TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR AUGUST 12TH, 2022

A Beaver Falls man was arrested by State Police following a pursuit that ended in Ohio. Police said 41 year old Oscar Guant was wanted by police in Chippewa Township, when police spotted Guant’s vehicle on State Street in Union Township. Guant refused to follow police commands and fled the scene, striking a patrol car. The chase ended when Guant crashed his vehicle in Ohio. Guant faces a number of charges as the investigation is ongoing.

Police in Mercer County have charged a Farrell man in connection with a shooting from June of this year. The Sharon Herald is reporting 38 year old Robert Russell is charged with with aggravated assault, discharging a firearm into an occupied structure, reckless endangerment and endangering the welfare of children. A warrant for his arrest has been issued.  Russell allegedly shot at an SUV that was being driven by his 16 year old son. No injuries were reported.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf is encouraging parents to get their kids vaccinated before school starts. State law requires students to be up-to-date on vaccines for their age group. Children can now only attend school for five days if they don’t have their shots. If a child doesn’t have at least one dose of required vaccines, they risk not being able to attend. The COVID-19 vaccine isn’t one of the vaccines required by state law. 

A traveler who tried to get through security yesterday at Pittsburgh International Airport with blasting caps in his carry-on is facing charges today.  The traveler from Texas says the items were in his bag because he uses them for work.  Police have charged Jose Valenzuela with multiple offenses.

The state director of Pennsylvania Planned Parenthood PAC says the state is seeing an increase in the number of women traveling here for abortion procedures. However, Lindsey Mauldin says she’s worried that the state being able to provide abortions could change in a few months. That’s because of potential policy changes that could come after the upcoming elections. Seats are up for grabs for a new governor and many of the House seats as well as half of the Senate districts.

The Department of State is working with officials at all levels in advance of Election Day in Pennsylvania.  Deputy Secretary for Elections Jonathan Marks says his agency and the individual counties and municipalities are prepared for Election Day. His best advice for those planning to vote is to prepare and have a plan in place. Registration, applying for a mail-in or absentee ballot, and to find polling places can be found at vote dot pa dot gov

Western Pennsylvania residents and USPS consumers across the nation can expect to pay more to ship packages during the upcoming holiday season.  The postal service says customers will see a peak season rate hike this year.  Officials say the increase will be based on the weight of the package and the distance it will be traveling.  The price hike, they add, is designed to keep USPS competitive with other carriers while providing the agency with the revenue to cover extra costs in anticipation of peak-season volume.  The increase will go into effect October 2nd and expire January 22nd. 

Some 20 state House republican lawmakers are calling for the resignation of acting Pennsylvania Education Secretary Eric Hagarty. They say he should step down unless he reverses  what they call the “Gender Theory Student Indoctrination” in public schools. The lawmakers say they want all parts of the department’s Gender Identity web page removed and have labeled their call ‘The Reform or Resign Ultimatum.’

PennDOT is announcing a new self-driving vehicle testing facility being built in Westmoreland County.  State officials say the 20-million-dollar development will serve as a site for autonomous car developers to replicate high speed, high traffic areas.  Called PennStart, the facility will be constructed on state-owned property at the Regional Industrial Development Corp. in East Huntingdon.  Officials expect the track to be in operation in late 2024 or early 2025.