when the transformation began and now it's working out perfectly.
Food distributions take place the second Monday and Tuesday of every month. And it's currently helping up to 200 families representing around 530 people. Those qualifying receive a food supplement that makes all the difference. Community members are also able to bring home donated clothes and household items. But the great system in place wouldn't be possible without the great volunteers.
Community support has been wonderful. People are not only donating the clothes but are also helping to donate extra food. But more assistance is needed. The church is currently in the process of raising funds to replace 28 windows and siding on the second floor of the building. The goal is to make it be a homeless resource center where people in need can also stay there. For more information or to donate to the project, just go to their website at fiveloafhouse.org.

STATE POLICE INVESTIGATE ABDUCTION ATTEMPTS
August 8, 2014

State Police are on the lookout for two hispanic males in their early to mid thirties, who may be driving a blue and gray, possibly metallic 4 door sedan. Sgt. Joseph Racho from Fern Ridge State Police says, the individuals stopped by two children and asked them if they wanted a ride. Racho says one of the suspects has a widows peak hairline. The mother of one of children has posted a warning message on facebook that has been shared several times. In the post by the concerned mother she also mentions a second incident in Sierra View, involving two men with a similar description, but in a green pick up truck.
If your kids are going to play outside police recommend you always have someone watching them, if not have them make a lot of noise to alert someone if they're approached.
While State Police are investigating the incident at Sierra View they have only been made aware of a suspicious vehicle spotted there. No kids were actually targeted.
Sgt. Racho says, they received a couple calls on the blue and gray vehicle being spotted and he believes those reports were mixed up with the green pickup truck reported.
If you have any further information for police, contact Fern Ridge State Police at (570)646-2271.

SUMMIT HILL BOROUGH FIRE
August 8, 2014

Today at least 10 local fire companies responded to a fully engulfed summer home on Laurel Drive, also known as Route 902. Luckily no one was staying there at the time. The blaze started around noon at the five acre property that has a pool and what was once an "L" shaped residence. Fire company tanks drew water from nearby Mauch Chunk Lake in the rural area. Fire officials tell us the cause of the blaze remains under investigation.

ABANDONED ANIMALS ON THE RISE
August 7, 2014

Two cats and nine kittens were found jammed in a tiny carrier this week, behind the Coolbaugh Township Firehouse.
Firefighters found homes for five of them. The rest are being taken care of by Creature Comforts, until they can find homes.
The cats are in pretty good condition, but the smallest one has an eye infection.
Sherri Frisbie from Creature Comforts says, they've also taken in abandoned dogs.
A pit bull and shepard mix were brought in Tuesday, after being found abandoned near Alpine Mountain.
Alpine Mountain owner found another two dogs on his property a few weeks ago. He says shelters were full at the time, but he was able to find them homes.
and there's more...
Three others were found since the weekend.
Two were found near Saylors Lake and the other near the Saylorsburg Haunted House.
The sooner shelter officials can find homes for these animals, the sooner they can help more. If you would like to adopt contact Creature Comforts, located in Saylorsburg or AWSOM in Stroudsburg.


FRESH START FOR BUSINESS DEVASTATED BY FIRE
August 7, 2014

The owners of a Stroudsburg business hit by fire a month ago are getting a fresh start. Instead of cakes and cupcakes, the focus is on a different concoction.
While plans to rebuild Kitchen Chemistry on Main Street will hopefully have it up and running again by the holidays. Owner Lisa Diemer has something to be excited about now that was luckily already in the works before the tragedy happened. Pocono Soap- a one-of-a-kind shop that will feature everything local and homemade including body care products, hand-crafted gifts, soap supplies, classes and birthday parties. Pocono Soap is located in Courthouse Square and its grand opening will be tomorrow and Saturday.

POCONO FAMILY YMCA'S 100TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION
August 6, 2014

Today Monroe County Commissioners recognized Pocono Family YMCA's 100th Anniversary and presented a resolution commemorating the organization's community effort. While the official date of the anniversary already passed in July, a community celebration is happening this weekend. The Centennial Fitness Fest is this Saturday from 10am to 5pm at Stroudsburg High School's Stadium. It's for families, kids and adults of all ages. There will be class demonstrations, field day type activities, raffles, games, vendors and food. If you'd like to participate, you can preregister at the YMCA's front desk or just show up and pay at the stadium on Saturday. Adults are $10 and kids are $5.

SCHUYLKILL COUNTY BABY DEATH
August 5, 2014

State Police are investigating the death of a baby girl in Schuylkill County. The infant was found in a trash bag around 12:30 this morning. A resident on Winfield Drive in Blythe Township made the discovery and contacted police. 22-year-old Tara Lynne Patanavage of Middleport was taken into custody and charged with endangering the welfare of a child and concealing the death of a child among other charges. Her bail was set at $250,000 and she was sent to the Schuylkill County Prison. An autopsy on the infant is scheduled for tomorrow.

MAIL STOLEN FROM POST OFFICE BOXES
August 5, 2014

Mail is stolen from several drop boxes in Lehigh and Northampton Counties. Lehigh Township Police say they were notified this morning that a mail drop box outside the Cherryville post office on Blue Mountain Drive was one of the boxes targeted. Someone vandalized the box and stole mail overnight. According to the US Postal inspector for the region, mailbox break-ins have also been reported in Northampton, Catasaqua, Coplay, Whitehall and Laury's Station. Police recommend anyone who may have used these drop off locations take proper measures to safeguard any credit or personal information that may have been stolen.

MAN APPROACHES CHILD IN WEATHERLY
August 4, 2014

Police are asking Weatherly residents to be on the lookout after a man approaches a little girl. Officers say the incident happened yesterday afternoon around 3 on Hudsondale Street. A silver vehicle pulled up alongside a 7-year-old girl who was riding her bike. The man tried to get the girl inside his car. The child said no. As she was riding away the male driver kept yelling and said he would give her a ride home. The child does not know the man and never saw him before. She made it home and ran inside. The man drove off toward Route 93. The suspect is described as a white male around 30 to 40 years old. He was driving a silver car with a white sticker in the rear window. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Weatherly Borough Police Department.

