An elderly Pennsylvania woman received a bill for $1,200 from a contractor whom she hired to shovel and sweep snow for her one time.
The contractor said that he can’t run his business on minimum wage, which is $7.25 an hour. Instead, he appears to charge $400 an hour.
The 88-year-old, who told WJAC-TV she wished to remain anonymous, said she saw an ad in a newspaper for Tri-County Chimney Service. She called Tri-County to remove snow from her five window awnings and the top of her carport.
"With a senior citizen, I thought, well surely he wouldn't … If he would've said $500, I wouldn't have thought so much about it, but $1,200 really is hitting the bottom of the barrel,” she said.
She said she was so shocked that she didn’t want to argue with the man and wrote him a check for $1,200.
When WJAC-TV contacted the owner of Tri-County Chimney Service, Mike Robson, he claimed the figure was fair.
Robson said he worked on her house for two to three hours. He called the woman’s home a high-risk job that comes with insurance and liability.
Another local business, Milkie’s Landscaping, told WJAC-TV it only charges $40 an hour for the same service.
Another snow shower is forecasted for Johnstown Thursday, but the woman will think twice before hiring anyone to remove snow again.
"I was careful, but he caught me off guard," she said. "I think when you're 88 years old, surely in the name of God, somebody's not going to pull stuff like that on you."
Pennsylvania citizens reported sky-high electric bills this winter – some of them three times the normal amount.
"These spikes in the price of electricity are alarming and have put many consumers, especially the poor and elderly, in a dire situation," Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane said in February.
Pennsylvania State Police released an excerpt from a 911 call placed by a 28-year-old man when an angry driver followed him for 15 miles and shot him dead
Timothy Davison called 911 on Jan. 4 to report being shot at.
Just after crossing into Pennsylvania, police believe his car was rammed by a pickup truck onto a grassy median, where the other driver shot Davison dead.
There is no evidence that Davison instigated the incident or provoked the shooter, Pennsylvania State Police Capt. Steven Junkin said in January.
Davison had called 911 in Maryland, but the call was cut off. When he called the second time he was on Interstate 81 in Franklin County, Pa. This time he said the driver was shooting at him.
Operator: “OK. Were you the one that called about the Ford Ranger, right?”
Davison: “Yeah, yeah, yeah. The one that just hit me.”
Operator: “What do you mean -- they hit you? Hit your with a car or ...?”
Davison: “Yeah, smashed me with the car. Pushed me across the median.”
Ten minutes later, Davison was found dead in his SUV, which hit a snowbank near Antrim Township.
Police are still looking for a 1993-1997 dark lapis blue Ford Ranger pickup truck.
Davison was returning to Poland, Maine, after visiting family in Orlando, Fla., during the holidays.
Numerous animals were removed from a Chambersburg home after an investigation into child pornography.
Animal Cruelty charges are pending against Larvene V. Wilson, 67, of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, after “numerous unhealthy and one dead animal being found in his home” when a search warrant was executed regarding child pornography on February 12.
Wilson was charged with felony child pornography resulting from an investigation into a post on Facebook. Chambersburg Borough Police said the Cumberland County District Attorney’s Office received a case referral from Delaware County on February 6, involving a cyber tip for child pornography.
A Facebook employee had alerted Delaware County after discovering that a Facebook user had uploaded potential child pornography to his Facebook account.
A search warrant requesting the IP address and subscriber information revealed the account holder lived in the 300 block of Tolbert Avenue in Chambersburg and was identified as Wilson, police said.
When Chambersburg Police executed a search warrant on Feb. 12 at Wilson’s residence and took him into custody, Wilson’s computer and other items were collected as evidence. Police say more counts of child pornography are pending as they complete their investigation.
Upon reaching the Tolbert Avenue scene, police said they discovered numerous unhealthy and one dead animal in the home. The Humane Society was contacted and removed all the animals. Animal cruelty charges are pending, said police.
Wilson was booked at Franklin County Jail with bail set at $100,000.
Source: The Sentinel
Pennsylvania man Timothy Antonio Diggs, 22, has been charged after he shot and killed a horse pulling an Amish buggy.
On Nov. 24, an Amish family of five reported hearing a “loud noise, described as sounding like a firecracker” as a car drove past them. Their horse ran wildly for a few moments before the buggy’s operator was able to get the animal to settle down. The family arrived home safely.
After arriving home, the family noticed blood coming from the horse’s mouth. They then saw a gunshot wound to his chest. The “firecracker” sound they heard was a gunshot. The family called a veterinarian to their home, but the horse died before the doctor reached their residence.
