TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR SEPTEMBER 9TH, 2021

A Wampum man was sentenced Tuesday in Lawrence County Common Pleas Court to 18-36 years in prison, for impregnating an underage teen four years ago and then helping kill their infant. According to the Ellwood City Ledger, 41 year old Christopher Lee Kennedy had pleaded guilty in June to charges of conspiracy to commit third-degree murder and involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child less than 16 years old. Kennedy will also undergo a sexual offender evaluation and will be a lifelong registrant on the Megan’s Law list. Once on parole, he is ordered to have no contact, direct or indirect, with the victim in the case.

A Beaver County man caught on video taking part in January’s insurrection in the nation’s capitol is now admitting guilt.  Prosecutors say that Russell Peterson LIVE streamed on Facebook during the violent action and that his mother had posted on the site that he had sat in Nancy Pelosi’s chair.  On Wednesday, Peterson pleaded guilty to charges in the case.  He could get as many as six months in jail at sentencing later this year.

As the 20th anniversary of the September 11th attacks approaches, the group Friends of Flight 93 is preparing to present their first Hero Award.  The new honor will be presented for the first time tomorrow morning.  The group says it will go to someone who has demonstrated bravery and courage in the vein of the 37 passengers and 3 crew members who died when the hijacked Flight 93 aircraft went down in Shanksville.

Officials at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center say they are seeing a growing number of COVID-19 patients in their 20s and 30s.  UPMC Doctor Rachel Sackrowitz said yesterday that the Delta variant of COVID-19 is spreading among a demographic once thought to be less vulnerable to the virus.  Hospital officials say the average age of their current COVID-19 patients is ten-years younger than during last winter.  Dr. Sackrowitz added that treating patients is becoming increasingly harder because of a shortage of nurses.  

The parents of an Ambridge High School student suspended for bringing pepper spray to school say their child was wrongfully punished.  At a school board meeting last night, the parents of 15-year-old Madison Mihalic argued that the district’s policy and the school’s handbook differ on what classifies as a propellent weapon.  Mihalic walks to school and began carrying pepper spray for protection but was suspended for ten-days when officials discovered it on her keychain.  Mihalic’s parents say the District bans chemical agents, but her pepper spray’s ingredient is red pepper and is not listed by the CDC as a chemical agent.   

TSA agents at Pittsburgh International Airport are reporting the discovery of a loaded firearm for the second straight day.  Agents detected a 40-caliber weapon with six bullets Wednesday morning inside the carry-on of a Beaver County resident.  The weapon was confiscated, and the traveler was cited and issued a summons to appear in court.  Pittsburgh International agents have now stopped a traveler from getting through security with a gun 20-times this year.

A Pennsylvania Senate subcommittee is asking the public to tell them about any problems they may have encountered while voting. This is part of the committee’s investigation on election integrity. Those who submit their sworn testimony must be comfortable signing an affidavit and testifying under oath. Members of the Intergovernmental Operations Committee say the public’s testimony will be used to improve state law and tighten election security.

Now that students across the commonwealth are back in the classroom, the Wolf Administration wants to make sure they stay there for the entire school year. Governor Tom Wolf says the state is offering four key resources to keep kids in the classroom. (CUT 3) The governor says its been proven many students learn better in the classroom and that being in school is just as important to the social, emotional and physical well-being of children.

COVID-19 cases are continuing to rise throughout the state. Yesterday, the state added nearly 44-hundred new cases to the state total, pushing it over one-million-329-thousand. About 38 new deaths related to the virus were added to the death toll, which is at 28-thousand-446. Lawrence County has 8,739 cases and 231 deaths. Mercer county has recorded 10,759 Covid-19 cases and 275 fatalities.