ANOTHER WEEKEND STROUDSBURG FIRE AFFECTING BUSINESS AND TENANTS
August 4, 2014

Just a month ago and only two blocks away on Main Street in Stroudsburg, a fire broke out inside an apartment building. This time only one business is damaged but authorities say 17 people are out of their homes. Fire officials say the fire started Saturday in a second floor apartment above Pocono Sew and Vac around 9:30 in the morning.
Today Pocono Sew and Vac employees are thankful to be conducting business across the street at what was once Main Street TV and Appliance. They tell us the owners allowed them to set up shop while the fire has left their place damaged by water and smoke.
Pocono Sew and Vac Service Technician Joe Jermaine says, "I can't say that we're going to sell anything today because of insurance purposes, I don't think we can bring anything over. But if you need repairs picked up or if you want to bring in something for repair, we will be happy to do that today."
Residents can't believe this is the second apartment building fire to happen within a couple of weeks. The first was at Kitchen Chemistry. Real Estate Broker Jack Muehlhan says the four responding fire departments did a great job stopping the blaze. He hopes the building is repaired as soon as possible.
Pocono Sew and Vac is keeping a positive outlook too. This is their third location and the third time they've been struck by fire from a neighboring property.
Jermaine says, "The owners tell us and encourage everyone that we're going to get right back on our toes and we'll be better yet."
Pocono Sew and Vac Employees say to check their website and facebook page for how they're going to proceed from here. Fire marshalls tell us the fire doesn't seem suspicious at this time and it remains under investigation.

NEW JIM THORPE BRIDGE TO BE NAMED IN MEMORY OF SOLDIER
August 1, 2014

The new Route 903 bridge in Jim Thorpe will be named in honor of a Carbon County soldier killed in Iraq. Sergeant Andrew Baddick died on September 23, 2003 while trying to save a fellow soldier from his submerged military vehicle. Local legislators announced the bridge currently under construction over the Lehigh River will be named for Baddick. He was a graduate of Jim Thorpe Area High School and grew up along the Lehigh River. The new bridge will replace the Jim Thorpe Memorial Bridge which was built in 1953. The $28 million project is scheduled to be completed in the summer of 2017.

FIRST-EVER POCONO LATIN FEST
August 1, 2014

The Poconos is known for holding festivals celebrating and sharing various cultures with the community. But there's never been one for Latinos, until now. The first-ever Pocono Latin Fest is happening tomorrow at Alpine Mountain Resort and Ski Area from 11am to 7pm. There will be everything from food vendors, to live music, children's activites and there will even be zumba to get people excited about the Latin culture. Admission is free and you're recommended to come out for a fun time with Latin flair. For more information just go to the event's website at www.poconolatinfest.com.

FLAGGER STRUCK AND KILLED, MAHANOY TWP.
July 31, 2014

A flagger for a tree service company is hit by a vehicle and killed while working in Mahanoy Township this afternoon. The accident happened around 1 o'clock on Morea Road just west of Route 54. State Police say 66-year-old William Hoffman of Pottsville was directing traffic when he was struck by a van. Hoffman died at the scene. 67-year-old Cathy Moss of Barnesville was driving the vehicle. She was not hurt. State Police are still investigating.

LEHIGHTON METH LAB BUST
July 31, 2014

A Kunkletown man is arrested in Lehighton for a suspected mobile meth lab. According to court documents, someone called police saying 26-year-old Matthew Haydt brought items inside a house that are used to manufacture meth. When police went to the South First Street home, Haydt ran out the back door but was tackled by an officer. The patrolman by an officer. The patrolman says he knew Haydt from a previous overdose this month and also knew Haydt had an outstanding warrant for his arrest. Haydt first denied a cooler and equipment to manufacture the drugs at the home where his. He later told police everything belonged to him, and he was planning to manufacture meth later that night but police arrived prior to him starting the cooking process. He is charged with multiple offenses and was taken to jail.

THREE RECEIVE FUNDING TO PRESERVE LAND
July 31, 2014

Applications to purchase land for open space are in for Paradise, Chestnuthill and Smithfield Townships.
Chestnuthill is seeking 54 acres, Paradise $175 and Smithfield Township $167 acres.
Monroe County Commissioner, Suzanne McCool says they've preserved over 20,000 acres of land and green space, with the new applications.
So far McCool says, they've probably spent about $90 million, but the money is running out.
Chestnuthill and Paradise received $50,000 grants from the county and Shawnee Valley, located in Smithfield Township approved for $26,000.
Although the county has given the ok for grant funding officials say, it's a possibility the land won't be purchased if the townships don't come up with the remaining funds for purchase.

CARNIVAL CONTROVERSY CONTINUES IN MIDDLE SMITHFIELD TOWNSHIP
July 31, 2014

Middle Smithfield Township officials held a public meeting today to take the next step in stopping a carnival along Route 209 from operating. The reason-- They say the property owner and carnival operator didn't have a permit for the amusement event. But the carnival continues to go on as scheduled.
Property Owner John Petrizzo maintains his stance today that more is going on behind the scenes of Middle Smithfield Township officials wanting to shut down a carnival on property he owns.
Petrizzo says, "This action is prejudicial and it's also violating my rights to use my property."
Cease and desist papers have been served alleging there's no carnival permit, but it was open again last night. The township held a public meeting this morning to vote on continuing with a legal injunction.
Supervisor Mike Dwyer says, "Every property owner has to follow the same rules, every business owner has to follow the same rules so we have to do what we have to do."
But Petrizzo says he's being singled out. According to him Bushkill Group got away without having a permit and still is.
Petrizzo says, "This bridge was being used to ferry people across Sand Hill Creek to the carnival site [when it was there in June.]"
There's also a dump site on Fernwood's property that he says the township has known about for six months. The township solicitor said no comment, it involves litigation. Township officials say Petrizzo was only supposed to present information about the motion on the floor-- to which Petrizzo says he has a flea market permit that allows for the carnival parking and vendors on that parking. Zoning Officer and Building Code Official Shawn McGlynn says this is a special event that requires its own permit, and it's something that needs to be officially planned out.
McGlynn, "Where the different rides are, how it can meet the parking requirements, where the bathrooms will be located, all the things that would demonstrate to the township that the fair can be conducted in a safe manner."
While officials say Petrizzo could apply for a permit at any time, it wouldn't fix the problem now. We're told the development of the plan could take over a month. Township supervisors voted to get the court involved to ask the parties to stop the operation until everything can be sorted out.
Dwyer says, "There was a statement made today that the property owner was working with the vendor for over a year and never inquired about a permit so I think that's poor planning by the property owner."
But no matter who is right or wrong, or what decision is made, carnival officials tell us the show plans to go on.
S&S Amusement Owner Stephen Swika Jr. says, "I intend to be open tonight, yes, until they come and arrest me and carry me away."
The township filed their request this afternoon and a judge signed the injunction. A hearing will take place tomorrow in Courtroom 2. The carnival is scheduled to run tonight, but whether it will finish its run will be determined at tomorrow's hearing.

