5 Arrested In Wilkes-Barre Drug Raid

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

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

WILKES-BARRE — Five people were arrested in a drug raid on Charles Street on Friday.

Wilkes-Barre police, with assistance from state police Troop P Vice Unit and Pennsylvania State Parole, initiated an investigation Friday into drug trafficking and prostitution in South Wilkes-Barre, according to a press release from city police.

As a result of the investigation, police obtained a search warrant for 171 Charles St.  While searching the premises, officers arrested Vanessa Gamble, 35, and Herbert Williams, 34, both of 171 Charles St.; Lauren Lizza, 24, of Throop Street, Scranton; Ryan Novick, 26, of Schuyler Avenue, Kingston; and Fabian Thomas, 30, of Hollenback Street, Plains Township.

Read more:  http://www.timesleader.com/news/local-news/673262/5-arrested-in-W-B-drug-raid

Fee For Pennsylvania State Troopers On The Radar

English: Pennsylvania county map

English: Pennsylvania county map (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A crash occurs on Route 183 in Penn Township.  State troopers who usually respond in that area are tied up elsewhere.

What’s a police chief in the small neighboring borough of Bernville going to do?

“As soon as I hear about an incident I’m going to respond,” Chief Brian Thumm said.

He won’t ignore a call nearby just because it’s outside his borough in state police territory.

While that’s the right thing to do, Thumm said, Bernville taxpayers are picking up the cost.

He’d like to see neighboring municipalities join with Bernville in providing local police coverage.  If that’s not an option, he’d at least like to see municipalities that rely only on state police pay for the service.

Read more:  http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=450168

Many Skip School At Brandywine Heights High Over Social Media Rumor

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States Public School Districts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  Given recent events, can you blame parents for keeping their children home!

Despite assurances from the school district there was nothing to be concerned about, 40 percent of Brandywine Heights High School students stayed home Wednesday in light of rumors a student was planning to bring a gun to school.

Dr. Martin D. Handler, superintendent, said rumors began circulating through Facebook, email and other venues over winter break that a student planned to bring a gun to school Wednesday.

District officials alerted state police, who interviewed the student and his mother and determined there was no threat.

Just to be on the safe side, Handler said, state police were on hand at the start of school Wednesday.

Read more:  http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=440746

Damage Set At $3 Million In Blaze At Morgan Corp.

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Fire authorities estimated on Friday that the blaze at Morgan Corp. in Caernarvon Township caused $3 million in damage.

Trooper Michael J. Yeity, a state police fire marshal, said an electrical or mechanical malfunction caused Thursday’s blaze in a company paint shop. The fire was ruled accidental.

Morgan Corp., 111 Morgan Way, manufactures the box, or container section, of delivery trucks for Penske, Ryder and other corporate trucking fleets.

Yeity said employees were in the paint shop and discovered smoke venting from the top of a paint booth about 3:45 p.m.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=412582

Trooper Moochers: Big Towns That Rely On State Police Still Get Off Easy

Don’t shed any tears for the sizable towns in Pennsylvania that are going to lose the revenue from traffic tickets written on their roads by state police. They still get to keep a more lucrative freebie, the use of state troopers instead of locally funded officers to handle all their law enforcement.

It’s nothing short of cop welfare — a local expense covered by state taxpayers for towns that, relatively speaking, aren’t even needy.

The loss of the ticket money is due to the enactment of Senate Bill 237, which will take effect Sept. 3 in municipalities with 3,000 or more people that have no local police force. Among the towns that will be affected are Hempfield (population 42,000), Unity (24,000), Derry Township (15,000) and Mt. Pleasant (11,000) in Westmoreland County; White (16,000) in Indiana County; North Union (12,700) in Fayette County and Somerset Township (12,000) in Somerset County.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/opinion/editorials/trooper-moochers-big-towns-that-rely-on-state-police-still-get-off-easy-645772/#ixzz21Sgah8jz

Pennsylvania State Police Ranks Thinning

If Pennsylvania State Police troopers started disappearing from the roads, would anyone really notice?

Last week, State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan told a joint House-Senate panel that there aren’t enough new cadets in training to fill the vacancies anticipated by veteran troopers retiring.

Noonan said that when the current class of cadets graduates from the State Police Academy in Hershey this summer, the ranks of the troopers will still be down by 10 percent of 4,500 capacity.

Each class of the academy can produce 115 new state troopers.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=377182

What Will It Take To Make Pottstown Safe??

Less than a week after a historic meeting at Invictus Ministries, to address the recent wave of shootings in Pottstown, another shooting occurred Sunday afternoon! 

In broad daylight, a young man was shot after being “dropped off” in Pottstown’s central historic neighborhood.  This youth was evidently from “out of town”.  That raises all kinds of questions and could be another article.

With an admitted “drug war” being waged to control Pottstown, where does this leave us, the residents of Pottstown?  We were told Wednesday, that as citizens, we are not doing enough to aid police.  We need to step it up and report crime when we see it.  Okay, I will admit citizens need to be involved and help the police.  However, this situation seems to be beyond the scope of our own police department so “citizen involvement” at this juncture is fairly dangerous other than anonymous reporting of crime. 

If these “gangs” are willing to shoot someone in broad daylight it tells me they are fairly confident they can get away with it.  They are not afraid of our local law enforcement.  This brazen attitude would suggest we need to enlist additional help.  More preventive measures need to be put in place.  Telling people “if we put more police on the streets we will have to raise your taxes” is not a strategy.  Sorry, that is just lame.  If our taxes can not give us adequate police protection, we need to consider other creative solutions like outsourcing or mergers.  We need to be PROACTIVE, not reactive.

I urge our leadership to think outside the box.  People would be relieved if the State Police or other additional law enforcement professionals were enlisted to supplement our police department until this crisis is over.  What we are doing is not working.  This problem will continue until these criminals get a clear message they are not wanted in Pottstown and their lives will be made a living hell if they come here and ply their trade.  

There is no shame in asking for help!!!  Continuing to blame unarmed and untrained taxpayers is not going to solve this problem!

Other Pottstown blogs have commented on this subject as well:

http://savepottstown.com/2010/11/14-year-old-boy-victim-of-latest-pottstown-shooting/

http://codebluepulse.blogspot.com/2010/11/its-time-to-declare-state-of-emergency.html

http://sanatogapost.com/2010/11/22/reportage-and-commentary-on-sundays-pottstown-shooting/

Fast Eddie News

Three things today:

1.  Rendell is leaving us with one last “gift” when he leaves office.  Pennsylvania  Turnpike tolls will be increasing another 10% effective 1/2/11.  E-Z Pass customers will experience a 3% increase.  It is speculated that this is the first in a series of fare increases.  Thanks Ed!

2.  Rendell now expects state employee layoffs to only be about 200 because everybody, their brother and the horse the rode in on are retiring.  The hiring freeze has also helped.  We should have a more concrete number next week.  Oh joy, oh rapture.  More drain on the pension fund.  That will fix everything.

3.  I heard on the radio yesterday that the Pennsylvania State Police have trooper openings that need filled.  So guess what?  They don’t have the money to train them since Fast Eddie slashed their budget something like $9 million dollars.  So no new troopers.  Ummmm public safety is pretty important Ed.  I think we can do with a few less SEPTA or PAT transit employees before we start cutting the police budget.  Many areas of our state depend on the Pennsylvania State Police as their only means of police protection.  Bad move Ed.