Vandals Strike Gravesite Of Former Pennsylvania Governor

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Crawford County

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

Editor’s note:  Is there something in the water?  People are just going off the rails lately!

Something puzzling has happened in Meadville, a community 90 miles north of Pittsburgh.

The gravesite of former Gov. Raymond Shafer was desecrated last month, its monument defaced, the grave dug down to the vault and messages written in spray paint on the exterior of a nearby church, cursing the late governor in French.

State police in Meadville have no suspects and no leads.  And the family of the late governor, who led Pennsylvania from 1967 to 1971 and who died in 2006, has no idea what prompted the vandalism.

“We do know that it’s probably not somebody who did it on the spur of the moment,” said the late governor’s daughter Diane Shafer Domnick, who lives in Meadville and teaches at the University of Pittsburgh in Titusville.  “People had to be ready to do the damage that they did.”

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Gas Dips Below $3 A Gallon In New Jersey

Census Bureau map of Newark, New Jersey

Census Bureau map of Newark, New Jersey (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Falling gas prices are hitting numbers not seen since the beginning of the year.

How about under $3 a gallon in North Jersey?

A Delta station on Brook Avenue in Passiac Park, north of Newark, is charging just $2.97 a gallon, the lowest in the state, according to – and it’s not some gimmick price.

“It’s very busy,” said a worker who declined to share his name.  “Like Hurricane Sandy all over again.”

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Montco Coroner: Body Found On Pottstown Railroad Tracks Had No Sign Of Injury

POTTSTOWN — The identity of the 48-year-old man found dead Monday morning beneath the South Charlotte Street bridge over the Norfolk Southern Railroad tracks is Ronald Sheerer.

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DA Calls Assault On Elderly Women In Clay Twp. One Of Lancaster County’s Most Heinous’ Crimes

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lancaster County

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

The young man accused of torturing three elderly women Friday in their Clay Township home was apprehended swiftly because of collaborative efforts among local police.

That was the message Monday from Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman, who led a press conference confirming a litany of charges against 22-year-old Dereck Taylor Holt, who is believed to have targeted the women solely because of his as yet unexplained hatred for members of the Mennonite faith.

“This is one of the most serious crimes that we’ve had in Lancaster County history, one of the most heinous crimes that didn’t result in a homicide,” Stedman said.

“I’ve been doing this for 20 years,” he said.

“To say that I’m shocked by this — we’re all shocked by this — is an understatement.”

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Reading City Council Narrowly Approves Mayor’s Four Assistants

On a 4-3 vote Monday, City Council agreed that Mayor Vaughn D. Spencer can keep his three full-time assistants and a part-timer in 2013.

The move came after months of bickering between the mayor and some council members over whether he really needs all the help – a full-timer and a part-timer more than former Mayor Tom McMahon had – when the city cut four full-time and four part-time jobs elsewhere.

The city already adopted a $77 million budget for 2013, but needed to approve the position ordinance so employees can be paid next year.

Two of the cuts are full-timers in the Citizens Service Center, which hopes to need fewer workers when it transfers trash and recycling bills to the Reading Area Water Authority sometime next year.

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Berks Hospitals Get High Ratings

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

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

Medical treatment available at Reading Hospital and St. Joseph Medical Center is as good as or better than any other hospital in Pennsylvania.

But the cost of that treatment is more expensive at Reading Hospital, 16 percent more expensive on average.

The Hospital Performance Report released today by the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council measures the in-hospital death and readmission rate of all hospitals in the state in 2011.  A readmission is defined as being admitted to the hospital within 30 days of being hospitalized for the same condition.

It also measures the average cost for treating some common medical conditions.

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