TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR MAY 11TH, 2022

State Police in Lawrence County are investigating a homicide that happened in Neshannock Township Tuesday morning. Police were called to a home along Mercer Road around 10:30 a.m. The victim in the case has been identified as 65-year-old Cecelia J. Liposky. Police are looking for the woman’s gray 2014 Nissan Sentra bearing Pennsylvania Registration: JTC5995. Anyone with information is asked to contact State Police.

Legislators have about half of their three-week recess remaining and many are using the time to defend their jobs as lawmakers. Campaigning in their home districts is in full swing as they won’t meet again until May 23rd. Key issues they face upon their return include reaching a budget deal with Governor Tom Wolf and how to use the remaining nearly two and a half billion dollars in federal American Rescue Plan money.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro and State Representative Austin Davis are pushing for a “united” Democratic ticket.  While campaigning, the two also reiterated support for maintaining current Pennsylvania abortion law after the recent United States Supreme Court leak.  

Prosecutors in the case against accused Tree of Life shooter Robert Bowers want the defendant on record.  A motion filed by federal attorneys this week asks the judge presiding over the case to order Bowers to appear in court and to have him confirm that he is aware of his attorney’s actions.  Specifically, those prosecutors want Bowers to confirm that he knows his lawyers have been waiving his rights in a number of instances.  The government is making the motion in order to lessen the chance that Bowers will be successful in any appeal attempt.  Bowers is accused of killing eleven people in an attack on the Tree of Life synagogue in October of 2018.

State health officials say they are looking into reported hepatitis infections in young children.  Doctors at UPMC Children’s Hospital say they are investigating some possible cases of the mysterious illness, but none have yet been confirmed.  Possible cases in the area date back to October, but officials say no patients are currently being treated at UPMC.

Do skyrocketing gas prices have you thinking about buying an electric vehicle?  The Department of Environmental Protection says fueling an electric vehicle costs the equivalent in electricity of about a dollar and 25 cents per gallon of gas. With fewer moving parts an EV also costs less to maintain. 2.5 percent of new vehicles sold in PA in 2021 were electric which was double the number sold the year before

Pennsylvania Democrat Senator Bob Casey says he supports the proposed Women’s Health Protection Act.  If passed, the legislation would place abortion rights for women into law on a federal level.  Casey describes himself as a “pro-life” Democrat, but says the potential ruling in the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade has changed his stance on the bill.  Currently, all Republican senators oppose the act, and they are joined by West Virginia Democrat, Joe Manchin.

No injuries were reported following a one vehicle accident in Wayne Township. State Police report 31 year old Lindsay Marie Warner was traveling south on River Road when she traveled off the roadway, first struck a utility pole, then went over an embankment. Warner was not hurt.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro says his office has filed a suit against the U.S. Postal Service about its new vehicle program.  The suit revolves around the Postal Service’s plans to replace 90 percent of its fleet with vehicles that use fossil fuels. Shapiro and other states’ attorneys general say the new policy fails to comply with the basic requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act. Shapiro says the Postal Service signed a contract and put a down payment for new vehicles before any environmental review could be complete.

Lordstown Motors says it’s right where it needs to be to start commercial production of its all-electric Endurance pickup truck later this year.  The company is working with Foxconn, which will take over the former General Motors Lordstown complex.  Lordstown Motors doesn’t have a deal with technology manufacturer Foxconn yet, but executives say they’re still negotiating.  The deadline to complete the deal has been pushed back to Wednesday, May 18th.