THURSDAY JUNE 12 2014

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THURSDAY, JUNE 12, 2014

FLOODS & TORNADOES

FLOODED ROADS IN BLAIR AND BEDFORD COUNTIES LAST NIGHT. EMERGENCY CREWS IN BOATS RESCUED 2 PEOPLE FROM A TRAILER ALONG TAVERN LANE IN CLAYSBURG ABOUT 2AM AFTER BEAVERDAM CREEK OVERFLOWED. SEVERAL POSSIBLE TORNADOES LAST EVENING IN THE CENTERVILLE AND EVERETT AREAS OF BEDFORD COUNTY. SOME HOMES AND BUSINESSES WERE FLOODED BY HEAVY RAINFALL AND PENNDOT CREWS HAD TO DEAL WITH DOWNED TREES ON A NUMBER OF ROADS. LUCKILY, THE BEDFORD COUNTY E-M-A DIRECTOR SAYS THERE WERE NO SERIOUS INJURIES OR MAJOR DAMAGE. DURING THE STORM, A FIRE BROKE OUT IN A UTILITY ROOM AT AN APARTMENT BUILDING IN SAXTON ABOUT 7PM. THE FLAMES CAUSED EXTENSIVE DAMAGE TO ONE OF THE APARTMENTS AND THE OTHER UNITS HAD SMOKE AND WATER DAMAGE ALONG WITH A BUSINESS ON THE FIRST FLOOR. NO INJURIES WERE REPORTED.

SHOOTING & POLICE STAND OFF

JOHNSTOWN POLICE SAY 2 PEOPLE SUSPECTS ARE IN CUSTODY AFTER A SHOOTING AND A 7 HOUR STANDOFF. IT STARTED AROUND 2 WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON ON THOMAS STREET IN THE KERNVILLE SECTION OF THE CITY. ONE PERSON WAS REPORTEDLY SHOT IN THE ARM AND TAKEN TO MEMORIAL MEDICAL CENTER. 2 SUSPECTS FLED TO A HOME NEAR THE CORNER OF MESSENGER AND HORNER STREETS. ONE WAS TAKEN INTO CUSTODY QUICKLY, BUT ANOTHER MAN REFUSED TO COME OUT AND THE SPECIAL EMERGENCY RESPONSE TEAM SURROUNDED THE HOUSE DURING THE TORRENTIAL DOWNPOURS. THE SUSPECT SURRENDERED SHORTLY BEFORE 9PM. NO MOTIVE OR NAMES HAVE BEEN RELEASED.

CUSTODY BATTLE FOLLOWS WINDBER MURDER

A CUSTODY HEARING WAS SCHEDULED FOR 25 YEAR OLD DENVER BLOUGH OF WINDBER YESTERDAY, BUT IT WAS CONTINUED. HIS NEWBORN DAUGHTER IS FIGHTING FOR HER LIFE AFTER HER MOTHER WAS SHOT IN THE HEAD MAY 31ST. SHE DIED FOLLOWING AN EMERGENCY C-SECTION. BLOUGH CLAIMS HE SHOT CARESSA KOVALCIK BY ACCIDENT. A JUDGE WILLDECIDE IF KOVALCIK’S PARENT’S CAN TAKE CUSTODY OF THE BABY AND FORCE BLOUGH TO RELINQUISH HIS RIGHTS. THE COUPLE ALSO HAD AN 11 MONTH OLD SON.

PRISON SENTENCE STANDS

THE ALTOONA MIRROR REPORTS THAT BLAIR COUNTY JUDGE TIM SULLIVAN HAS RULED THAT THOMAS DRASS OF HOLLIDAYSBURG SHOULD NOT GET A SENTENCE REDUCTION. HE’S SERVING 20 TO 40 YEARS FOR 3RD DEGREE MURDER IN THE 2005 SHOOTING OF HIS GRANDFATHER, DWAYNE CHAMBERLAIN. DRASS CLAIMS HE SUFFERS FROM MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES AND HE WAS DELUSIONAL WHEN THE SHOOTING OCCURRED. THE JUDGE SAYS THERE WERE SEVERAL ISSUES TO CONSIDER, INCLUDING THE FACT THAT DRASS WAS NEARLY 4 YEARS LATE IN FILING HIS PETITION.

CHANGE OF VENUE FOR THREATS?