A necropsy of the horse confirmed that it died from a gunshot wound to the chest.
The East Lampeter Township Police Department conducted an investigation on Feb. 12, 2014. It identified Diggs as the shooter.
Diggs is being charged with five counts of recklessly endangering a person, cruelty to animals, and propulsion of missiles into an occupied vehicle or onto a roadway.
This is not Diggs' first run-in with the law. A December raid of his home found a stolen motorcycle and stolen firearms from two separate burglaries. Diggs is currently incarcerated at the Lancaster County Prison.
Anti-fracking activist Vera Scroggins has been barred from 312.5 square miles of Pennsylvania after a judge issued a court order making it illegal for her to be on any property owned or leased by Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation.
Scroggins, 63, can’t visit supermarkets, restaurants, drug stores, bowling alleys or any of her usual hangouts without the risk of fine or arrest.
"They might as well have put an ankle bracelet on me with a GPS on it and be able to track me wherever I go," Scroggins told The Guardian. "I feel like I am some kind of a prisoner, that my rights have been curtailed, have been restricted."
Cabot, one of the largest gas drillers in the state, holds the lease of 200,000 acres of land, nearly 40 percent of northeastern Pennsylvania, where Scroggins lives.
The company accused her of trespassing and causing irreparable harm to their business.
While the temporary injunction was granted Oct. 21, Cabot will seek to make it permanent in a March 24 hearing. Scroggins has hired an attorney to help her fight the injuction.
Since Cabot was not ordered to identify or map the areas where it holds leases, she’s been left trying to calculate just what roads or buildings she’s not allowed to use.
"We need a map," she said. "We need to know where I can and cannot go. Can I stop here, or can I not stop here? Is it OK to be here if I go to a business or if I go to a home? I have had to ask and check out every person I go to: 'are you leased to Cabot?'"
"It seems to be an extraordinarily heavy-handed reaction by industry and one which was extremely out of proportion to what she has been doing," said Kate Sinding, an attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council.
Scroggins has long been an outspoken critic of fracking the Marcellus Shale. She gives tours in the Dimock area, including those recently given to Yoko Ono, Sean Lennon and Susan Sarandon.
A Pennsylvania pastor threw out one of his church members for being gay, announced the expulsion to the entire church, and then denounced him for going public about the incident.
Pastor David Slautterback told the Ambassador’s Bible Chapel Sunday that a 20-year-old Bobbie Pierce had to be thrown out because he wouldn’t change his mind concerning his sexuality.
Pierce says he was a member of the church in Newberry Township for years and was even baptized there.
The church has no denominational affiliations and claims to “hold to the historic fundamentals of the Christian faith.”
Slautterback and other church leaders said Friday Pierce can no longer be a member, but he can attend services there as long as he doesn’t take divisive stances or speak contrary to scripture.
When Pierce shared a letter he received from the church with the York Daily Record, the church turned on him.
"We're accused of hate, Bobbie has accused us of hate," Slautterback said. "I think Bobbie's action (of talking to the York Daily Record) is an action of hate."
Slautterback said he doesn’t hate Pierce and that the church only wishes to save his soul.
"We placed Bobbie under church discipline out of love for Bobbie and regard for his soul," Slautterback said.
The church's website says, “We believe in disciplining Christians through God's Word so they may live a testimonial life for Christ, thus becoming effective for God's use in leading His called to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
Pierce says his sexuality and pressure from the church has made him depressed at times, but his friends have come to his aid.
"I've heard so many stories of someone who is homosexual who has a strict Christian family, who commits suicide," Pierce said.
He claims he still believes he is a Christian and that "homosexuality isn't a sin, it isn't a choice."
"The members of the church are like a family," he said. "That's where I grew up. Even with the non-acceptance of homosexuality, it's still my church where I felt comfortable."
Slautterback says homosexuality is an avoidable sin.
"I do not believe that a homosexual person has to be homosexual any more than I believe that a person who is inclined to steal steals," Slautterback said.
When confronted with news that other church leaders have a more inclusive policy on homosexuality, he said churches may use the same Bible but not all “come to it with the respect” as his church.
A Pennsylvania man has been charged with over 5,000 counts of sexual abuse.
The man, 55-year-old Donald C. Burrell, is currently in jail on a $2.2 million bond. He is accused of sexually abusing a girl from 1991-2012. The victim was just seven years old when the abuse began.
Burrell was charged with 2,870 counts of rape and 2,248 counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse. He was also charged with eight counts of child pornography possession and another eight counts of photographing a child in a prohibited sexual act.
