Attorneys: Galli Watched Porn On Work Computer

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Accusations against an Exeter policeman are no longer a secret, though they were supposed to be.

Sgt. Len Galli was suspended for watching hardcore pornography and arranging sexual relationships online during working hours while using a borough computer, attorneys hired by the borough said in court documents filed Thursday.

Read the court filing

An expert’s examination of Galli’s work computer determined he viewed at least 4,700 pornographic files and spent significant amounts of borough time communicating online with those soliciting “no strings attached sexual encounters,” the court documents reveal.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/attorneys-galli-watched-porn-on-work-computer-1.1670428

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Heroin, Gun Seized By Police In Wilkes-Barre

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — City police Anti-Crime Unit and state police Vice and Narcotics seized about 200 heroin packets, a loaded handgun with an altered serial number and a loaded rifle when they arrested three people from Philadelphia on drug trafficking offenses on Thursday.

Authorities said Marissa A. Ramos, 23, Jorge Esay Mojica, 23, and Bryan Mojica, 19, in a buy-bust operation on Scott Street.

A 9mm handgun and a semi-automatic rifle were found during the arrest. The rifle was reported stolen to the state police at Shickshinny.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news/1336598/Heroin-gun-seized-by-police

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Dunmore May Condemn Homes Where Drugs Are Sold

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

DUNMORE, PA – Drug dealers who settle in the borough may soon find themselves homeless.

Borough council next month will consider amending Dunmore’s building code ordinance to temporarily condemn homes and apartments where people are selling or manufacturing drugs.

“A one-time zone violation of drug activity on site will result in immediate closure of the property,” solicitor Thomas Cummings told councilmen on Monday. “It mirrors (ordinances) used by other communities in an effort to stem the drug problem which … destroys the neighborhood, destroys the property value and just creates a downward spiral.”

Borough lawmakers were already thinking of doing more to combat drugs when Dunmore police and Lackawanna County detectives found a large cache of drugs and related paraphernalia at a Prescott Avenue home last month.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/dunmore-may-condemn-homes-where-drugs-are-sold-1.1668476

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Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Last In Beating Recession

Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metro...

Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metropolitan Statistical Area in the northeastern part of the of . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the race to climb out of recession, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre metropolitan area is dead last among the 100 largest urban areas nationwide.

That is the finding in a recent “Metro Monitor” study by The Brookings Institution that tracked the economic performance of 100 metropolitan areas on four indicators: jobs, unemployment, output (gross product) and house prices. The analysis focused on the change of the indicators during three time periods: the recession, recovery and a combination of both.

During the recovery period, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre ranked 100, or last, trailing Little Rock, Ark., (99) and Greater Hartford, Conn. (98).

“In terms of recovery, it has been pretty slow” for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, said Siddharth Kulkarni, a research assistant in Brooking’s Metropolitan Policy Program.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/scranton-w-b-last-in-beating-recession-1.1667766

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Genetti’s Upgrading Hotel In Wilkes-Barre

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — The top two penthouse floors of Best Western Genetti Hotel and Conference Center in downtown Wilkes-Barre will be converted into the new “Oyster Boutique Hotel,” hotel owner Gus Genetti and Oyster Restaurant owner Thom Greco said this morning.

Genetti said it will cost $200,000 to $250,000 to upgrade the rooms to create a small intimate luxury hotel with amenities such as new furnishings, technology and art. The rooms will cater to those looking for high-end rooms, he said.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/genetti-s-upgrading-hotel-in-wilkes-barre-1.1666257

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PennDOT Plans 6-Mile I-81 Widening

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

DUNMORE, PA — The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation plans to rebuild and widen six miles of Interstate 81 from the Luzerne County line to the Central Scranton Expressway.

But that’s not expected to happen anytime soon.

According to information from PennDOT spokesman Mike Taluto, the project is at least five years away and would take three to four years to complete. The estimated cost is $174 million.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/1316029/PennDOT-plans-6-mile-I-81-widening

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Court Documents: Sherman Hills Sale Price Tops $16M

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The current owners of the troubled Sherman Hills Apartments in Wilkes-Barre will receive more than $16 million should a proposed sale be finalized this month, according to court documents filed Tuesday in Luzerne County Court.

