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Items filtered by date: Monday, 17 April 2017

"He could be nearby. He could be far away or anywhere in between."

"He could be nearby.  He could be far away  or anywhere in between."  The assessment of  FBI agent Stephen Anthony on the second day of the manhunt for Steve Stephens.  Stephens is the 37 year old Cleveland job counselor whom authorities in several states are on  the lookout for.  On Sunday, Stephens, according to Cleveland city police shot a city resident, a 74 year old retire collecting aluminum cans.  Stephens is alleged to have posted video of the apparent random killing on Facebook

According to a news release from the Pennsylvania State Police at the Erie Station, Stephens remains the suspect in that broadcasted murder that occurred in Cleveland Sunday.  The troopers say Stephens is last known to be driving a 2016 white Ford Fusion that may be bearing temporary tags.  Stephens in known to be armed and dangerous. His current location and or direction of travel are unknown, but was last known to be in Cleveland.  He is believed to be responsible for at least one murder, but claimed responsibility for multiple more that are unconfirmed.  There is no confirmed information that Stephens is in northwest Pennsylvania.  As information comes available updates will be issued. 

News sources report Law enforcement officials said that the last place his cell phone signal was tracked was in Erie, Pennsylvania, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) east of Cleveland, on Sunday afternoon. Alerts initially were set for Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana, and Michigan.  The alert for Stephens is now nationwide. 

 

Police said Stephens killed Robert Godwin Sr., a 74-year-old former foundry worker, and nine schools were locked down Monday in Philadelphia, a more than six-hour drive from Cleveland, as police investigated possible sightings of Stephens who is wanted on aggravated murder. 

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2 Car Cussewago Crash, 4 Kids Hurt

Four children are reported hurt, the result of a two vehicle crash Sunday night in Cussewago Township, Crawford County.  The Meadville State Police report a Ford Edge driven by 38 year old Ashley Sutton of Conneaut, Ohio was west bound on North Mosiertown approaching the intersection of State Route 98 at shortly after 6:45 p.m..  Police say the second vehicle (not identified by police) and driven by 32 year old Robert Mook of Cochranton, was traveling south on Highway 98 approaching the intersection with North Mosiertown Road.  Sutton's vehicle went into the intersection without stopping at the posted stop sign crashing into Mook's vehicle in the back passenger side door head on.  Sutton's Ford Edge came to a stop near the point of impact.  After the crash Mook's vehicle spun to the right, went a short distance and came to a stop.  Two children from Sutton's vehicle were transported to Meadville Medical Center for treatment of injuries of unknown severity.  Two children from Mook's vehicle were transported to UPMC Hamot Hospital in Erie for treatment of minor injuries. 

 

Assisting at the scene were volunteers from Edinboro and Cranesville Fire Departments and Meadville Ambulance Service and Leonard's Towing.  

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Driver Thrown from Vehicle in Randolph Twp. Suspected DUI Crash

The investigation into a suspected Crawford County DUI motor vehicle crash Friday night  in which a driver known to the Meadville State Police, but not identified to the public, was thrown from the vehicle, is continuing.  The troopers say that at shortly after 9:30 pm, in Randolph Township, at 31976 State Route 27 they responded to the report of a pickup truck that had careened through the oncoming lane of travel for unknown reasons and went off the southern side of the roadway.  It is reported the truck came to a stop on the eastern side of the roadway, but not before it crashed into a ditch, flipped over and ejected the operator from inside. 

The driver is reported to have been Life Flighted to UPMC Hamot Hospital in Erie.  The pickup truck was towed from the scene by Leonard's towing.  The troopers report they observed several indicators of driving under the influence. 

 

The Meadville State Police were assisted at the scene   by the Townville Volunteer Fire Department, the Randolph Township Volunteer Fire Department and the Randolph Township Volunteer Ambulance Service as well as the Townville Volunteer Ambulance and service and Meadville Ambulance Services.

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Hartstown Man Takes Meds, Crashes Car

The Meadville troopers report on Sunday night shortly before 9:15 pm at 6931 Coulter Street in West Fallowfield Township, 28 year old Frederick Klahr Lenk of Hartstown engaged in a verbal argument with his girl friend.  He took a large quantity of prescribed medication which did not belong to him.  After a period of arguing with several people he pulled out a steak knife and  brandished it toward the other residences of the trailer. 

Police say at that time Lenk then got into his vehicle and crashed into a utility pole.  Lenk was transported to Meadville Medical Center via Conneaut lake Ambulance.

 

The investigation continues.  

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R A Rent-a-Space Burglary, Theft Probed

The alleged Rome Township burglary of 78 year old woman's storage space near Centerville late last week remains under investigation by the Corry State Police.  The troopers say some time between last Thursday night and last Friday morning, they were called to investigate a series of burglaries at the R A Pearson Rent-A-Space at 17633 State Route 8.  Police say a total of 16 storage units were broken into with various items taken from multiple units.  Anyone with information is asked to contact PSP Corry at 814-663-2042.  

