Tri-County Report For August 1st, 2018

Ten years in prison await a New Castle man who robbed convenience stores and banks.  Federal prosecutors say Eric Barbati was sentenced yesterday for the knifepoint holdups committed last year.  Barbati was also ordered to repay more than five-thousand-dollars stolen from the businesses.

A Hermitage teen was not hurt following a one vehicle accident on Interstate 376 in Union Township. According to State Police, a 17 year old boy was westbound on 376 when he lost control of his vehicle, traveled into a ditch and rolled over. Police said the teen was not hurt but was cited. Police did not release his name.

According to this week’s Triple-A gas price report, Gas prices in Western Pennsylvania are down fractions of a penny this week to $3.08 per gallon.  Statewide, Pennsylvania gas prices are one cent higher week-over-week at $3.04/gallon.  In New Castle prices are averaging 3.05 a gallon while drivers in the Sharon area are paying $3 a gallon.  As U.S. gasoline demand strengthened and supply declined, the national gas price average increased by two-cents on the week to land at $2.86.

Crews in Mercer County worked to rescue 30 cows from what was a three-alarm barn fire Tuesday evening. According to WFMJ-TV, The fire started around 5:15 p.m. on the 500 block of Carpenter Road in Stoneboro. Officials say there were 30 cows in the barn and nine died in the fire. One man did suffer from smoke inhalation after he went into the barn to help save the animals. The investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing.

Work is underway to restore and remodel the historic Penn-Beaver Hotel.  When completed, the hotel in Rochester is expected to house the Rochester Smokehouse restaurant as well as a billiard room and at least 52 rooms to rent.  The owners say they hope to reopen by year’s end.

Washington School District is splitting a federal grant with two Beaver County school districts to bring more fresh fruits and vegetables to students.  Officials said Tuesday Washington, Aliquippa, and Ambridge Area school districts will split the more than 103-thousand-dollar federal grant designed to help offer healthier school meal options to improve their present and future health.  The program targets districts that have a free and reduced meal eligibility of 50-percent.

A retired priest who served in the Diocese of Greensburg is awaiting sentencing for sexually abusing a child.  John Sweeney pleaded guilty yesterday to indecent assault.  Sweeney assaulted a boy at St. Margaret Mary Church in the early 1990s.  The Pennsylvania attorney general’s office says it was the first guilty plea from a grand jury probe into sex abuse in six Catholic dioceses.

The owners of Station Square are set to unveil a 30-million-dollar revitalization project for the landmark.  Officials for Forest City Realty Trust say the makeover includes a new space for UPMC, as well as the addition of several restaurants.  At the same time, developers want to get rid of the mezzanine level of the Freight House Shops.  The plan will be introduced at an informal meeting later this week.

Someone who bought a Powerball ticket in Pittsburgh ahead of this past Saturday’s drawing has a million dollars coming their way.  Officials say one winning million-dollar-ticket was sold at the Stop-And-Shop on Ardmore Boulevard.  The store gets five-grand for selling a winning ticket.  The winner has a year to come forward to claim the prize.