Tri County Report For October 16th, 2019

State troopers say an Ellwood City man is dead after falling into a pit at a small sewer plant in Franklin Township yesterday.  The 61 year old man fell at the plant on Park Road in Moraine State Park.  The man’s identity hasn’t been released.

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf is telling President Donald Trump he won’t be using state authority granted last month to refuse to accept refugees. Wolf on Tuesday wrote the President and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to say his state will continue to welcome those facing persecution and danger, including people that other states won’t accept. The president’s order requires state and local officials to provide public written consent to receive refugees.

Court documents are showing that federal prosecutors rejected a plea offer from the man accused of shooting and killing eleven people at the Tree of Life synagogue in exchange for life in prison.  Those documents filed yesterday rejected Robert Bowers’ effort to avoid a potential death penalty sentence should he be convicted for the Squirrel Hill shooting that injured six others last October.  It’s proposed Bowers’ trial will begin in September 2020 as he faces 63 federal charges.

Investigators are searching for the man they believe held up a restaurant in Rochester Township this week.  The suspect was caught on surveillance video demanding money from a cashier at the Asian Kitchen on Brighton Avenue.  The cashier refused and chased after the suspect after he ran out.  Anyone with information on the attempt is asked to contact police.

A woman with ties to Beaver County may soon be ready to stand trial for murder in Florida.  Physicians determined in May that Kimberly Kessler wasn’t competent to stand trial for the 2018 murder of a co-worker at a Florida salon.  She was committed to a Florida hospital in July with the intention that she have another competency hearing within 30 days.  The staff at that hospital sent a letter to the judge saying they felt Kessler was now ready to face the charges for the death of Joleen Cummings, whose body hasn’t been found.

A search is underway for the suspect in a child-luring attempt in Aliquippa.  Police say a black man with an accent tried to entice a child into his car yesterday.  The suspect was reportedly driving a new, black Honda sedan with New Jersey license plate G89-KLK.  Anyone with information is urged to call Aliquppa police immediately.

No damage or injuries are being reported after an earthquake rattled parts of Washington County.  The U.S. Geological Survey says a two-point-two-magnitude quake shook Washington and surrounding areas early yesterday.  Not many people reported feeling the tremor based on the time it happened.

Investigators say they found more than 200-grand in marijuana during a drug raid in Aliquippa this week.  They’re looking for Ralph Smith and Robert Platt connected to the haul found at what they’re calling a stash house on Green Street.  Arrest warrants were filed for the two men Tuesday.

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky will learn next month what his new prison sentence will be for a 45-count child sexual abuse conviction. An order was filed Tuesday in Centre County that set Sandusky’s resentencing for Nov. 8th. Sandusky was convicted and sentenced in 2012 to 30 to 60 years, but the state Superior Court ruled in February that mandatory minimums had been improperly applied.