Did we mention he’s a drug dealer too? Burrell has also been charged with 25 counts of delivery of a controlled substance and an additional count each of possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and delivery of a controlled substance. Towanda, Pennsylvania police believe Burrell distributed over 700 grams of bath salts between 2011-2013.
Police were first tipped off to Burrell’s criminal activity after he was assaulted by Blake Dieffenbach in 2011. Dieffenbach told police he assaulted Burrell after a drug deal between the two fell apart.
While investigating the assault, police found evidence of narcotic possession and distribution throughout Burrell’s home. This led to further investigations, which soon uncovered the man’s deplorable sexual abuse history.
Burrell was arraigned in district court and is being held in Bradford County Correctional Facility. A preliminary court hearing is pending.
A man who made several 911 calls before his death was run off the road in Pennsylvania by an angry motorist and fatally shot after 15-mile chase, authorities said Friday.
There is no evidence that the victim, 28-year-old Timothy Davison, instigated or provoked the shooter, Pennsylvania State Police Capt. Steven Junkin said Friday.
Davison was driving home to Maine via Interstate 81 on Jan. 4. Police believe he may have encountered the shooter, who drove a "dark colored" Ford Ranger XLT pickup, on Interstate 70 in Maryland and traveled about 15 miles, with the shooter in pursuit.
The details of his 911 calls have not been released.
"This actor had murderous intent," said Junkin. "We obviously have an individual who was so incensed that he continued to pursue Mr. Davison."
Davison’s Mitsubishi Montero was forced of the road in Antrim Township, Penn. He was shot multiple times. His death was ruled a homicide.
"How concerned are we that it'll happen again?" Junkin asked. "We obviously have an individual out there who was so incensed that he continued to pursue Mr. Davison and took it to that next step. He murdered an individual for whatever slight that he perceived. Will this person do it again? We don't know. We don't want to take that chance."
A task force of local cops, FBI agents and state police from Pennsylvania and Maryland are currently searching for the killer.
Davison’s uncle, James Allocca, told CNN that his family just "wants justice before someone else gets hurt."
His relatives say the pipefitter and commercial welder was not an aggressive driver.
“He never sweated the small stuff,” his mother, Theresa Allocca, told the Press Herald. “If someone had cut him off, he might say ‘jerk’ and let it go. He wouldn’t have engaged in what we see on L.A. freeways. He just wanted to get home.”
His funeral service was held Saturday.
A 35-year-old woman in Pennsylvania is suing Allegheny County claiming her arm had to be amputated after sheriff’s deputies injured it and the jail’s medical provider ignored her pain.
Amy J. Needham was arrested on April 2 after a warrant was issued because she missed a preliminary court hearing, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.
She claims sheriff’s employees broke down a bathroom door to take her into custody. The complaint says she was simply using the restroom when they Tasered her, applied arm bars and wrist locks, and put on handcuffs "that were too tight.”
She says the rough treatment resulted in "compartment syndrome," or increased pressure in the muscle compartment, that can results in muscle and nerve damage.
Her attorney, Marvin Leibowitz, said she was spent one week in jail and made 16 requests to see a physician. The mother of three was eventually hospitalized at UPMC Mercy, where doctors amputated the arm.
"She feels that her life is ruined," said Leibowitz. "I think she's having psychological problems. You're 35 years old and you lose your arm."
In April, Needham had failed to appear in court on a misdemeanor charge that was later dropped. She pleaded guilty to a disorderly conduct charge in August, but was not sentenced to punishment.
She pleaded guilty this month to charges stemming from her April arrest, including two counts of assault and one count of resisting arrest. She was given nine months of probation.
Police in Lancaster, Pennsylvania are investigating the tragic death of a 2-month-old girl on Christmas Eve. The infant died from a single gunshot wound. According to police, the gun belongs to one of the child’s family members.
“Obviously, we are investigating exactly how it took place,” Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman said. “Not sure I can really articulate just how tragic it is that a 2-month-old baby was shot dead on Christmas Eve.”
Emergency responders tried to revive the child, but she was later pronounced dead at Lancaster General Hospital.
Authorities report that the suspected shooter is a male family member. He and all other family members are fully cooperating with police. It is not known at this time whether the shooting was intentional or accidental. The investigation is ongoing. A police statement says that until more information is gathered, no charges will be pressed.
If the child’s death is indeed ruled a homicide, she will be the third Lancaster child under the age of two to be killed this year.
Lancaster County coroner Dr. Stephen Diamantori will reportedly rule on the cause and manner of death after the autopsy. Lancaster police ensured the public that the shooting is an isolated incident and that there is no greater public safety concern.