Latrobe man killed in ATV accident

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Derry Township, Pa. – One person is killed after an all-terrain vehicle accident in a wooded area of Derry Township just North of Chestnut Ridge Road at 6:25 pm Sunday night.

Westmoreland County Coroner Ken Bacha reports Michael Winklosky, age 49 of Latrobe died after suffering blunt force trauma of the head, chest and thorax when the Honda All-Terrain Vehicle flipped backwards as Winklosky was climbing a steep hill with a passenger on back.

The ATV landed atop the decedent who was pronounced dead at the scene. An autopsy will not be performed.

 

Man shot at Parnassus apartment building

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer

New Kensington, Pa. – New Kensington Police and Westmoreland County Detectives were on scene of a shooting in the 300 block of Main Street in the Parnassus section of the city.

The incident occurred abut 10:30 am after a suspect male went to a side door of the apartments, knocked on the door and as the door was opened the victim was shot. The victim was flown to UPMC hospital.

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer

County detective Todd Roach was on scene investigating the scene and taking fingerprints from a side door of the apartment. The suspect was wearing tan pants and a dark shirt. New Kensington Police was assisted at the scene by Springdale Township Police Chief Mike Naviglia and K-9.

If you have any information on this incident, please call New Kensington Police @ 724-339-7533 or dial 911.

 

AKVNEWS involved in overnight pursuit/crash in Tarentum

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer 4:43 am

Tarentum, Pa. – A female driver operating a convertible registered in the state of Florida crashes into the AKVNEWS mobile newsroom after a vehicle stop/pursuit and crash that began in Brackenridge overnight.

Tarentum’s Law Enforcement Officer Steve Freiberg said the Florida driver was traveling on Freeport Road thru Brackenridge when a traffic stop was initiated for speeding through the borough. Brackenridge Police Officer Busch attempted to initiate a vehicle stop near Dunkin Donuts on E 10th Ave Tarentum when the actor backed into the police unit and the pursuit began.

Out on routine night roaming, AKVNEWS was traveling up the hill on Ross Street and heard the pursuit in progress over the radio just past Grandview Elementary. As the news truck neared the traffic light on East 10th Avenue, the actor vehicle cut into the Westbound lanes crashing broadside into the news vehicle at a fairly high rate of speed. ( I thought she was going to hit me head on, so I veered left) As the convertible struck the news truck with tires squealing, the actor was temporarily thrown sideways in her vehicle, then backed up and continued to flee police on the wrong side of the highway headed towards the Tarentum Bridge.

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer

In the meantime, multiple police units from Tarentum, Harrison and New Kensington were alerted to the pursuit in progress. Radio chatter indicated the vehicle was headed across the Tarentum bridge towards New Kensington when apparently the subject vehicle slammed the brakes and exited down the ramp towards First Avenue in Tarentum.

Two police units trying to catch up to the vehicle were unaware the actor cut off down the ramp and motored across the bridge in heavy pursuit only to turn around at the top end of the bridge to rejoin the pursuit that was now on First Avenue. It’s believed the actor drove up First Avenue where Officer Freiberg was positioned near Dresher Stadium waiting for the vehicle to enter his zone.

Officer Freiberg said the subject vehicle was traversing streets in Tarentum and Brackenridge near Morgan Street still eluding police when at one point he attempted to block the vehicle, however the actor vehicle continued on and squeezed between his patrol car and a utility pole. Officer Freiberg said he didn’t know if she was going to ram his car or what and said, “is this it, how it’s going to happen when she aimed for his vehicle? During the pursuit, the actor vehicle hit another parked car along the way. Harrison units were staged at the far end of Natrona as the vehicle headed their way. The vehicle rounded the bend on Federal Street and was finally stopped in a parking lot area on North Canal Street.

*****It’s at this point of this news article I’ll switch to first person writing and upon my arrival at the final stop, Law Enforcement Officer Mike Ropelewski wanted to know if I had shot any video of the pursuit along the way….Right Mike! That question drew a few laughs from the officers processing the scene. At this time, I’ll take this opportunity to thank Tarentum Law Enforcement Officers Steve Freiburg, Sgt.Ryan Hanford, Harrison Officers Scott Faulkner, Sgt. Mike Ropelewski, and Brackenridge Officers Bock and Busch, and all of the New Kensington-Arnold-Lower Burrell Police officers for their friendship and support of my continuing efforts with AKVNEWS. Our goal has always been to bring the A-K Valley communities up to the minute, accurate reporting of noteworthy news events. Many thanks to those professionals for bringing the pursuit to a safe ending.

