Tri County Report For July 19th, 2019

Western Pennsylvania will be dealing with dangerously hot weather today.  The National Weather Service says temps could reach the mid 90’s with heat index values as high as 105 degrees.  A heat advisory goes into effect at noon and runs until tomorrow night throughout the western portion of the state.  The hot and humid conditions could quickly cause heat stress or heat stroke if precautions aren’t taken.

With high temperatures and humidity expected around the area over the next several days, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission is asking residents to conserve energy and prepare for a power outage. Energy conservation and cooling ideas from the PUC include turning off non-essential appliances and as many lights as possible; postponing using appliances that produce heat until after 7 p.m.; and spending as much time as possible in rooms that do not receive direct sunlight.

A man is facing charges after striking a home with his pickup truck yesterday in New Brighton.  Jason Sheets was allegedly drunk when he drove through a fence and onto the rear patio of a home on 16th Street.  The 31-year-old was found later walking on the 17-hundred block of Penn Avenue and reportedly acted belligerent while being taken into custody.  Sheets’ preliminary hearing is set for August 9th.

The Y-M-C-A of Greater Pittsburgh is canceling three of its summer camps following the death of a teen.  The organization says it is going to continue its review of safety protocols and procedures following the death of 15-year-old Nathan Kanczes, who was attending Teen Wilderness Camp at Camp Kon-O-Kwee Spencer in Beaver County.  The teen was on an outing in Somerset County when he fell sustaining critical injuries.

A Beaver Falls man was sentenced yesterday in U.S.District Court in Pittsburgh for robbing a bank in New Brighton last year. 50 year old Ernest Dwayne Taylor faces 65 months in prison and three years of supervised release on charges of bank robbery. According to authorities Taylor entered the Huntington Bank located on 3rd Avenue and passed a teller a note indicating that he was armed and demanding cash. As a result of the robbery, Taylor got away with six-hundred dollars in cash. No one was hurt.

Revenue from regulated gambling in Pennsylvania climbed to a new record high above $3.3 billion in the just-completed fiscal year. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board said Thursday that revenue rose by nearly $60 million, or almost 2%, over the 2018 fiscal year. Slot machine play at the state’s 12 casinos grew by $26 million and newly legal sports betting and fantasy sports contests contributed another $43 million. Table games play shrank by $10 million. Pennsylvania is No. 1 in tax revenue from casino gambling, netting $1.5 billion last year.

Ellwood City police have charged a Big Beaver man they say led them on a high-speed chase back in May. According to the Ellwood City Ledger 20-year-old Kyle Christopher Hartle faces charges of fleeing police, reckless driving and various traffic violation. Police attempted to pull Hartle over for a traffic offense May 22 while it was traveling on Second Avenue, but instead the vehicle took off, passing vehicles improperly and not stopping for traffic signals as it continued onto Route 288 in North Sewickley Township. Police ended the pursuit and the investigation led to Hartle being identified as the driver.

Investigators say they have a person of interest in the shooting death of Officer Calvin Hall.  The to-be-identified man is being held on unrelated charges as they work to learn more about the Sunday morning shooting on Monticello Street in Homewood.  Hall was off-duty and was reportedly breaking up a fight when he was shot three times in the back.  The 36-year-old died Wednesday.