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Police Probe Atlantic Theft of Coins, Gun

The alleged theft of collectible coins and a handgun is the subject of an active investigation by the Meadville State Police.  The state police report probing an alleged  theft at the residence of 74 year old Ronald Feldmiller at 3477 Lake Road in Greenwood Township, near Atlantic.  Police say sometime between 5:45 and 6:45 am Monday, an unknown person took 65 gold president quarters , twenty rolls of state  quarters and an H & R .22 black handgun with a twelve inch barrel.  Anyone with information is asked to call the Meadville State Police at 814-332-6911.

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OC Driver Held for DUI, Fleeing, Eluding

A driver in Oil City is charged with Fleeing and Eluding, Driving Under the Influence, Careless Driving and Disorderly Conduct in connection with an incident shortly after 2 last Friday morning.  An Oil City police officer attempted to make a traffic stop in the Municipal Lot on Center Street.  Police say the driver, Kenneth Fentem failed to stop as required, eventually stopping blocks away in front of 112 Seely Avenue.  Police say Fentem got out of his truck, threw his keys toward the officer, began yelling at the officer and refused to stop when ordered.  Police say Fentem was found to be under the influence of an alcoholic beverage and was arrested.  He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Andrew Fish in nearby Cornplanter Township and lodged in the Venango County Jail after failing to post $5,000 bond.  

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GTDF Announces Running Event Fund Grant Recipients

Each year, hundreds of runners travel to Titusville to

participate in the growing number of recreational

running events that celebrate the rich heritage and

physical beauty of the greater Titusville area. Now, race

event coordinators have a new source of support to

help make runners – and the friends and family they

bring with them – feel welcome.

The Greater Titusville Development Foundation has established the Recreational Running Event Fund in order to support projects, activities, and amenities that enhance local race events and help provide a memorable experience for race participants, volunteers, and spectators. Seed money for the fund came from the Titusville Leisure Services Foundation.

GTDF is announcing the recipients of Recreational Running Event Fund (RREF) grants for 2017 events:

 Friends of Drake Well will use their grant to enhance two popular local events:

o Meet-U in 5 & ½ participants will receive welcome packets that include Titusville Chamber gift cards and restaurant/shopping gift certificates and discounts. This event, which takes place on May 20, 2017, features unique 5 and 13 mile trail races that start and finish at Drake Well Museum and Park and utilize the Gerard Hiking Trail in Oil Creek State Park. Proceeds from this event benefit the museum’s Mobile Energy Education Training Unit (MEET-U) educational outreach program. For race registration information go to http://runrace.net/findarace.php?id=17140PA&tab=a3.

Drake Well Marathon & ½, scheduled for August 6, 2017, will offer family-friendly outdoor activities for race participants, their families and spectators. )Activities that the RREF grant will support include a Bicycle Rodeo, a Bouncy House, and Old-fashioned 19th century games and activities. Proceeds from this event benefit the museum’s educational, interpretive and community programming. Race registration information can be found at http://runrace.net/findarace.php?id=17218PA. 

 A grant to the March of Dimes Oil Region March for Babies will allow them to bring back the very popular balloon artist, Real Magic Steve. This event draws 300 – 350 walkers and runners from surrounding areas, who raise money to support the mission of the March of Dimes, which is to fund research, provide education, and advocate so that all babies will be born healthy. This year’s event will take place on April 22 at Pitt-Titusville. Registration is from 9:00 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. with the walk leaving at 10:00 a.m. Walkers will be treated to lunch, live dance performances, music, bounce house, building with Home Depot, ice cream and cotton candy upon their return to campus.

 

Adam Peterson, an avid runner who coordinates the Oil Valley Race Series, will use his RREF grant to purchase safety equipment that can be used by any Titusville area race coordinator.   Items to be purchased with the grant include orange safety vests, “Race in Progress” signs and pedestals, and pop-up canopies for registration tables and finish lines to protect race volunteers from the elements. These items will be stored at a central location and made available to eligible event coordinators upon request. For more information about borrowing these items, contact Peterson at 815-673-8825 . 

 The Titusville YMCA will use their RREF grant to help launch a new event, the Trail of Treats, a Halloween-themed race to be held on October 28, 2017.  The event will include a timed race through the trails of Oil Creek State Park and a fun run around the dike at Drake Well Museum. Participants in the fun run, who are encouraged to come in costume, will be provided with trick-or-treat bags to collect candy, and all participants will be treated to hot cider at the end of the race. The RREF grant will help purchase treat bags and refreshments. 