The Alle-Kiski Valley is fortunate to have dedicated Law Enforcement Officers protecting our communities.

The actor was detained and placed in the Brackenridge Police unit for transport to New Kensington Lockup. Actor refused blood draw at Allegheny Valley hospital and it was heard she wanted to talk to an attorney.

AKVNEWS then followed Brackenridge Officer Busch to New Kensington lockup for a photo opportunity. Actor to be transported to the Allegheny County Jail. Injuries: AKVNEWS refused EMS/sore neck.

 

Suspect at large after purse snatching at Lower Burrell’s Community Market

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer 12:43 am

Lower Burrell, Pa. – Police in Lower Burrell and surrounding communities responded to the Community Market at the Hillcrest Shopping center after a reported strong arm robbery just after 5:00 pm Saturday afternoon.

Lower Burrell Sgt. Zach Beam said the incident turned out to be a straight up theft of an elderly woman’s purse inside the Community market. After stealing the purse, the actor fled the market and headed towards a wooded area behind the Around Back Bar and Resturant. Multiple police units set up a perimeter area from 1155 Wildlife Lodge Rd to Sylvan Drive and began searching the wooded area that parallels SR 56.

Sgt. Beam described the actor as a white male, age 20-30, thin build wearing green pants, camo hat and a blue windbreaker. Witnesses said the man took off his shirt and headed for the wooded area. Springdale Township K-9 Police Handler and Chief Mike Naviglia assisted at the scene but the dog lost the track of the suspect. A large drain culvert that crosses SR 56 was also searched with negative results.

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer

Police staged 4 units along 56, while Detective Sergeant Scott Cardenas posted to the East near the Lower Burrell highrise. Lower Burrell Police Chief Tim Weitzel, Sgt. Zach Beam and New Kensington Office Kevin Hess searched areas near the highrise helicopter landing zone. Also assisting at the scene was a State Police unit, Upper Burrell, and Allegheny Township Police departments. Lower Burrell K-9 Dax and handler Steve Cernava were called to the scene on standby.

Sgt. Beam said the search was called off at 7:50 pm and the suspect remains at large. No injuries were reported and the amount of cash stolen is unknown.

 

Vandergrift man flees high speed crash scene; 1 female sent to the hospital

Handcuffed suspect awaits medical evaluation after fleeing crash scene In Allegheny Township

Handcuffed suspect awaits medical evaluation after fleeing crash scene In Allegheny Township


© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer 1:52 am

Allegheny Township, Pa. – Allegheny Township Police and township firefighters were on scene of a single vehicle car crash on SR 56 just about a half mile west of Sevic Landscaping around midnight Friday night.

Shortly after the initial call to the scene, Allegheny Township Police requested 911 dispatch to notify Lower Burrell Police to search for the driver of the vehicle who fled the scene towards Lower Burrell near Greenwood Cemetery. When AKVNEWS arrived on scene, one female back seat passenger was being extricated from the Pontiac Grand Prix GT and loaded onto a stretcher for transport to Allegheny Valley Hospital. The extent of her injuries are unknown.

AKVNEWS spoke to a male passenger from Vandergrift who was riding in the vehicle who said the driver from Vandergrift was going abut 100 miles an hour and clipped a Ford Mustang. The Grand Prix heading Westbound at a high rate of speed left the roadway and traveled parallel to the roadway, mowing down heavily wooded thin trees and brush before coming to a stop hitting an old concrete post.

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer

While rescue crews were extricating the rear seat passenger, police chatter indicated the suspect was in custody and heading back to the scene of the crash. Once back at the scene, the suspect in handcuffs was looked at by EMS and subsequently placed in an Allegheny Township Police car. Allegheny Township Police was assisted by Lower Burrell Police and EMS. Markle and Allegheny Township Fire crews help to extricate the female and maintained traffic control. Lower Kiski EMS transported the injured to AVH. Kochka and Son Towing of Vandergrift removed the vehicle from the side of the roadway.

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer

 

Harrison Police called to ATI gate 7 for disturbance

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer 11:45 pm

Harrison Two, PA. – Update: Harrison Township Police Sgt. Brian Turack said one person was transported by Citizen Hose EMS after he was knocked to the ground and sustained minor leg scrapes/injuries. An update about the scene shows a white line is painted at the entrance of Gate 7 between the inside of the sidewalk and the actual driveway ramp at the gate. The painted line is in place to differentiate the line that steelworkers are not allowed to cross onto ATI property. Steelworkers were advised of the state law concerning obstruction of traffic and police warned the steelworkers that if they had to come back everyone would be cited.

