TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR FEBRUARY 6TH, 2020

An investigation is underway into a deadly school van crash in Lawrence County.  State police say the Mercer Area School District van crashed with a tractor-trailer yesterday morning on Portersville Road in Perry Township.  The van’s driver 64 year old Peter Ellis was killed.  No students were on board. The driver of the tractor-trailor, 30 year old Jaren Urey also of Mercer was not hurt.

Pennsylvania’s U-S senators are holding their party lines in the acquittal of President Donald Trump.  Democratic Senator Bob Casey voted Wednesday to convict on the counts of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, while Republican Pat Toomey voted to acquit.  Each had been open earlier in the week as to how they were going to vote.  Toomey specifically wrote that while Trump’s actions were not perfect, the American people should decide for themselves if he should stay in office this November.

Investigators believe an Ambridge man was extremely drunk when he assaulted his ex this week.  Robert Barber is accused of trying to get inside the victim’s Merchant Street apartment early February 3rd, and she let him in with the hopes he would go to sleep.  Police say 45-year-old man tried to have sex with the victim and when she refused, Barber allegedly struck the woman across the face and shoved her into an air conditioner.  Barber then followed the woman to the parking lot and jumped onto the hood of her car, refusing to let her leave.  Barber is in Beaver County Jail on ten-thousand-dollars bail.

The trial of a man charged in the August 2018 shooting death of 21 Tyrone T. Cornish Jr. in an apartment parking lot in Mercer County is expected to start Tuesday. The Sharon Herald is reporting 19 year old Jaylaun Coleman of Farrell is being charged with first degree murder along with a number of other charges. The shooting took place in the Willow Village apartments parking lot in Sharon. Jury selection begins Monday.

An Evans City man has pleaded guilty in Federal Court on bank robbery charges. 33 year old Chad Vaughn is accused of robbing the NexTier Bank on South Main Street in Zelienople back in October of 2018. Authorites said Vaughn got away with over two thousand dollars in cash.  Sentencing is set for July 7th.  Vaughn faces up to 20 years in prison along with a 250 thousand dollars fine, or both.

People who depend on the horse racing industry in western Pennsylvania oppose Governor Tom Wolf’s plan to fund college scholarships.  The governor wants to funnel millions of dollars from the Race Horse Development Trust Fund into scholarships for state universities.  People who work and race at The Meadows say that will cut deeply into purses that they need to survive.

State police are identifying the man injured in a Prospect wreck this week.  Troopers say 23-year-old Cody Purvis of Portersville was taken to U-P-M-C Presbyterian in an unknown condition after rolling his vehicle Monday afternoon on Park Drive.  It’s believed Purvis’s vehicle left the road for an unknown reason, hit a ditch, and overturned.

Vice President Mike Pence is rallying up support for President Donald Trump’s reelection effort in the Midstate.  Pence, along with Kellyanne Conway and Betsy DeVos, spoke at a Women for Trump event at the Radisson in East Pennsboro Township yesterday evening.  Pence told the crowd that women are winning under Trump’s leadership.

Mars Bank now has a branch in Grove City.  The bank opened last week with a ribbon cutting at the Blair and South Broad streets location.  The branch’s new home is inside a recently renovated building.