TRI COUNTY REPORT FOR NOVEMBER 16TH, 2022

A New Castle man has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh Monday on a charge of violating federal narcotics laws after receiving more than 500 grams of cocaine delivered by the US post office.  34 year old Brandon McConnell was arrested yesterday. The sealed indictment was returned on November 1st .  According to the indictment, around May 14, 2021, McConnell was the intended recipient of a US Postal Service package that contained cocaine.  The charge carries a sentence of five years to 40 years in prison, a fine not to exceed $5 million or both.

State Police in Lawrence County are investigating a case of invasion of privacy at Mohawk Junior/Senior High School. The investigation was initiated by three female students who made allegations against a Mohawk School district staff member. KDKA-TV is reporting the three female students claim a male teacher took inappropriate pictures in the classroom of their upper body without their consent.  The investigation is ongoing.  

Shell Polymers Monaca has begun operations this week at its new plant in Beaver County.  Shell Polymers, part of Shell Chemical, will break down ethane molecules at the facility to create materials that can be used for the creation of plastic products like food packaging and certain auto parts.  Shell estimates that 600 jobs will be created at the plant.

The state of Pennsylvania reportedly will get close to 20-million dollars in a privacy settlement from Google.  The agreement, announced Monday, marks the end of an investigation into the internet search engine’s location tracking services, which found that Google misled consumers over a four-year period.  Josh Shapiro, Pennsylvania’s attorney general and governor-elect, says Pennsylvania will be paid 19-point-seven-million dollars in what he calls one of the largest multistate privacy settlements in U.S. history.

A man who recorded a child in a Monroeville school restroom is serving five years of probation.  Twenty-six-year-old Brian Mintmier pleaded guilty to charges related to the March incident yesterday.  A judge has also ordered him to undergo treatment at a residential mental health facility.  The sentence prohibits Mintmier from going near any school, although, he is not required to register as a sex offender.

Fire officials in Buffalo Township say a home is severely damaged following a Tuesday morning blaze.  Multiple crews responded to the property on Fleming Road around 8:15 a.m.  Firefighters found heavy smoke and flames at the residence and called in tankers to provide additional water.  Crews on the scene say they believe the blaze may have started in a chimney or wood burning stove.  The State Police Fire Marshal is investigating.

Three pieces of legislation are now in state house committees that would protect dogs and cats that are sold or used for medical experiments. Modeled after the successful “Beagle Bills” that were passed in Virginia this year, the measures would restrict the import and sale of animals from kennels and dealers who have serious or multiple citations under the federal Animal Welfare Act. They would also enhance animal adoption if the animals can be adopted as well as close loopholes in Pennsylvania’s animal cruelty law.

Motorists are advised to plan ahead for a temporary closure along Mercer Road in Beaver County. According to PennDOT, a portion of Mercer Road in Franklin Township will be closed continuously until Novembe 25th , as road crews conduct repair work under the railroad bridge located between Burke Street and Harmony Fisher Avenue. The Ellwood City Ledger reports, Motorists will be detoured along routes 65 and 288.