(Original Story) Police in Harrison Township were called to ATI gate number 7 after a disturbance involving a vehicle about 7:30 pm Friday night.

The incident began after a call for police to be dispatched to gate number 7 after a possible vehicle incident involving a white van. Citizens hose EMS was dispatched to the scene however its unclear if anyone was transported from gate number 7 location. Police at the scene advised ATI workers not to obstruct any traffic and to follow Pennsylvania law. Police indicated video surveillance of the incident will be investigated.

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer

 

Pennsylvania Supreme Court releases emails and attachments

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Harrisburg, Pa. – The Following Is A Statement By Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane

“I applaud the Pennsylvania Supreme Court for releasing the emails and attachments first exposed by the Moulton investigation into the Sandusky prosecution on June 23, 2014. It should never have taken so long for the release of all of these emails, although I recognize that my office is, in part, to blame for this delay.

While the Supreme Court’s releases make moot my office’s appeal covering a large part of the Right-To-Know Law (RTKL) requests they do not cover all the attendant materials in the possession of the OAG covered by the RTKL requests. Some of the materials, currently in possession of the OAG, were never submitted to the Supreme Court as part of any proceedings.

I have, therefore, instructed my office to continue its RTKL appeal in Commonwealth Court solely for the purpose of seeking guidance with respect to the release of any materials covered by the outstanding RTKL requests that was not released by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court yesterday. “

 

Pittsburgh-area man made more than $2 million through online criminal enterprise

Anthony J. Cicero

Anthony J. Cicero

HARRISBURG — Criminal charges have been filed against an Allegheny County man accused of running a lucrative criminal enterprise by paying others, including drug addicts, to steal various items from retail stores and later reselling the items on the Internet.

Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane announced the charges against Anthony J. Cicero, 50, are the result of an investigation by the Office of Attorney General’s Organized Crime Section.

Evidence presented to a statewide investigating grand jury showed Cicero through the alleged criminal enterprise made a gross of more than $2 million over the course of several years. The grand jury, which recommended the criminal charges, also heard testimony that Cicero used drug addicts in the initial thefts and fueled their addictions by providing them with money.

“This defendant not only cost retail stores millions in lost inventory, but he also enabled and fed the drug addictions of multiple individuals,” Attorney General Kane said. “This was a case where the defendant exploited others at every turn.”

According to the grand jury presentment, the investigation began after Glenn Justus, a senior corporate investigator with a major bookseller, identified several individuals involved in the theft of merchandise from retail stores in Allegheny County.

Interviews revealed these people, often referred to as “boosters,” were selling stolen merchandise to Cicero, the grand jury presentment states. Subsequent investigation showed Cicero allegedly sold the items online using Amazon.com and eBay.

Investigators also reported that Cicero directed these “boosters” which items they should target. The items included medical books, computer books, graphic novels, hard cover books, new releases and LEGO products.

Stores that were targeted during the alleged criminal enterprise include Rite Aid, CVS, Giant Eagle Market District, Staples and Wal-Mart.

Investigators also made controlled purchases from Cicero in which they went online and purchased items they suspected were stolen from a particular store. In one case, a suspected stolen item arrived in a package that was marked with a return address of Cicero’s residence, the grand jury presentment states.

Investigators also executed a search warrant at Slipped Disc, the Pittsburgh used record store that Cicero owns. There they found approximately 1,500 suspected stolen items with a retail value of more than $44,000. Agents also said they seized merchandise that was specially marked and sold to Cicero during earlier undercover transactions.

Attorney General Kane thanked Justus, the senior corporate investigator, for his assistance with the investigation.

Cicero, 280 Cline St., East Pittsburgh, is charged with two counts of corrupt organizations and one count each of theft by unlawful taking, receiving stolen property, criminal conspiracy and organized retail theft.

His bail was set at $50,000 unsecured at a preliminary arraignment this morning. A preliminary hearing is tentatively scheduled for Sept. 14.

Cicero will be prosecuted by Senior Deputy Attorney General Mark Serge of the Office of Attorney General’s Organized Crime Section.