CARNIVAL ISSUES ENSUE IN MIDDLE SMITHFIELD TOWNSHIP
July 30, 2014

Issues continue for a carnival in Monroe County that's been ordered to cease and desist. The property owner hosting the carnival on Route 209 is also the longest standing business owner in Middle Smithfield Township. He claims the township is corrupt and unfriendly to business. This statement comes after he and the carnival operator were both served cease and desist orders before the carnival got underway last night.
Business Owner John Petrizzo says there's a bigger issue behind Middle Smithfield Township officials wanting to shut down a carnival on property he owns. Petrizzo was served papers yesterday alleging he doesn't have a permit and should stop the operation right away. The carnival went on as scheduled last night and Petrizzo says it will continue through its scheduled August 2nd date, because Petrizzo insists his paperwork is in order.
Petrizzo says, "I have a flea market permit and I have spaces for over 100 vendors, and that's what's on the property now--vendors."
The township zoning officer was unavailable for comment today. While Supervisor Annette Atkinson won't speak on his behalf, she offers the township code goes against Petrizzo's reasoning. And the township needs to address complaints made by others following the rules.
Atkinson says, "Different uses need different kinds of permits so if I was a bookstore, I can't suddenly serve eggs, you know that would make me a restaurant."
Petrizzo feels attacked by the township because they helped find a location for the carnival.
Petrizzo says, "When contacted by S&S Amusement, they showed every piece of property except mine."
Atkinson says private property wasn't shown and they focused on safe areas. Petrizzo maintains in the last 20 years he's received all kinds of township violations. He claims none of them have been valid. If the carnival is shutdown, Petrizzo says an added tourist attraction is lost and businesses in the area lose that added revenue. He's seen it happen in the past.
Petrizzo says, "Poor leadership like this results in 50 businesses being closed from East Stroudsburg to Marshalls Creek."
But township officials say that's simply not the case.
Atkinson says, "Someone who's unhappy because they didn't get what they want, it's not unusual to hear them complain or say things of that nature. But I would just point to the Economic Development Committee and other businesses that are saying the exact opposite."
Tomorrow morning at eight a public meeting is scheduled for township officials to consider continuing with a legal injunction-- meaning the court will then ask the parties to stop what they're doing until everything can be sorted out.

UNEMPLOPYMENT DOWN, JOBS UP
July 30, 2014

Monroe County unemployment numbers are in for June, showing a decrease. According to reports released by the state Department of Labor and Industry, the unemployment rate is currently at 6.9%. In June of last year, officials say it was almost 10.
Officials say about 1200 jobs were added in June and the job market is growing the most in manufacturing and tourism.
Careerlink has had nearly 300 new job postings since last Monday.

LEHIGH TOWNSHIP CRASH, RT. 145
July 29, 2014

One person is flown to the hospital and three others hurt in a 2-car crash this morning in Northampton County. The accident happened just after 9 am on Route 145 in Lehigh Township. Witnesses tell police 51-year-old David Wanamaker of Slatington was trying to turn left from Route 145 onto Washington Drive when his Chevy Impala collided with the other car. Wanamaker and his passenger, 25-year-old Andrew Warner of Kunkletown, were both taken to the hospital. The driver of the other vehicle, 78-year-old Leroy Goldberg of Lehighton, was flown to the hospital. His passenger, 74-year-old Audrey Goldberg, was also hurt and taken to the hospital by ambulance. Lehigh Township Police are investigating.

KIDDER TWP. MAN CHILD PORN CHARGES
July 29, 2014

46-year-old Todd Kowar was indicted today by a federal grand jury on charges of producing and possessing child pornography. The grand jury alleges Kowar persuaded and induced a minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing images of such conduct. The indictment alleges that Kowar committed the crimes between 2008 and December 2012. He faces a maximum sentence of 40-years in jail if convicted of both charges.

FIST BUMPS LESS GERMY THAN HANDSHAKES
July 29, 2014

A new study from the United Kingdom shows that our traditional handshake may not be the safest way to greet someone. According to the findings from the team at Aberystwyth University, shaking hands spreads 10 times as many bacteria as a high-five and 20 times as much as a 'fist bump.' However, most doctors believe most of the germs that are transmitted aren't harmful to humans. A good regiment of hand-washing should keep you clean and safe.

RESTAURANT BURNS, COMMUNITY IN SHOCK
July 28, 2014

A community is in shock today over the loss of a popular eatery in Monroe County's West End. Fire destroyed the Luna Rossa restaurant and bar on Route 209 in Gilbert early yesterday. Today, vehicle after vehicle pulls up along the side of the road stunned by what's left of the Luna Rossa Cafe, which has gone by several names over the decades. Some people try to get a closer look, while others take pictures of what they call a landmark in the area.
Firefighters arrived on scene Sunday morning around five, about two hours after it closed to put out the blaze.
The Cafe's Head Chef Michael Thornton is emotional as he came back today for another look. He tells us he's been an employee for six years and it's a depressing day as realization sets in. Thornton says this was home for over 24 employees and patrons were treated like family. Now everyone is out of a job.
Thornton says Sunday seemed like a nightmare, but he's thankful for firefighters effort and that no one was hurt. Residents tell us it's going to be greatly missed and they just hope it comes back.
The property has been listed for sale for the past year. The owner wasn't available for comment today, but Thornton speaks on his behalf and says he plans to rebuild as soon as possible.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

DANCING IN THE STREET
July 28, 2014

People in Slatington, Lehigh County, are celebrating an anniversary by dancing in the street. They're going to be part of a "flash mob" to perform during the town's 150th Anniversary Celebration. A flash mob is when a group of people gathers at a public place and performs a random act, like dancing. The owner of Rhythm & Sole Dance Center on Main Street came up with the idea. There's one more practice scheduled tomorrow night at the dance studio. If you can't make it, you can still be part of the flash mob. Check out the tutorial on the studio's Facebook page. Then show up by the fireman's statue at 4PM on Saturday August, 16th.

BELTZVILLE RE-OPENS
July 25, 2014

The beach at Beltzville State Park in Carbon County re-opens to swimming after another closure. They found safe bacterial counts in water samples taken on July 23rd. The beach has been closed since July 16th.

