TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR JANUARY 21ST, 2020

One person was taken by a medical helicopter following an officer-involved shooting Monday morning in Slippery Rock Township in Lawrence County. The shooting happened around 9 a.m. on Copper Road, where State Police were called by a resident who reported a disturbance involving a woman. Police said 55 year old Maria Rozzi of New Castle was found with a gun and refused to cooperate with officers. The situation escalated and shots were fired, resulting in Rozzi being hit. Police said Rozzi was flown from the scene. The investigation is ongoing.

A 34-year-old man is recovering at a Pittsburgh hospital after a shooting in Aliquippa over the weekend.  The victim was shot in the leg on Ann Street early Sunday morning.  There’s no word on the search for the gunman and what may have led to the shooting.

State lawmakers are planning to take up a number of bills that focus on human trafficking this week.  Among the proposals is a bill that would aim to protect victims from having their past used against them in court.  Other bills would require incarcerated sex offenders to attend counseling and therapy, as well as increase penalties for trafficking.  January is National Human Trafficking Awareness Month in Pennsylvania.

No one is hurt after a Freeport fire early Sunday morning.  It broke out at a home on Washington Street, destroying the roof and most of the inside of the home.  The house was undergoing renovations and was unoccupied at the time.  It’s the second time since September that the house has caught fire.

Casinos across the state saw an increase in revenue in 2019 .The Pennsylvania Gaming Board said revenue went up 4.5 percent last year compared to 2018—which is about $146 million. The total amount of revenue casinos brought in was an estimated $3.3 billion. The board cited an increase in sports gambling as well as video gambling terminals for the increase. Locally, the Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh saw its customers place $392 million total in bets in 2019.

Absentee ballots in Beaver County will soon require the voter to supply the return postage.  In years past, the county has absorbed the cost of the return stamp, even though it isn’t required by law.  That can lead to a cost of about 20-grand in return postage alone during a presidential election year.  County officials say they were one of only a few counties statewide that provided the return envelope postage paid.

Friends and family say former Butler County Commissioner and local business owner Dale Pinkerton has died.  The owner of Pinkerton’s Tires on Main Street in Butler died Sunday following a battle with an illness.  Pinkerton served two terms as a county commissioner from 2008 to 2016.

Organizers say a gun buyback Monday in Pittsburgh was so successful, they ran out of money in less than an hour.  The program held on Doctor Martin Luther King, Junior day at Holy Cross Episcopal Church was offering 100-dollars per gun turned in, no questions asked.  Church officials say 40-minutes later, they had paid out over five-thousand-dollars.  They say they will hold a similar event soon to buy back even more guns.

Indiana University of Pennsylvania is launching a new effort to prevent opioid abuse.  University officials say nearly 100-thousand-dollars in state funding will allow them to boost efforts to educate the student body and offer counseling.  The Protect Your Brain campaign will put counselors in residence halls to help students whose loved ones are battling addiction.