 

Kraft Heinz Foods Company recalls turkey bacon products due to possible adulteration

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WASHINGTON, August 25, 2015 – Kraft Heinz Foods Company, a Newberry, S.C. establishment, is recalling approximately 2,068,467 pounds of turkey bacon products that may be adulterated because it may spoil before the “Best When Used By” date, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

56 oz. cardboard boxes (containing four plastic wrapped packages) marked Oscar Mayer “Selects Uncured Turkey Bacon” bearing the plant number P-9070, the line number RS19 and Product UPC 0 4470007633 0, and with “Best When Used By” dates of 24 AUG 2015 through 26 OCT 2015.
36 oz. cardboard boxes (containing three plastic wrapped packages) marked Oscar Mayer Turkey Bacon “Smoked Cured Turkey Chopped and Formed” bearing the plant number P-9070, the line number RS19 and Product UPC 0 7187154874 8, and with “Best When Used By” dates of 28 AUG 2015 through 20 OCT 2015.
48 oz. cardboard boxes (containing four plastic wrapped packages) marked Oscar Mayer Turkey Bacon “Smoked Cured Turkey Chopped and Formed” bearing the plant number P-9070, the line number RS19 and Product UPC 0 7187154879 3, and with “Best When Used By” dates of 3 SEPT 2015 through 30 OCT 2015.
The products subject to recall bear the establishment number “P-9070” inside the USDA mark of inspection, as well as the line number “RS19”. These items were shipped nationwide and exported to the Bahamas and St. Martin.

The problem was discovered by the establishment during an investigation into spoilage-related consumer complaints.

FSIS has not received any confirmed reports of adverse reactions related to the consumption of these products. However, the company has received reports of illness related to the consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about an injury or illness should contact a healthcare provider.

FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers. When available, the retail distribution list(s) will be posted on the FSIS website at www.fsis.usda.gov/recalls.

Consumers with questions about the recall can contact the Kraft Heinz Consumer Relations Center at (800) 278-3403. Media with questions about the recall can contact Jody Moore, Head of Communications, at (847) 646-4538.

Consumers with food safety questions can “Ask Karen,” the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at AskKaren.gov or via smartphone at m.askkaren.gov. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from l0 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day. The online Electronic Consumer Complaint Monitoring System can be accessed 24 hours a day at: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/reportproblem.

 

Attorney General Kane cautions Pennsylvanians about variations of IRS scam

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HARRISBURG — Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane today issued a warning to consumers about new variations of a scam in which con artists pose as officials with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as they attempt to defraud taxpayers.

The Office of Attorney General has continued to receive reports from Pennsylvanians concerning this new variety of scam. The office has learned that criminals are using increasingly sophisticated technology to target unsuspecting consumers.

These “imposter” scams come through telephones and emails. Those responsible for the scam allege the person owes money to the IRS. Here are some variations of the scam that consumers should be cautious of:

Calls in which the caller tries to convince people they owe the IRS back taxes and pressures them to buy reloadable pre-paid debit cards to transfer the funds to pay what they owe.
Robocalls with automated messages telling the consumer they owe back taxes that will result in imminent legal action and instructing the consumer to touch a number or call a number to receive directions on how to pay their taxes.
Email messages containing what appear to be legitimate IRS forms, directing consumers to contact the “agency” through a link in the e-mail and provide bank account or credit card information to pay for the back taxes.
These scam artists use software to mask information to show where the emails are coming from (this is called metadata in technological terms). They also use a phone technology known as Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) to thwart Caller ID. Many of the scammers are based outside the country. With VOIP technology, the scammers can fake that their calls are originating locally or from Washington, D.C.

Attorney General Kane warned consumers to be alert for these invasive and troubling calls. She reports that the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) has taken the lead on investigating these predatory IRS impersonation scams. TIGTA advises it has received 10,000 complaints about these scams, with losses to consumers of more than $20 million. The average loss to individual consumers ranges from $2,500 to $5,000.

Attorney General Kane cautions that these con artists may seem legitimate by referencing a consumer’s personal information that is not publicly available. Sometimes this information may have been stolen from companies which suffered data breaches. This information may include:

The last four digits of the victim’s Social Security Number.
Information about the consumer’s family members.
“Spoofing” the IRS’s telephone number on the Caller ID.
Sending bogus emails that appear to be coming from the IRS.
Calling back and impersonating the local police or department of motor vehicles, again “spoofing” the caller ID to appear legitimate.
The caller may capitalize on the false impression caused by these things to pressure consumers to take action. Many victims have reported that these scam callers have been particularly aggressive and persistent, scaring them about imminent arrest or other dire consequences.