BUCKET TRUCK ACCIDENT LEHIGH TWP., NORTHAMPTON COUNTY
July 25, 2014

A Wind Gap man is thrown from a bucket truck after an accident this morning in Lehigh Township. Police say 55-year-old Charles Austin was trimming a tree at a home in the 700 block of Walnut Drive. Around 10:30 am, the bucket truck he was using either rolled or slid down a grass hill where he was working and slammed into a tree. He was flown to the hospital for treatment.

CONCERNS OVER THE SOON TO BE FASTEST ROAD IN MONROE COUNTY
July 25, 2014

PennDOT recently announced it's raising the speed limit on part of the Interstate 380 to seventy miles per hour. But most of the members of Monroe County's Safe 80 Task Force spoke out today that they are not on board.
The five mile per hour increase on 21 miles of 380 is from the Interstate 84 junction in Lackawanna County south to the Mount Pocono exit.
Members of the Safe 80 Task Force don't see the point and they don't understand why that particular corridor was chosen with so many other conflicting issues that can easily make it unsafe for drivers like deer and bear impacts that are huge in that area, fog, wintertime, ice and it's up on a plateau. Chairman Jim Becker says it's going to take away a person's ability to avoid an accidents.
PennDOT Officials say they're also sensitive to those issues and they will be a focus after the speed limit signs are installed the week of August 11th.
PennDOT District 5 Traffic and Operations Engineer Dennis Toomey says, "This is a pilot and there will be studies done."
State Representative Mario Scavello is also worried about the traffic that will result from the new Kalahari Resort. PennDOT Officials say it is already accounted for but Scavello says there's a meeting next week that could change plans to increase the speed limit.

LOCAL STUDENTS SHARE TALENTS WITH BROADWAY
July 25, 2014

Students from Pocono Mountain and East Stroudsburg School Districts are taking the stage with broadway stars tomorrow night to present the production, "Come To The Cabaret: A Celebration Of Kander And Ebb. Students spent this morning and afternoon rehearsing for the last time, before their debut.
This Come to The Cabaret performance happens tomorrow night at Pocono Mountain East High School. Sunday morning there'll be a jazz brunch and Sunday night a shuffle concert will be held. To buy tickets or to check out the schedule, log on to their website at BuckHillFest.org. The festival runs from Saturday to August 10th.

LIFEGUARD SHORTAGE
July 24, 2014

Mauch Chunk Lake is in need of more lifeguards. The public isn't in danger, but officials say staffing all shifts is a challenge. The park usually staffs ten lifeguards. This year they're manning shifts with only six. Carbon County Commissioners are already thinking of how they can avoid a shortage next year and are considering raising the hourly rate. Despite the lifeguard shortage, park officials tell us they expect to have a successful year.

BRIDGE DETOUR CONCERNS IN POCONO TOWNSHIP
July 24, 2014

Businesses along Route 611 say the detouring today of northbound traffic onto Bartonsville Avenue got off to a rocky start. While it's something they've been expecting for a long time as part of the project to repair the structurally deficient bridge over the Pocono Creek-- the official start today isn't reassuring their concerns with how the construction is going to go.
All the businesses are worried how they'll be affected with just southbound traffic continuing to use Route 611. And business owners say this construction is going hurt way more now that it's happening during their busiest month of the year. They tell us it was supposed to start in April. Press Officer Sean Brown for PennDOT says, "All schedules were subject to change and based on what the weather was. We had a rough winter and this was when the construction was able to go into the detour pattern."
PennDOT officials say the project is right on schedule to be done in October and they're doing everything they can to help the situation. The detour will be 24/7 but work is only contracted to be done during the day.

DRIVER CITED AFTER HITTING BICYCLIST
July 23, 2014

A Tamaqua man is cited after police say he hit a bicyclist with his pick-up truck this afternoon in East Brunswick Township. According to police, 44-year-old Harry Zaprazny of New Ringgold was riding his bike on Route 895 when he was struck from behind by a pick-up truck heading in the same direction. Zaprazny was thrown into the grass. He suffered a cut but refused medical transport to the hospital. Troopers say 25-year-old Michael Kemmerer is being cited for hitting the bicyclist.

FIREMEN'S DRILL TOWER DEMOLISHED
July 23, 2014

The Carbon County Firemen's Association Drill Tower is now a thing of the past. The long standing tower was demolished yesterday. Crews spent the day cleaning up the rubble.
Workers first punched out blocks from the bottom sections of the four-story tower. Next, they hooked about 60-feet of chain around the structure and yanked it with an excavator. Officials closed the doors to the drill tower after an inspection in November deemed it unsafe.

READY TO START SCHOOL IN A BRAND NEW CAMPUS
July 23, 2014

The brand new Northampton Community College on Route 715 in Tannersville opened its doors today to its first freshman class. Registration and orientation is in full-swing at the 72 million dollar Monroe Campus. Students enrolling for the fall semester are thrilled seeing their new home today for the first time. The fall semester officially starts August 25th and anyone can register up until then.

TEENS GET A TASTE OF MOTHER NATURE
July 23, 2014

A group of teenagers from the Monroe County Conservation Camp are spending a little time with mother nature this week.
Today they had a few laughs, food, a little fun on the river and hiking.
"If we can expose them to as many different things as possible they can make better decisions both presently and in the future...Some of them have gone on to be environmental engineers and work for state agencies in the environment.
Teens are only allowed to attend the camp once, but many come back as camp counselors. This year's camp ends Saturday. If you're interested in participating next year you can sign up starting in January on their website.

MOVE THE BARRICADES, DRIVERS COMING THROUGH
July 22, 2014

Shafers Schoolhouse Rd. at the underpass of I-80 has been closed for a few weeks now, but some drivers are growing more and more frustrated with the detours.
Some decided to reopen the road themselves to make life easier, which officials say is against the law.
Barricades are back up and officials are hoping these will keep them drivers out. The road is expected to reopen before school starts.

MONROE COUNTY NOW SERVING LATINOS IN A BIGGER WAY
July 22, 2014

Monroe County now has a Latino Countywide Services Partnership. It's in response to better serve the growing Latino community in the Poconos. The Federation of Latinos for Education about the Cultures of Hispanic America or "FLECHA" has secured funding from Monroe County's Grant Office and support from Catholic Social Services to reliably serve the hispanic population.
Now Spainish-speaking people and their families can come to one location at Penn Square Office Park in Stroudsburg to get all the information and referrals they need. The over $27,000 grant provides a part-time bilingual case worker to help hispanics comfortably address any issues they may have with available resources.
For more information or to make an appointment just call 570-517-0892 Monday through Friday.