Family members of a murder victim are trying to block the sale or have the sale proceeds placed in escrow, claiming the sale of the low-income housing project would make the complex “judgement proof.”

On Tuesday, lawyers for Sherman Hills filed their response, saying the sale should be allowed to proceed.  The sales agreement was attached to the response and revealed Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Park Management, the complex’s owner, will be paid $16.2 million from the sale.

Survivors of murder victim Shantique Goodson, 27, fatally shot at the complex on Nov. 11, 2013, are seeking an injunction to block the sale, or place the sale proceeds in escrow, until the lawsuit plays out. A hearing on the matter is scheduled for Wednesday morning in Luzerne County Court.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/court-documents-sherman-hills-sale-price-tops-16m-1.1664522

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Man Charged In Fatal Stabbing In Wilkes-Barre

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — Luzerne County Coroner’s Office Tuesday morning identified Charles Edmonds, 27, who died from apparent stab wounds he suffered during a fight inside an apartment building on South Hancock Street Monday night.

An autopsy is scheduled later today at Wilkes-Barre General Hospital.

Edmonds died at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center in Plains Township.

Police said Tuesday morning they charged Al-Tariq Peterkin, 31, with an open count of criminal homicide. He was jailed at the county correctional facility without bail.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news/1311090/Man-charged-in-fatal-stabbing-in-Wilkes-Barre

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Poll: Those In NEPA Among Most Miserable In U.S.

Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metro...

Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metropolitan Statistical Area in the northeastern part of the of . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  Lancaster, PA ranked 21st on the list :)  The happiest of any Pennsylvania Metropolitan Area.  Hey now!

People in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre metropolitan area are among the most miserable in the nation, according to a report that ranks the area 177th out of 189 it surveyed to gauge residents’ sense of well-being.

Their continuing economic downslide, bad memories, misperceptions and even a lack of sunlight may play a part in Northeast Pennsylvanians’ gloomy outlook, some local experts say in commenting on the State of American Well-Being, the report released last week by Gallup and Healthways.

The highest-ranked area was Provo-Orem, Utah, and the lowest-ranked was the Huntington, W.Va.-Ashland, Ky. area. More than 178,000 people across the country were interviewed last year, including a sample size of 1,092 from the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area.

The survey asked people to rate their life evaluation – a combination of current situation evaluation and the anticipated situation in five years – emotional health, work environment, physical health, healthy behaviors and basic access to health care and other necessities.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/poll-those-in-nepa-among-most-miserable-in-u-s-1.1663838

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Jewelcor Wants To Extend Wilkes-Barre’s Coal Street

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — What the city can’t do, the owners of the Jewelcor property want to with the extension of Coal Street for development.

Plans are to continue the street west at the intersection with Wilkes-Barre Boulevard by constructing a five-lane roadway, said Joe Lakowski, project manager with Jewelcor Inc.

“We have two potential companies that want to go on the corners,” Lakowski said Friday.

Jewelcor president and chief executive officer Seymour Holtzman and his wife, Evelyn, who own the property, are seeking a construction easement to build the roadway on city property. The easement is listed on the agenda for City Council’s work session Tuesday night.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/1304638/Jewelcor-wants-to-extend-W-Bs-Coal-St.

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Lackawanna State Forest To Grow By 3,000 Acres

Locator Map of Lackawanna State Forest, Pennsy...

Locator Map of Lackawanna State Forest, Pennsylvania, United States (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

CONYNGHAM TOWNSHIP, PA — When state Sen. John Yudichak and state Rep. Gerald Mullery were growing up, they used to play in the shadow of the Avondale Mine area and the Plymouth flats.

The two legislators, both 43 and friends since boyhood, are familiar with the landscape that Friday became part of the Enhance Penn’s Woods project — a two-year, more than $200 million initiative launched by Gov. Tom Corbett to repair and improve Pennsylvania’s state parks and forests.