Attorney General Kane reminds consumers that they should remain calm and verify their tax status directly with the IRS by calling 1-800-829-1040.

 

Powerhouse team creates a new 3D tattoo service available to breast cancer patients

Dr. James O’Toole and Mrs. Cheri Croney have joined forces in a new venture called FORMA Naturalis

Dr. James O’Toole and Mrs. Cheri Croney have joined forces in a new venture called FORMA Naturalis

© Copyright AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Editor/Staff Photographer

PITTSBURGH, PA — Local business woman Cheri Croney and Dr. James O’Toole of Pittsburgh have created a passionate, professional, powerhouse team poised and ready to help women feel whole again as they complete the last chapter of breast reconstruction journey.

FORMA Naturalis is a new 3D tattoo service now available to breast cancer patients following reconstruction surgery.

This past week, Dr. James O’Toole, a double board certified, nationally recognized plastic surgeon and founder of O’Toole Plastic Surgery, announced that he and Mrs. Cheri Croney have joined forces in a new venture called FORMA Naturalis.

FORMA Naturalis is a service that will provide 3D nipple and areola tattoos to those who have endured breast reconstruction surgery as a result of mastectomy. Mrs. Croney is the wife of the late Kevin Croney, a nationally renowned, award-winning tattoo artist who was tragically killed in March 2015. Prior to his death, Mr. Croney and Dr. O’Toole were in the early stages of establishing a partnership when he died. Their goal was to combine their passion for helping breast cancer patients by utilizing artistry techniques to restore women’s bodies back to what they looked like before cancer, through the addition of 3D nipple and areola tattoos.

“My husband’s passion has given me a purpose,” says Mrs. Croney. “Although he is not here to see this venture become reality, I am determined to keep it going. The women that we help through FORMA Naturalis have the potential to get back something that they have lost through a devastating disease. Our goal with this initiative is to continue on with my husband’s intent; to help these women feel alive again. Feel whole again.”

Luke Romaniw, a professionally trained tattoo artist with expertise in custom ink color blending and shading, will apply the tattoo(s). Dr. O’Toole will join in the initial consultation with both Luke and the patient to determine the appropriate shape, size and placement for the tattoo(s). Mrs. Croney will work closely with each patient as well, providing emotional support as they complete this last step on their road to recovery.

“FORMA Naturalis, in Latin, translates to ‘the natural form’, says Dr. O’Toole. “Recreating a part of the body that looks similar to the original, in as natural a way as possible, is our goal. As a plastic surgeon, I am not only focused on restoring a look that is customized for each individual patient, I am also extremely dedicated to ensuring our patients feel comfortable throughout the entire process. This is especially true when working with breast cancer patients. They have endured quite a lot before we see them in our office. When we’re finished, I want them to feel beautiful inside and out. Similar to my surgical practice, with FORMA Naturalis, our intention is to always provide compassionate care that our patients won’t find anywhere else.”

Although FORMA Naturalis will operate inside O’Toole Plastic Surgery’s office, at 5830 Ellsworth Avenue, Suite 300 Pittsburgh, PA 15232, it is a separate entity, accessible to all breast cancer patients, not only those who have been previously operated on by Dr. O’Toole.

To learn more or to schedule an appointment, please call 412-345-1615.

 

Airplane comes to rest in the Kiskiminetas River

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Terry Rupert/Staff Photographer 2:56 pm

Saltsburg, Pa. – (UPDATE @ 3:42 pm)  AKVNEWS has learned the Saltsburg Fire and Rescue are on scene of the incident at the Kiskiminetas River.  Our sources report two boats have been put into the river and are told the pilot is ok.  

(Original Story)  Police, fire and water rescue teams are on scene of an airplane that has crash landed in the Kiskiminetas River Sunday afternoon.

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© Copyright AKVNEWS/Terry Rupert/Staff Photographer

Unconfirmed reports are the pilot has self-extricated from the wreckage. It’s not known if there were any injuries or passengers in the aircraft. The cause of the crash is not known however initial sources report the plane attempted to land in a field near the river. State Police and the FAA are headed to the scene. AKVNEWS.COM check of the water levels in the Kiskiminetas River indicate approximately 3.9 feet. but could be higher in pocketed areas.

We’ll continue to follow this Breaking story as more details become available.