SLATINGTON ROBBERY INVESTIGATION
July 22, 2014

Slatington Police are investigating what appears to be a robbery at a laundromat in town. Sunday evening police were called to the business for a reported stabbing and robbery. They found a woman bleeding from the head. Further investigation shows the woman was not stabbed, but may have hit her head. The victim was treated at the hospital. Police believe she's already been released. Officers are now treating the case as a robbery and are following leads at this time.

ATV CHASE ARREST IN JIM THORPE
July 22, 2014

A Jim Thorpe man faces multiple charges after fleeing from police on an ATV last week in the borough. State Police say they were helping Jim Thorpe Officers with an aggressive driver detail on Wednesday when they spotted 34-year-old Derrick Feller riding an ATV down Center Street. Troopers had to perform an "induced stop" on Reservoir Road to keep Feller from fleeing further. When he was told to get off the vehicle, he allegedly put the ATV into reverse to flee again. Feller was then tasered but still resisted arrest. Once he was taken into custody, officers found a concealed loaded pistol, a small amount of marijuana and drug paraphernalia on Feller. He's been charged with numerous offenses.

ALPINE MOUNTAIN BLOCKS OFF ACCESS
July 21, 2014

Residents of Price Township Community have been using an access road to Alpine Mountain Ski Resort as a short cut to Route 447 for years.
Now there's a new owner of the ski area and that access road has been blocked off.
Residents at Timber Hill Community want the road back open.
The owner plans to meet with the Timber Hill Community Association Friday. He's hoping they can reach a solution.

SOLUTION TO MONROE COUNTY RESIDENTS' COMPLAINTS
July 21, 2014

It's about the irritating traffic backup that happens at the intersection at 715 and Sullivan Trail near The Crossings Outlets in Tannersville. A right turn signal is now in place to Kim Markou's delight. Back in March we reported the Pocono Township Resident created a handmade sign and posted it telling people they could turn right on red. Markou was fed up with people not abiding by the Pennsylvania law and the traffic backup that ensued because of it. She requested official signage be posted reminding people they can turn right on red, but this new signal provides more than just a quick fix.
District Five Press Officer Ron Young of PennDOT says,"Do that movement in a protected set-up, meaning all the other traffic movements that would conflict with what they're doing will be stopped, while they have they right turn arrow."
At the intersection today we witnessed a constant flow of traffic. PennDOT offficials tell us the traffic signal modification is a result of the new Monroe Northampton Community College Campus. The campus needed access to the state road so they got a permit throught PennDOT. Young says, "As part of that, they have to regulate any traffic that they generate, regulate the community impact that traffic generates on the roadway system."
People we talked to today agree with Markou that they couldn't be happier.

CONSERVATION DISTRICT REPRESENTATIVE TAKES HEAT
July 18, 2014

A representative from the Monroe County Conservation Districrt is taking heat for a comment he made involving the Kalahari Resort, currently under construction.
Back in January, the Conservation District Manager, Craig Todd said that Kalahari had their pants down, which has caused all the fuss. He was talking about two pollution violations.
"What that meant was they had a lot of ground exposed, but didn't have their controls in to prohibit sediment pollution from the swiftwater creek," said Todd.
Now board members are working on a new policy that will change how information is released to the public.
What the conservation board will decide for the new policy in unknown. As for Kalahari, Todd says violations have been corrected.

TROUBLE BREWING IN YOUR BACKYARD?
July 18, 2014

A forest pest known as the Gypsy Moth may be coming back in full force next year. People are seeing them in their yards now and are concered. And they shouldn't be ignored because they can cause a great deal of damage to your entire property, including losing trees completely as time goes by. Right now, they're making their egg masses that are going to be hatching in the Spring. The caterpillars that come out are going to eat the trees. Co-Owner of Pocono Tick and Skeeter Control Jacqui Hakim says a full-size Gypsy Moth Caterpillar can eat one-square-foot of leaf surface a day.
While PA DCNR District Forester Tim Dugan confirms many have died off from a natural bacteria and fungus, the few dry spells we've experienced allowed a portion of the population to live. Dugan says the Bureau of Forestry is monitoring it right now and they've noticed next year Gypsy Moths may be a huge problem.
Dugan says, "The indications are that we may have a spray program next year if the budget and funds are available."
Hakim says there's nothing to do now except to look around your yard for the brown splotches of eggs on trees to know whether or not you'll have a problem in the spring. If you see a lot, Hakim recommends to get in contact with a sprayer. She says the state has a list available. Just call 570-875-6450.

MAIN STREET EYESORE ON ITS WAY DOWN
July 17, 2014

Dein Properties Officials can't wait to transform the biggest eyesore on Main Street in Stroudsburg into a brand new five-story brick building that will fit-in with the rest of the downtown area. General Manager George Strunk says the first floor will be upscale retail and the second through fifth will be office space and residential apartments. Strunk says the company bought the former Carlton House on Eighth and Main Streets about two years ago with that goal in mind. The property has been condemned since a 2009 fire.
Demolition is expected to start within the next few weeks. Strunk says parts of Eighth Street will be closed from time to time, but doesn't expect Main Street to be affected.

MORE BRIDGE CONSTRUCTION STARTS NEXT WEEK
July 17, 2014

Penn Dot will be closing parts of woodale rd. next week to fix one of the many bridges in need of repair.
Penn Dot Maintenance Manager, Bob Mudrick says they have to fix the beams, pour concrete, rebar and put a new deck on it. The open grate bridge currently has weight restrictions.
Mudrick says, there are other bridges they hope to finish by this summer as well.
One on Silver Springs Blvd on the west end and Traffic Route 715 from tannersville to 115.
In order to fix those roads, Mudrick says they have to get into the creek. During the summer he says the creeks are much lowe, but the weather hasn't been cooperating this year. They can't begin until the water goes down.
Construction on the Woodale Rd. Bridge will begin Monday. They're hoping to have it done before school starts.

