Pennsylvania’s increase in traffic deaths in 2012 was smaller than the rise nationwide — the first increase in U.S. fatalities since 2005, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported today.
The NHTSA reported a 3.3 percent increase in U.S. traffic fatalities for the year to 33,561 people killed, an increase of 1,082 from 2011.
Seventy-two percent of the increase — 778 of the 1,082 deaths — came in the first quarter of the year, and over half of those deaths were motorcyclists, bicyclists, pedestrians and other people not in vehicles, NHTSA reported. The agency noted that the first quarter of the year was also the warmest on record.
A trucker wanted for robbery in Florida drove more than 3 miles on Interstate 176 this morning with a state trooper clinging to the cab of his truck before crashing and fleeing into the woods, setting off an extensive manhunt. The trooper was not injured.
Police have identified the man as Harold. A. Davis Jr., 56, of Philadelphia. He remains at large, with dozens of police officers from all around Berks County joining in the search.
The incident began about 10 a.m. when Davis drove through a truck inspection detail being done by Caernarvon Police on Interstate 176 just north of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, said Trooper David C. Beohm, state police spokesman. A trooper approached Davis’ car hauler, but as he mounted the truck to speak with the driver Davis began to pull away, starting a slow-speed chase with the trooper still hanging from the side of the cab.
WILKES-BARRE, PA — Management of the Sherman Hills apartment complex has been found “unsatisfactory” by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, according to a news release from the federal housing agency.
A full report of HUD’s inspection of the crime-plagued complex is expected to be released in the near future, HUD’s Senior Management Analyst S. Van Williams said Wednesday.
HUD officials visited the complex on Sept. 16 and Sept. 17 to complete an on-site Management and Occupancy Review after two girls, 5 and 2 years old, suffered gunshot wounds in Building 328 on Aug. 24. No charges have been filed, however, Luzerne County Assistant District Attorney Brian Coleman said during a court proceeding on Sept. 12 that three men were being investigated.
On Monday 27-year-old Shantique Goodson, of 328 Parkview Circle in Sherman Hills and formerly of Rochester, N.Y., was fatally shot while she was sitting in a Jeep Grand Cherokee near Building 328.
KINGSTON, PA — An intensified search in the Kingston area for an alleged heroin dealer ended with the man’s capture Wednesday night.
Arial “Shorty” Alvarez, 28, of North Manhattan Court, was apprehended when he was spotted walking in the area of Pierce Street and Warren Avenue, about two hours after he allegedly sold about 600 heroin packets, authorities said.
Drug agents with Kingston police and Luzerne County Drug Task Force set up to buy heroin from a man known as “Shorty,” later identified as Alvarez just after 8 p.m.
PHOENIXVILLE, PA — Borough council voted 5-2 Tuesday to turn down a request to budget for a 29th officer for the Phoenixville Police Department.
Supporting the addition of a police officer were East Ward council members David Gautreau and council Vice President Michael Speck, who was recently elected mayor. Negative votes came from all other council members at the meeting. Middle Ward council member Jennifer Mayo was absent.
Borough Manager E. Jean Krack said he and Finance Manager Stephen Nease could, if necessary, find room in the budget to add another officer without raising taxes. The proposed budget does include the addition of two persons to the streets department, one to sanitation and one to public works.
“We have looked at our projections, and we believe that, if it was council’s pleasure, that we could work on the revenue side to get some additional dollars,” Krack said.
But among the myriad financial problems the city faces is the fact that a section of the retaining wall supporting the foundation of the city landmark has collapsed, and more of the wall is in danger of crumbling.
If the wall goes, the Pagoda could be next.
“It’s a serious problem because that is the foundation wall and a large piece of it is gone,” Spencer said. “Once you get that kind of erosion going it’s hard to stop.”