 The YWCA of Titusville will use their RREF grant to purchase

 A commercial grade bounce house that will be used for the Race Against Racism (April 1, 2017) and the 5K Turkey Trot (November 23, 2017) that will also be available for use by other Titusville area race coordinators and not-for-profit community events. Non-profits using the bounce house will be asked to make a nominal contribution for use of the bounce house, which will be used to repair or replace the bounce house when it is no longer safe to be used. Contact Ashleigh English at the YWCA for more information. 

Start and Finish banners. The banners will be generic so that they may be used by any Titusville area running event. The banners will be made in-house at Drake Well Museum, who will loan poles for the banners to groups that need them for their race. 

 The United Way of the Titusville Region will hold an event new to the area on July 21, 2017. The Twilight Run is a non-timed family 5k run/walk held at sunset with special lighting along the route. A RREF will pay for kits of glow items for participants to increase their visibility and safety during the event. 

 The City of Titusville will use a RREF grant to purchase six vertical banner poles to be placed on both sides of the road at main routes entering the City.  The banner poles will be used to welcome visitors and advertise running and other events and will be in the same style as the new street sign poles being installed this spring. Event coordinators should contact the city for details about purchasing and placing banners on the poles. 

The idea for the fund came from comments made by Tom Jennings, director of the Oil Creek 100 Trail Runs, to local officials. “The OC 100 draws more than 400 runners annually from nearly every state in the country, as well as several international runners. They make a significant economic impact on our community, not just during the weekend of the event, but throughout the year when they visit for training runs,” explained Deb Eckelberger, Chair of the Titusville Trail Town Action Team and Director of Business Development at Titusville Community Development Agencies. “Tom pointed out that we could do more to make our visitors feel welcome, and encourage them to come back for additional years. In partnership with Titusville Leisure Services Foundation, GTDF established the Recreational Running Event Fund to help accomplish that.” 

Local groups rose to the challenge. “They talked to one another about how they could work together, and the result was an impressive variety of proposals for things that will benefit not just one group or event, but the community as a whole,” said GTDF Vice President Terry Funk. “I’ve said before that the strength of Titusville lies in the fantastic people that live here, and the collaboration and generosity of the proposals that we got for this opportunity show that once again.”

 

For more information about the Recreational Running Event Fund, contact GTDF at 814-827-4756 

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Wolf Administration Announces Traffic Deaths Drop to Record Low in 2016, Bucking National Trend Crash Information Tool Updated, Strategic Highway Safety Plan Released

Harrisburg, PA – PennDOT reports traffic deaths in Pennsylvania reached a record low in 2016 with 1,188 fatalities on Pennsylvania roadways last year, a new low since record keeping began in 1928, and seven less than 2015. 

“Our biggest priority is to keep the public safe through innovation, roadway improvements, and educational outreach,” Governor Wolf said. “As fatality numbers continue to trend downward, we still need to change driver behavior, keeping in mind that each person killed in a crash is a member of someone’s family.” 

While the number of highway deaths dropped in many types of crashes, there were significant decreases noted in run-off the road, hit fixed object, and drinking driver fatalities. Fatalities in run-off the road crashes dropped from 580 in 2015 to 518. Hit fixed object fatalities also decreased from 459 in 2015 to 401 last year. Deaths attributed to drinking-driver-related crashes declined to 263, down from 306 in 2015.  

Fatalities increased in some types of crashes. There were 279 fatalities that occurred at intersections, up from 251 in 2015. Also, pedestrian deaths resulting from crashes increased to 172 up from 153 in 2015.  

Underscoring PennDOT’s commitment to changing driver behavior and work toward zero deaths, the 2017 Strategic Highway Safety Plan (SHSP) was released in February. The SHSP was developed to maintain and build on momentum achieved by the state's previous strategic plans and outlines both existing and new strategies that can be applied throughout the state. The plan, along with other highway safety information, is viewable at www.penndot.gov/safety. 

In addition, from 2012 to 2016, PennDOT has invested more than $376 million in Federal Highway Safety Improvement Program funds on 434 unique safety projects. During that same timeframe, another $50 million was invested in low-cost safety improvements at approximately 4,000 locations. Examples of low-cost safety countermeasures include centerline and edge-line rumble strips, and signing and pavement markings. PennDOT also invests about $20 million annually in federal grant funds for safety education and enforcement efforts statewide. 

The department also unveiled a new mapping tool on its Pennsylvania Crash Information Tool (PCIT) website, www.dotcrashinfo.pa.gov, which uses reportable crash data from law enforcement to assist in reviewing this data. The new feature allows the public to query and also map fatality and crash data. 

 

The site also includes a search function that allows the public to retrieve data based on specified criteria. Users can display data showing the number of crashes, people involved, or vehicles involved. It can be filtered by Timeframe, County/Municipality, and by various crash characteristics. Additional statistics available in the site are crash, fatality and major injury statistics as well as the department’s annual Crash Facts Books. 

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