LACK OF FUNDS HALT PLAYGROUND BUILD
July 16, 2014

The building of Resica Community Playground in Monroe County is halted due to a lack of funding. Last month volunteers tore down the playground behind Resica Elementary School in Middle Smithfield Township because it was considered unsafe. A newer and safer one was supposed to be built in its place last week, but Volunteer Karen Conway says a counted on $30,000 donation didn't come through from East Stroudsburg School District. That's because the project on school grounds actually needed to be put out to bid under the Pennsylvania School Code.
Volunteers have already raised most of the $130,000 the project needs through grants, fundraisers and the community. They just need your help for the rest. If you would like to donate, there's a Go Fund Me webpage set up for Resica Community Playground and for more information on upcoming fundraisers or how to get involved, just call Conway at 570-807-0602. The playground is expected to be built late August and more volunteers are needed.

VOLUNTEERS CLEAN UP THE OLD HOTEL JONAS
July 15, 2014

The Valor Veteran's Clinic is bringing the Jonas hotel back to life. The structure has been vacant for years, but organizers plan to put it to good use,housing at least 13 veterans.
It needs quite a bit of work, but with a few helping hands, organizers says it's nothing they can't handle.
Volunteers will be cleaning up for the rest of the week from 9 in the mornign to 6 in the evening.
They're looking for carpenters, masons and anyone to donate cement or gravel. Contact the Valor clinic if you would like to help.

WEST NILE VIRUS IN MONROE COUNTY
July 15, 2014

The first case of West Nile Virus is discovered in Monroe County. Vector Control Officials say a mosquito sample from Middle Smithfield Township recently tested positive.
Coordinator Michael Pula says, "We had our first positive mosquito pull come in. It was reported yesterday at 7:14. It was collected at the Winona Lakes Sewage Treatment Plant in Middle Smithfield Township."
So far there are no human cases of West Nile in Pennsylvania this year. Vector Control Officials say the mosquito population isn't as bad this year. But with all the recent excessive rainfall, there's a greater risk for more. Vector Control takes a proactive approach and tries to treat breeding areas before the mosquito larva become adults. And you can help by ridding your property of collected rainfall. Mosquitos breed in standing water.

GRAND OPENING CEREMONY
July 15, 2014

After being in the works for five years, Lehighton State Police have a new home. Dozens turned out today for the grand opening ceremony of the new Lehighton Barraks on Interchange Road in Towamensing Township. Among those present were State Senator John Yudichak and State Representative Doyle Heffley. PA State Police Commissioner, Frank Noonan, thanked troopers for keeping the community safe. The new facility has twice the room as the old one and features a state of the art computer system.

POND EDDY BRIDGE GIVEAWAY
July 15, 2014

The Historic Century old Pond Eddy Bridge is up for grabs to the highest bidder. Penn Dot needs to replace the current bridge for safety reasons, and will offer potential buyers the opportunity to bid on the bridge and preserve it at a new location. Penn Dot says they will move the bridge at no cost, but its the buyers job to maintain it. Anyone interested in purchasing the historic landmark needs to submit a bid to Penn Dot by September 5, 2014.

STORM HITS STROUDSBURG, LEAVING DAMAGE
July 14, 2014

Last night's storm left quite a bit of damage in parts of Stroudsburg.
Many trees came down, landing on roadways, vehicles and even powerlines.
A number of roads were closed, south of Stroudsburg.
The American Red Cross is usually giving help, but today local contractors offered a helping hand, after a tree fell on one of their disaster trailers.
Most of the damage has been cleaned up and roadways are back open. Officials say they're prepared for more possible storm damage tonight or tomorrow.

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HELP
July 14, 2014

An apparent murder-suicide in Banks Township is bringing to light a serious problem in our community, domestic violence. Paula Triano is the Executive Director for the Domestic Violence Service Center in Wilkes-Barre. The center offers help to victims in Luzerne and Carbon counties. She says there are many reasons why victims don't leave an abusive situation. Such as, to protect children involved or lack of money, but she reminds victims there's help. If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic abuse call the hotline 1-800-424-5600. You can make an anonymous call and callers are never forced to take a plan of action.

STATE OFFICIALS CRACK DOWN ON HEROIN
July 11, 2014

The State Attorney General's Office is cracking down on heroin users.
A recent investigation led to the arrest of two people in East Stroudsburg, distributing several packets of heroin.
Officials from the Attorney General's Office say Pennsylavania has the third highest number of heroin users, behind California and Illinois, with an average of 40,000 users.
To fight this epidemic she says they're actively collaborating with county, state, federal and local law enforcement partners.

BELTZVILLE BEACH REOPENED TO SWIMMING
July 11, 2014

Swimming is allowed just in time for the weekend at Beltzville State Park in Carbon County. The beach at the lake was closed on Wednesday after tests showed high bacteria counts in the water. This afternoon state officials say it's back open. Water samples from July 10th came back with acceptable bacterial counts.

MAUCH CHUNK OPERA HOUSE AGREEMENT
July 11, 2014

Harmony is restored at a popular concert venue in Carbon County. Noise complaints against the Mauch Chunk Opera House are costing the concert venue thousands of dollars in fines. Opera house officials and neighbors of the venue say they have reached an agreement in a closed door meeting this week. The owners will continue to soundproof the concert venue and neighbors say they will refrain from calling the Bureau of Liquor Enforcement at this time. Both parties plan to meet again in the near future.

A LABOR OF LOVE MUCH MORE TO REEDERS MAN
July 11, 2014

Debra Elmire never imagined her littlle request would turn into a big 19 year project.
"One day I was sitting looking out my back window and I said, "Honey, wouldn't a little stone wall look very nice over there?"
Stone upon stone has been stacked into the now 1,000 foot wall that stretches around the Elmire's two acre property in Reeders. Love, memories and a lot of local history has gone into building the wall. There's even a time capsule hidden inside the wall. Builder Howard Elmire says there's only a day's work left with about five feet left to cover with stones. The Elmire family just hopes other people will get to enjoy the wall someday as much as they have, and their memories will live on.

UP IN FLAMES
July 10, 2014

A Schuykill County couple is counting their blessings after fire rips through two storage sheds on their property. The fire happened last night on a property on Rabbit Run Rd in West Penn Township. One of the homeowners reported hearing a loud blast, like an explosion, around 9:30PM. He believes lightning started the blaze that leveled two storage sheds just yards away from his home. Firefighters managed to get the blaze under control quickly. No reported injuries in that West Penn Township Blaze.