A BLAIR COUNTY JUDGE IS SCHEDULED TO HOLD A CHANGE OF VENUE HEARING TODAY FOR 24 YEAR OLD ADAM HARDIN OF CLAYSBURG. HE’S CHARGED WITH MAKING OCTOBER BOMB THREATS AGAINST THE BLAIR COUNTY COURTHOUSE…AND WATER CONTAMINATION THREATS AGAINST THE HOLLIDAYSBURG RESERVOIR WHILE AN INMATE AT THE COUNTY PRISON. THE DEFENSE CLAIMS THERE HAS BEEN EXTENSIVE PUBLICITY ABOUT HIS CASE. THE EMAILS LED TO AN EVACUATION AROUND THE COURTHOUSE AND RESIDENTS OF THE HOLLIDAYSBURG AREA WERE WARNED NOT TO CONSUME TAP WATER FOR A WEEKEND…WHICH FORCED SOME RESTAURANTS AND BUSINESSES TO CLOSE THEIR DOORS.

ARSON SUSPECT IN COURT 24 YEAR OLD TIMOTHY PENROD OF STATE COLLEGE WAIVED ANOTHER PRELIMINARY HEARING YESTERDAY ON CHARGES OF SETTING FIRES AT A SHED OUTSIDE ONE ORCHARD PARK HOME AND IGNITING PORCH FURNITURE AT ANOTHER HOUSE. THE MAY BLAZES CAUSED THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS IN DAMAGE. LAST WEEK, PENROD WAIVED HIS PRELIMINARY HEARING ON CHARGES OF VANDALIZING PINE HALL CEMETERY LATER IN MAY. 15 HEADSTONES WERE KNOCKED OVER AND FLAGS PLACED ON VETERANS’ GRAVES FOR MEMORIAL DAY WERE SET ON FIRE. PENROD IS IN THE CENTRE COUNTY PRISON.

CITY MANAGER RESIGNS

JOHNSTOWN CITY MANAGER KRISTEN DENNE ANNOUNCED AT LAST NIGHT’S COUNCIL MEETING THAT SHE IS RESIGNING, BUT NO ONE COMMENTED ON WHY. CITY OFFICIALS ALSO VOTED TO TEMPORARILY SUSPEND SEWER LINE PRESSURE TESTING WHICH SOME RESIDENTS AND BUSINESS OWNERS SAY IS EXPENSIVE AND UNNECESSARY. FEDERALLY MANDATED SEWER LINE UPGRADES ARE CURRENTLY UNDERWAY THROUGHOUT JOHNSTOWN AND WILL CONITNUE FOR THE NEXT FEW YEARS.

GUINNESS WORLD RECORD?

PENN STATE SENIOR ROSS HOLLAND SHOULD HAVE A NEW WORLD RECORD ON HIS HANDS. AT THE HUB, HE POPPED A WHEELIE IN HIS WHEELCHAIR FOR 50 HOURS, STARTING ON MONDAY AND FINISHING YESTERDAY AFTERNOON. HOLLAND IS A DOUBLE AMPUTEE FOLLOWING A LAWN MOWER ACCIDENT WHEN HE WAS 3 YEARS OLD. THE PREVIOUS RECORD WAS JUST 10 HOURS AND A VIDEO OF HOLLAND’S WHEELIE WILL BE SENT TO THE GUINNESS BOOK OF WORLD RECORDS FOR VERIFICATION. HOLLAND WAS SHOOTING FOR 72 HOURS STRAIGHT, BUT IT WAS JUST TOO MUCH.

UNITED WAY DAY OF CARING

VOLUNTEERS ARE NEEDED FOR THE UNITED WAY OF BLAIR COUNTY’S 21ST ANNUAL “DAY OF CARING” WHICH IS SET FOR NEXT WEDNESDAY. NON-PROFIT GROUPS AND HUMAN SERVICE AGENCIES HAVE REQUESTED HELP WITH MULTIPLE PROJECTS WHICH WILL REQUIRE 300 VOLUNTEERS TO COMPLETE. PROJECTS INCLUDE LANDSCAPING AND GARDENING, INDOOR AND OUTDOOR PAINTING, CLEANING, AND MORE. TO SIGN UP, CALL 944-0884, EXTENSION 302…OR VISIT unitedwayofblaircounty.org.