by News Department on 03/14/18

Charges for threats...

An Ashland man was arrested Tuesday for making threats online towards local police and county officials.

According to Skook News, Ashland police were notified of a social media post that was threatening in nature towards police officers, judges and other public officials. 

Upon investigating the social media page and the individual who posted the threatening posts, police identified the person as Bart Aquino, of Ashland. 

A warrant was served on Aquino at his residence without incident. 

He was arraigned by Magisterial District Judge Reiley and locked up in Schuylkill County Prison unable to post $75,000 straight cash bail.


by News Department on 03/13/18


by News Department on 03/13/18

Federal court for drug charges...

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that 28 year old David Castro, of Pottsville, pleaded guilty Thursday, March, 8th, 2018 to conspiracy to distribute more than 500 grams of methamphetamine, before U.S. District Court Judge Robert D. Mariani. 

According to Skook News, Castro, admitted to committing the offense between July 2016 and May 24, 2017, in and around Schuylkill County.

Castro was indicted by a grand jury along with three other persons in August 2017. The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Pennsylvania State Police, and local police from Schuylkill County. 

Judge Mariani ordered sentencing to be scheduled at a later date.


by News Department on 03/13/18

Halcovage to run for Congress...

Schuylkill County commissioners Chairman George F. Halcovage Jr. is running for Congress. 

According to the Republican Herald, Halcovage announced Monday that he will be running in the new 9th Congressional District, which includes Schuylkill, Carbon, Columbia, Lebanon and Montour counties, and portions of Berks, Luzerne and Northumberland counties. 

Also seeking Lou Baretta’s vacant seat in the district is Dan Meuser, former secretary of revenue under former Gov. Tom Corbett. 

Candidates need 1,000 signatures of registered voters in the party of which they are seeking to get on the ballot for the May 15 primary. 

The first day to circulate and file nomination petitions was Feb. 27; the last day is March 20. 

A complete time line about the petition process is available on the Pennsylvania Department of State website,


by News Department on 03/13/18

TAX Scam...

The Pennsylvania Department of Revenue is urging taxpayers and tax professionals to take extra precautions to protect their computer systems and data following recent reports of several tax-related scams. 

One new scam involves cyber criminals filing falsified tax returns and obtaining fraudulent tax refunds from taxpayers by posing as IRS officials and debt collectors. 

It starts when cyber criminals steal client data from tax professionals then use the stolen data to file fraudulent tax returns in the name of identity theft victims. 

If you are a victim of identity theft or discover a fraudulent Pennsylvania personal income tax return was filed using your identity, please contact the Department of Revenue’s Fraud Investigation Unit at 717-772-9297.


by News Department on 03/13/18

Drug charges...

A Shenandoah man is facing drug charges after being found with heroin and methamphetamine in West Hazleton over the weekend. 

According to Skook News, West Hazleton police encountered 24 year old Jared George Azar who was wanted on an arrest warrant from a Schuylkill County Police agency. 

Azar was in possession of heroin and crystal methamphetamine when he was taken into custody.

 He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge James Dixon, and committed to the Luzerne County Correctional Facility unable to post bail.


by News Department on 03/12/18


by News Department on 03/12/18

Hershey expanding...

The Hershey Company, out of Hershey, PA, unveiled plans to expand its operation at the Humboldt Industrial park. 

The Company is expanding its production line for its "KitKat" bar. It's a $60 million dollar investment that translates into approximately 120 new jobs. 

The Hazleton Hershey plant currently employs 450 people. That number will increase to nearly 600 when the expansion is completed next year. 

The company officials and VIPs broke ground for the expansion on Friday.


by News Department on 03/12/18

Bridge work...

PennDOT Engineering District 5 announced that work will begin today, to repair six bridges on Interstate 81 between Exit 104 (PA 125) and Exit 112 (PA 25) in Schuylkill County. 

Crews will be repairing decks, beams, wing-walls, and guiderail on the bridges. 

Motorists can expect weekday lane restrictions between 6:30 AM and 4:30 PM on I-81 north between exits 104 and 112. 

Updates will be provided whenever traffic restrictions change on I-81 north or south. 

The project is expected to be complete in October.


by News Department on 03/12/18

Fatal Crash...

A 21-year-old Andreas man died from injuries he suffered in a one-vehicle crash on Route 309 in West Penn Township early Sunday morning. 

According to the Republican Herald, Schuylkill County Deputy Coroner David Truskowsky pronounced Matthew Fannock dead at the scene of the crash that occurred about 6 a.m. on Route 309, just south of the intersection with Route 443 westbound.

 Truskowsky said Fannock was a front-seat passenger in a vehicle along with the driver and another passenger. 

Truskowsky said he did not know the extent of the injuries suffered by the other two people inside the vehicle. 

Fannock was not wearing a seat belt.


by News Department on 03/12/18

Fatal crash near Ashland...