CRASH IN CARBON PLAZA MALL PARKING LOT
July 10, 2014

A chain reaction crash in the Carbon Plaza Mall parking lot leaves five cars damaged. Mahoning Township Police say 93-year-old Angela Ouly of Nesquehoning driving a red neon, made an illegal left turn into the mall parking lot. She then traveled at an excessive speed through the parking lot and hit a shopping cart pushed by a pregnant woman who fell out of the way. The Neon then struck two unoccupied parked cars. One of those cars then hit another car with two people inside. The shopping cart ran into a fifth vehicle. The pregnant woman was taken to the hospital. No one else was injured. Police say Ouly will be cited for careless driving among other charges.

TRAGIC END TO MISSING WOMAN SEARCH
July 10, 2014

Resident 63-year-old Darlene Bancey of Lakewood Personal Care Home was discovered this morning around 5:40 submerged in the facility's lake. Coroner Bob Allen says about 40 feet from the shoreline. Northeast PA Search and Rescue were called to assist in locating her at 10:51 Wedneday night after the facility on Cherry Lane Road in Stroud Township reported Bancey missing. The 15 member crew, along with dogs found her after an overnight search. Allen pronounced her dead at the scene. Bancey has been a resident of the personal care home for the past year. It's not a locked facility and residents are allowed to come and go as they please. Officials say Bancey was on prescribed medications for her medical and psychiatric conditions before she left. The facility is licensed by the PA Department of Welfare to provide personal care. Our calls to the bureau went unanswered. A forensic autpsy is scheduled for tomorrow at Lehigh Valley Hospital to determine the exact cause of death.

SHAFER SCHOOLHOUSE RD. UNDERPASS CLOSED
July 10, 2014

Drivers will be taking detours around Shafers Schoolhouse Rd. for the next six weeks at the underpass of I-80.
The area has been closed off for a week already and some motorists say the closure is an inconvinence.
Sean Brown from Penn Dot says they found movement in one of the wing walls, used to stabilize the bridge. He's worried the wing wall could collapse onto the roadway.
Traffic over the interstate bridge has not been affected. Brown says the bridge is stable and there's no risk of it collapsing.
Brown says it should take about 6 weeks for steel to arrive for them to make the repairs.


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ESU OFFICIALS CHILLIN FOR CHARITY
July 9, 2014

Four East Stroudsburg University Officials were soaked in ice water today for a social media challenge, growing popular around the nation in colleges and universities.
Northhampton Community College President, Mark Erickson, challenged ESU president, Marcia Welsh to participate in "chillin for charity', a cold water challenge that raises money for cancer research through the Kay Yow Foundation.
Once the videos are recorded the challenger has to post it on youtube within 48 hours. Welsh recruited three others to be soaked in ice water with her.
If the person challenged doesn't get water dumped on them within 48 hours Welsh says, they're required to donate at least $200. If they do, like ESU Officials they donate $50.

LOCAL BUSINESS GOING TO THE DOGS
July 9, 2014

A rescue dog inspires a family to start a new business in Carbon County. It's called "Stray Dog Candles & Stuff." The Hill family, of Lehighton, recently adopted "Butchie" from a shelter. Just like they gave him a new home, they're giving old wine bottles and corks new life. The corks are turned into decorations and old wine bottles are upcycled and filled with soy candles. The candles feature their original labels, but sometimes the Hills encounter bottles with unsalvageable labels. In that case, they use one of their own "Recue Dog" labels. A portion of the proceeds from sales of those products will benefit our local animal shelters.

ONE STEP CLOSER TO HAVING A NEW CHIEF
July 9, 2014

Pocono Mountain Regional Police Chief Harry Lewis now knows the department will be in good hands. Lewis is set to retire August 8th after 21 years of service, 6 years as chief.
Last night the Police Commission majority appointed Lieutenant Christopher Wagner as interm chief until a permanent one is selected.

NOISE COMPLAINTS AGAINST A CONCERT VENUE
July 8, 2014

Noise complaints are costing a well-know concert venue thousands of dollars in fines. Owners of the Mauch Chunk Opera House recently purchased a liquor license. Since then, they've been subjected to the state's noise ordinance, which says a business can be cited if noise is heard off the property. State Representative Doyle Heffley visited the opera house today. He'd like to propose legislation to exempt historic districts from the noise regulation under the Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement. Owners tell us they're trying to comply and have spent over $20,000 on sound proofing the building.

OWL HOLLOW DRIVE CONFUSION
July 8, 2014

Ross Township residents living on Owl Hollow Drive want to know what's planned. Recently they've noticed construction taking place on their road but weren't informed. They tried calling the township but couldn't get a striaght answer. That's why they showed up to the township meeting last night. The supervisors say they just want to pave the road like they're supposed to. But the shoulders being pushed back matter to the residents. We stopped by Lori Smith's house today and she showed us pictures of what previous paving did to her property in 1994. You can see more dug out on her side in the pictures and she's not the only one wanting it to change this time around. Smith says moving the center line back to where it's supposed to be would help fix the problem. Residents also just want it done right. They say there's already a drainage problem and the township isn't addressing it with the repaving. Ross Township Officials tell us they have agreed to have an engineer look at the situation. And they will be paving the road, but no wider than the 20 feet that it is, with the average two feet shoulder on each side.

COMMUNITY REMEMBERS LOCAL POLICE OFFICER
July 8, 2014

Stroud Area Regional Police Officer, Ruben Torres passed away yesterday morning, after a 3 month battle with cancer.
Fellow officers, family and people in the community celebrated his life at Big Daddy's in Bartonsville from 11am-9pm.
A number of items donated from local business were raffled off to raise money and give thanks to the community for all of theh support.
50% of today's proceeds will go to the family.

OVER ONE THOUSAND TICKETS ISSUED ON INTERSTATE
July 8, 2014

Construction on Interstate 84 started only a few months ago, but the number of traffic tickets that have been handed out may shock you. Penn Dot say over one-thousand tickets have been issued to drivers during that short span. Penn Dot says the construction on 84 will be ongoing for years, and don't expect the entire rebuild to be completed until August 2016. They are urge drivers to please remain patient and slow down while driving in the construction zones.

WOMAN IS REPORTEDLY BITTEN BY SNAKE
July 7, 2014

Officials say a woman was reportedly bitten by a venomous snake at the Glen Onoko falls in Jim Thorpe over the weekend. The call came in just after eight, Saturday evening. It took crews about two hours to rescue the woman from the top of the falls. She was taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital. No word on her name or condition at this time.