“John and I have the coal chips in our knees to prove it,” Mullery, D-Newport Township, said. “And now we’re here today to preserve and reclaim mine-scarred land so our children and grandchildren will have pristine and maintained natural areas to enjoy.”

At a chilly news conference Friday on the banks of the Susquehanna River, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Ellen Ferretti announced the state will add more than 3,000 acres to the Lackawanna State Forest with the acquisition of the Mocanaqua tract in Conyngham, Newport and Slocum townships.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/news/1299045/Lackawanna-State-Forest-to-grow-by-3000-acres

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New Businesses Will Open In Theater Complex

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA – An e-cigarette business and roofing business are moving into the movie theater complex in downtown Wilkes-Barre, leaving just one open corner space available for lease.

Jackson Township resident Allen Morrow plans to open Xhale Vapor Lounge and roofing business Green Rhino Builders in empty space on South Washington Street in City Centre next month.

Morrow said he is moving his office for his roofing business from Dallas to downtown Wilkes-Barre and will open the e-cigarette lounge in front. He became interested in e-cigarettes after switching to them from traditional cigarettes six months ago.

Morrow said e-cigarettes are safer and since he switched, he feels better and can breathe better. Some health organizations, however, have been pushing for the Food and Drug Administration to regulate e-cigarettes.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/new-businesses-will-open-in-theater-complex-1.1661693

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11 New Wilkes-Barre Fire Recruits Added

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — While Shirley Cook sat watching her grandson Jeremy being sworn in as one of the 11 new fire department recruits, she had tucked into her purse a black-and-white photo of her grandfather, who was a city fireman in the 1800s.

The photo showed a couple horse-drawn wagons outside the Northampton Street fire station. Cook, 85, of Scranton, pointed to one of the drivers, Reuben Daley, and said, “This would be his great-great-grandfather.”

Cook retrieved the photo from many she has at home and planned to make a copy for her grandson.

The equipment has since changed and so has the training that Jeremy Cook and the 10 others will undergo to be able to do their jobs of fighting fires, rescuing people from the Susquehanna River, delivering babies or facing whatever situation they’re presented with on the more than 10,000 runs annually.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/1298535/11-new-W-B-fire-recruits-added

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City Mayor Sues Scranton Redevelopment Authority, And Board Member

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lackawanna County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mayor Bill Courtright filed suit against a city authority board Monday, seeking to depose and replace a board member with his own appointee.

Former Mayor Chris Doherty illegally appointed Peter Riebe to the Scranton Redevelopment Authority board, Mr. Courtright contends in a lawsuit filed on his behalf by city solicitor Jason A. Shrive.

The lawsuit escalates an ongoing battle between Mr. Courtright and the authority board, which refuses to recognize the mayor’s appointment on Feb. 18 of Timothy Perry as Mr. Riebe’s replacement.

The authority is an independent body that plays a critical role in the city’s redevelopment and blight removal. It has previously argued Mr. Riebe’s term will not expire until next year.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/city-mayor-sues-scranton-redevelopment-authority-and-board-member-1.1660441

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Heroin, Marijuana Found In Car With Kids In Wilkes-Barre

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — City police pursuing two men after a hand-to-hand exchange on South Main Street found heroin and marijuana in a vehicle with three young children.

Police said heroin packets in zip-lock bags were found in an open can of Natty Daddy beer and a bag of marijuana was found in the console of the car driven by 29-year-old Tyrell Lee Dunbar, according to charges filed.

Dunbar said the three children, ages 1, 3 and 5, inside the car were his kids. The children were turned over to their grandmother, police said.

Dunbar, of Sambourne Street, Wilkes-Barre, was charged with three counts of endangering the welfare of children and one count each of driving under the influence, driving with a suspended license, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/1292786/Heroin-marijuana-found-in-car-with-kids

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$100K In Sherman Hills Upgrades Begin

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — The proposed $100,000 worth of security improvements at the troubled Sherman Hills apartments are underway with the installation of a fence around the property.

Security consultant John Daly said work began last week.

“They’re putting up a 1-inch mesh fence like they proposed earlier and will move on to the next phase,” said of the McLane Investigative Group of New York City.