A Pottsville man died in a crash in Locust Dale on Sunday. According to Skook News, emergency personnel were dispatched to 3108 Main Street, Locust Dale, around 1:45pm for a one vehicle crash involving a pickup into a home with entrapment.

 When crews arrived they found an unconscious male inside a pickup truck that had crashed into a parked van and the side of a home. 

The victim was identified as 69 year old Thomas Barlow, of Pottsville. 

Authorities said a virtual autopsy is scheduled for today. 

A woman and her son were inside the home at the time but were not injured.


by News Department on 03/09/18


by News Department on 03/09/18

Truck night in America...

41 year old Jesse Abdo, of Aristes, is one of 50 competitors who has been chosen for a new hour-long show on the History Channel called “Truck Night in America,” where truck and jeep owners from across the country challenge themselves and their vehicles. 

Each episode features five drivers going head to head in three challenges, testing their vehicle’s speed, strength and handling. 

The drivers may work on their vehicles between competitions to prepare for the next challenge. 

The two finalists compete in a 3-mile obstacle course, where they endure jumps, mountains of crushed cars, and drive through a snake-infested swamp.

 Abdo’s episode will air at 10 p.m. April 12.


by News Department on 03/09/18

Fire in Walker Twp...

No one was injured in a house fire Wednesday in Walker Township. 

According to the Republican Herald, Chad Felty, fire chief of New England Fire Company of Walker Township, said the house at 87 Gameland Drive was “severely damaged and burned” in the blaze that began about 9:17 p.m. 

He said, “The house was fully involved when crews arrived, adding it was a “complete loss.” No one was in the house at the time, as the homeowner had reported the fire from a nearby location. 

He refused medical treatment and was given lodging at the Pottsville Ramada by the Red Cross. 

The cause is still being determined. Pennsylvania state police fire marshal Trooper John Burns of the Frackville station is investigating.


by News Department on 03/09/18

BBT to close...

Bank and the drive-thru in Mill Creek are closing in May, leaving the borough without a standalone financial institution. 

According to the Republican Herald, the Saint Clair employees will be moving to the Pottsville branch, so the Schuylkill United Way must now find a new home as the organization leases space above the city bank. 

Kelly Malone, Schuylkill United Way executive director, said Thursday they were notified by certified letter from a real estate lease administration manager that they had to move by May 31. 

An extension would be considered if needed.


by News Department on 03/09/18

Immigrants apprehended...

Mahanoy City Police apprehended three illegal immigrants during a traffic stop Thursday morning.

According to Skook News, police initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle at the intersection North Main and East Vine Streets around 10:20am, which resulted in the identification and detention of three illegal aliens.

 24 year old Crystian Cruz-Chavarria, 38 year old Leticia Chagolla- Escobedo and 46 year old Alejandro Salmeron- Fuentes, were detained when their illegal immigration status was discovered. 

It was also learned that Salmeron- Fuentes was previously deported four times and he currently had an active warrant for his arrest at the time of apprehension.

All individuals were turned over to agents of the United States Immigration Customs and Enforcement.


by News Department on 03/08/18


by News Department on 03/08/18

Extras needed...

A production company is seeking 50 extras for a TV pilot about the Franklin Street Station in Reading.

 Marabella Entertainment & Education Enterprises says filming will take place Saturday and Sunday, with extras needed on Sunday. 

According to a press release from the company, people of every age, ethnicity and ability are invited to participate. 

Anyone interested can fill out an application online by noon Friday. The company’s extras coordinator will confirm specific times and location to those who respond by that deadline. 

The production company also announced that seven of the 12 actors in its main cast are natives of Reading and neighboring communities.


by News Department on 03/08/18

Suspect in shooting death...

A man accused of shooting at police and under investigation for a shooting death in Shamokin, told a Northumberland County judge to just give him five years so he could leave his arraignment, Wednesday.

 Jose Colon is accused of threatening his roomate, holding him hostage and shooting at police from his apartment on West Sunbury Street in the early morning hours of February 27th. 

Police responded there after being called to a shooting on Rock Street, where they found the body of Kasandra Ortiz. 

Although Colon has not been charged in connection with her shooting death, authorities say he is under investigation for the incident. 

Colon's bail was set at $1 million dollars for the attempted murder of law enforcement.


by News Department on 03/08/18

Vehicle Arson...

A vehicle stolen from an auto shop in Jim Thorpe last month has been located, but severely burned.

 Police continue to investigate the incident, which occurred sometime between Feb.18-21. That’s when police said a blue 2010 Chevy Silverado was stolen from Ken’s Auto on North Street. 

The vehicle was located in Packer Township on Feb. 21, but was found to have been severely burned. 

The State Police Hazleton barracks is investigating the arson, while the Jim Thorpe Police Department is investigating the theft. 

Anyone with information is asked to call 570-325-4995.

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