MAIN STREET BUILDING FIRE
July 7, 2014

A weekend fire at a building on Main Street in Stroudsburg leaves 21 people homeless and closes three businesses. Fire officials tell us the fire started around 2:30 Sunday morning and have determined the flames originated from business Kitchen Chemistry's stand alone air conditioning unit.

ALPINE MOUNTAIN SKI RESORT HIT BY COPPER THIEVES
July 7, 2014

Swiftwater State Police are on the lookout for copper thieves.
Officials say, Alpine Mountain Ski Resort has been targeted at least five times over the last three weeks.
Kevin Fabiano purchased the ski resort earlier this year, after being on the market for about two years.
Fabiano says they're currently renovating to bring the resort back to life. Now they have to fix what's vandalized on top of that.
Fabiano says about a miles worth of copper wiring has been stolen and there's about $100,000 worth of property damage, including wiring to operate lifts and snow making equipment.
The perpetrators even hot wired a backhoe to remove a PPL transformer on the property. Then they used a torch to cut out a hole looking for more wire.

POLICE LOOKING FOR TAMAQUA MAN ACCUSED OF THEFT
July 7, 2014

State Police are looking for a Tamaqua man they say tried to get money for stolen goods. One June 26th, Troopers say 26-year-old Nathan Fritz brought stolen property to J.W. Zaprazny Inc., in East Brunswick Township, to be recycled for cash. The metal that Fritz had was allegedly stolen drainage grates from roadways in East Brunswick and Walker Townships. Criminal charges have been filed, and an arrest warrant has been issued for Fritz. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to contact State Police at Frackville.

BELTZVILLE NEAR-DROWNING
July 7, 2014

Emergency teams responded to a potential drowning at Beltzville Lake on Saturday night. An un-named woman was pulled from the lake's designated swimming area and given CPR by medical officials.
She was then rushed to Blue Mountain Health System's Gnaden Hutten campus for further treatment. Much information is still unknown at the time.

MAHONIG TOWNSHIP CRASH - DUI?
July 7, 2014

Police say a Mahoning Township man may have been driving under the influence when he crashed his car yesterday seriously injuring a passenger. The accident happened around 5:30 am on Orioles Drive. Mahoning Township Police say Pasquale Verrastro Junior was speeding when his car went off the road and hit a tree. A Louisiana man was in the passenger seat and was trapped in the wreckage with major injuries. Lehighton Fire Fighters worked for about an hour to free the man. He was then flown to the hospital. Police say charges against Verrastro are pending the results of a blood test.

FATAL FIRE IN CASS TWP., SCHUYLKILL COUNTY
July 7, 2014

A Schuylkill County man's body is found inside a burning home Sunday. Officials say there were no working smoke detectors in the victim's house. Fire fighters were called to a working structure fire with possible entrapment around 2:45 yesterday morning. When they got to the scene in Cass Township, heavy flames were coming from the home at 33 South Maple Avenue. Rescue crews were unable to get to 65-year-old Richard Dermo. His cause of death is still being investigated at this time. A next door neighbor was able to escape. The home at 35 South Maple Avenue sustained heavy smoke and water damage.

PALMERTON MAN DIES WEEKS AFTER CRASH
July 2, 2014

A Palmerton man has died from injuries he sustained in a car crash several weeks ago in North Whitehall Township. The Lehigh County Coroner says 76-year-old Joseph Ebeley was pronounced dead early this morning at Lehigh Valley Hospital. Ebeley was a passenger in a car that crashed on June 12th on Route 145. His death has been ruled an accident.

BEACH AT BELZTVILLE STATE PARK CLOSED
July 2, 2014

The beach at Beltzville State Park is closed again. State officials say tests from June 30th showed high bacteria counts in the water. The swim area was closed this morning. As a precaution, the beach will remain closed until acceptable water samples come back. Other activities at the park are continuing as normal including boating and fishing.

POLICE HUNT FOR STABBING SUSPECT
July 2, 2014

Stroud Area Regional Police are looking for 21-year-old Stroudsburg Resident Aaron Hernandez. They believe he stabbed an 18-year-old in the lower right abdomen, which caused a laceration to the victim's liver last night just before six outside Stroud Mall's Food Court. Captain Brian Kimmins says the incident between the two men started inside verbally over a female and escalated outside. The suspect is described as 5'8, 150 pounds with brown eyes and black hair.
Kimmins says mall security was first on the scene and were great. He wants people to be alert these things can happen anywhere at any time.
Hernandez is facing aggravated assault and other charges. Stroud Area Regional Police are asking you to contact them with any information on Hernandez's whereabouts.

ROSS TOWNSHIP PROPERTY EYESORE NO MORE
July 1, 2014

Neighbors on Flyte Road in Ross Township can't believe a property they called a dump is finally completely cleaned-up.
It was formerly owned by Rockne Newell who is currently in jail. Police say Newell opened fire at a Ross Township Supervisor meeting last August, killing three people and injuring others. The shooting occurred a few days after Newell's condemned property was bought at a sheriff sale by the township. Newell fought the township for several years over cleaning it up.
Ross Township officials estimate the clean up took about 10 days and surrounding neighbors are impressed. They say it's like Newell was never there. His two buildings and a culvert pipe bridge have also been demolished.
Township Supervisor Howard Beers Jr. says they voted to hire Papillion Contracting in Stroudsburg for the project and it cost the township $11,500. Beers says it's free of garbage and says the township will strive to keep it that way from now on. He says the property will simply remain open space in the future. And there will be consequences for anyone caught dumping there like any other property.

POLICE WARNING - DORNEY PARK FIREWORKS PARKING
July 1, 2014

If you're headed to the Lehigh Valley Friday night to watch Dorney Park's fireworks display, police warn you to watch where you park. State Police say motorists often park on the on and off ramps of Interstate 78. And in some cases spectators set up chairs outside of their vehicles. Trooper say this is not only illegal, it's unsafe. State Police will be patrolling the area Friday night to keep the area clear. State Police remind motorists it is unlawful to stand - or stop a vehicle on a limited access highway and motorists will be cited.

SUMMIT HILL GIRL FOUND
July 1, 2014

A missing Carbon County girl is found unharmed. A search was called this morning for a 10 year-old girl with special needs, from Summit Hill. Authorities tell us the girl is a foster child recently placed with a summit hill family. According to officials, the girl had an argument with her foster parents and took off just before eleven. Police were notified and a search began immediately. the young girl was found about three hours later unharmed. A couple who had seen the girl's picture on a Facebook alert spotted her leaning against a car in town.

BRCTV-13 News Archive



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