TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR MAY 14TH, 2021

Two people were taken to the hospital following a head-on crash yesterday morning in New Beaver Boro. State Police report 55 year old Kimberly Hovanec of New Castle was southbound on route 168 when she collided with a vehicle operated by 18 year old Talia Magno of New Gallilee. Both drivers were taken to St.Elizabeth’s Hopsital in Youngsotwn. Police say the crash remains under investigation.

A New Castle man is being held in the Lawrence County Jail without bond following his arraignment on criminal homicide charges yesterday. The incident happened Wednesday night along the one-thousand-block of Dewey Avenue.  Police say 59-year-old Louis Esposito confessed to killing his mother 81 year old Margert Kahrer and his landlord 78 year old John Micco. Both were stabbed .He’s also accused of a shooting a neighbor, Kevin Ross.  Esposito is being charged with two counts of homicide, one count of attempted homicide.  And a charge of escape after police say he tried to pull a fire alarm in the interview room while he was being investigated.

COVID-19 cases are continuing to rise throughout the state. Health officials say yesterday, the state total saw an increase of more than two-thousand new cases, pushing it over one-million-181-thousand. About 38 new deaths related to the virus were added to the death toll, which is at 26-thousand-697. Lawrence County has 7,412 Covid-19 cases and 207 deaths. Mercer has recorded 9,381 cases and 255 fatalities.

Two measures that will seek to limit the governor’s emergency powers are on the ballot for next Tuesday’s Primary Election. One would take away some of the power for the governor to declare emergencies and give it to the state legislature, while the other will limit any emergency declaration to 21-days unless the legislature extends it.  PEMA director Randy Padfield spoke against the measures yesterday, saying that emergency decisions have to be agile and quick. They added that taking away this power from the governor could have real, even tragic, consequences.

A Washington County man this week was sentenced to 97 months in prison following a conviction for possessing child porn.  Prosecutors had said that Jon DeTemple had thousands of images of child porn that he had acquired via an internet file sharing network.  After his prison sentence, DeTemple will have 10 years of supervised release.  He was also ordered to make financial restitution to all identified victims in the case.

Pennsylvania is modifying its mask order in accordance to the CDC’s newest guidance for fully vaccinated individuals. The Department of Health says fully vaccinated individuals don’t have to wear masks indoors or outdoors, except when in crowded transportation or sensitive environments like hospitals. Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated people still have to wear a mask until either they’re fully vaccinated or 70-percent of adults in the state are fully vaccinated.

A Pittsburgh man was arrested by New Castle City Police in connection with two armed robberies in New Castle Wednesday. According to the New Castle News, police have charged 35 year old Dorian Edward Brockman in holdups at the Pennsylvania Skills Games center on Wilmington Avenue and the Speedway station on N. Jefferson St. Brockman faces a number of charges. He was arraigned and placed in the Lawrence County Jail on 200 thousand dollars bond.

The Mars Area School District and its teachers union have finalized a new contract.  The six-year agreement retroactively begins this school year, and includes salary increases and improved health insurance benefits.  The district will also create an advisory committee to make recommendations on how to improve remote learning for students, and live-streaming instruction.

No stranger to post-season hockey, the Pittsburgh Penguins front office said yesterday that they will break with tradition for Round One of this year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs.  The organization says they will not be putting up a big screen outside of PPG Paints Arena to show fans the action going on inside.  A spokesperson for the club says the decision was made with the pandemic in mind and a desire not to create an overcrowding situation outside of the arena.