The possibility of losing the nearly $2 million in rent subsidies by the U.S. Housing and Urban Development prompted the owner Sherman Hills Realty of Brooklyn, N.Y. to promise changes at the complex that has been the scene of drug arrests, violent crimes and a fatal shooting last November.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/1289298/$100K-in-Sherman-Hills-upgrades-begin

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Recent Task Force Sweep Focused On Those Who Committed Crimes In Wilkes-Barre

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Luzerne County Sheriff’s Office released new information on the fugitive sweep on Wednesday that picked up 20 individuals with outstanding warrants in Luzerne County.

The Advanced Tactical Anti-Crime Unit – the newly formed task force comprised of local, state and federal law enforcement – conducted its second roundup, picking up individuals on warrants for everything from driving under the influence and retail theft to burglary and simple assault.

Luzerne County District Attorney Stefanie Salavantis said this sweep was supposed to focus not just on arresting those from Wilkes-Barre, but those who committed crimes in Wilkes-Barre but live outside of the city.

Out of the 20 people picked up, 12 of them were arrested in Wilkes-Barre, according to the sheriff’s office.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/recent-task-force-sweep-focused-on-those-who-committed-crimes-in-w-b-1.1659093

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Victim’s Family Seeks Injunction To Stop Sale Of Sherman Hills

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Attorneys for survivors of a woman killed last year at the Sherman Hills Apartments are seeking an injunction to stop the sale of the troubled apartment complex in Wilkes-Barre.

The attorneys for Shantique Goodson’s family argue the sale of the Coal Street low-income housing project would make the complex “judgment proof” in a lawsuit they have planned against Sherman Hills.

Goodson died Nov. 11, 2013, after being shot several times at the complex. The shooting occurred just days after officials with the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development visited Sherman Hills to address “life-threatening security issues” that were spotlighted by high-profile violent crimes, the court documents say.

Local attorneys Jamie Anzalone and Patrick Doyle, of the Anzalone Law Offices in Wilkes-Barre, are asking a judge to grant an emergency injunction to block the sale of Sherman Hills due to the pending lawsuit in connection with Goodson’s death.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/victim-s-family-seeks-injunction-to-stop-sale-of-sherman-hills-1.1659101

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Wilkes-Barre City Council Adopts New Rules On Public Input

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WILKES-BARRE, PA — Against limited but vocal opposition, City Council on Thursday night imposed new limits on how people can address the body of elected officials during public meetings.

By a 4-0 vote, council amended ordinances on its rules and procedures, moving public speakers farther away and behind the rail separating council from the audience and requiring them to sign in before the start of the meeting.

Before the vote, several speakers who regularly attend the meetings urged council to reconsider. They suggested pushing back the start time so more people could attend and warned council about the consequences of approving the changes.

The new rules go into effect in 10 days. But had they been in place Betsy Sumers said she wouldn’t have had the opportunity to speak. She arrived after the 6 p.m. start and beyond the new signup deadline because her sales job required that she be in the Allentown/Bethlehem area.

Read more: http://timesleader.com/news/local-news-news/1287433/W-B-council-adopts-new-rules-on-public-input

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Census Figures Show Population Drops In NEPA Across The Board

Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metro...

Locator map of the Scranton-Wilkes-Barre Metropolitan Statistical Area in the northeastern part of the of . (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

About 2,000 fewer people lived in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre metro in 2013 compared to the previous year, as deaths outpaced births and more people fled the area than flocked to it.

All seven counties in Northeastern Pennsylvania lost population between July 1, 2012 and July 1, 2013, according to new annual estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau today. Unlike the once-a-decade census, the annual estimates are based on records such as birth and death certificates,tax forms and Medicare enrollment.

Gordon De Jong, Ph.D., a professor emeritus of sociology and demography at Penn State, said the aging population, low birth rate and lack of economic opportunity in Northeastern Pennsylvania continue to cost its residents.

“The fundamental underlying trend is continued, if not accelerated,” De Jong said.

Read more: http://citizensvoice.com/news/census-figures-show-population-drops-in-nepa-across-the-board-1.1657880

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