County Police Seek Wilmerding Bank Robber

December 29, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Allegheny County police are looking for the man who robbed Compass Bank in Wilmerding Thursday afternoon.

A county spokeswoman said the suspect ran into the bank on Westinghouse Avenue at 3:15 p.m., jumped over the teller's counter and tried to take money from a drawer. When he was unable to get that drawer open, he turned to the next teller's window, grabbed approximately $2,600 in cash, jumped back over the counter and ran out of the bank.

Police said he was last seen fleeing on foot up Commerce Street.

The suspect was described as a white male with blue eyes, a medium build, and 5-feet-10-inches tall. He was wearing a dark gray jacket, gray workout pants and brown hilking boots. He wore gloves on his hands and his face was covered with a black or dark blue mask or scarf.

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Traffic Stop Leads to Narcotics Charges for Pittsburgh Man

December 29, 2016 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A Lawrenceville man faces a preliminary hearing Feb. 27 after McKeesport police said they found 451 stamp bags of suspected heroin in his possession during a traffic stop.

Jason R. Galley, 41, also faces unrelated narcotics charges in Wilkins Twp. and the city of Pittsburgh, according to court records. He is being held in the Allegheny County Jail in lieu of bond on the Pittsburgh charges, court officials said.

A stamp bag of heroin typically contains around 1/10th of a gram of heroin.

McKeesport police said officers on patrol just before 11 p.m. Dec. 2 saw a dark-colored SUV driving the wrong way on Sumac Street. They followed the vehicle and stopped it near the intersection of Versailles and Patterson avenues, police said.

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Man Faces Charges in Two November Break-Ins

December 29, 2016 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A Clairton man is being held in the Allegheny County Jail in lieu of bond after McKeesport police charged him with burglarizing two houses in the 2900 block of Versailles Avenue.

David D. Foster, 43, is charged by McKeesport police with burglary, criminal trespass, receiving stolen property, theft by unlawful taking, criminal mischief and possessing instruments of crime. He faces formal arraignment at 9 a.m. Feb. 16 before Allegheny County Judge Jeffrey Manning.

Police said officers responded to a burglary report on Nov. 6 at a house in the 2900 block of Versailles. As they searched the area, they spotted an open window at a neighboring house, and went inside, where they found two stolen TV sets, with remote controls, along with a screwdriver and a pair of gloves.

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'Proud Partner' MYCS Receives Chamber Gift

December 29, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

Mon Yough Area Chamber of Commerce this month made gifts totalling $3,500 to McKeesport-based Mon Yough Community Services.

Maury Burgwin, executive director of the chamber, said that the initiative of MYCS Director of Development Nancy Shelton "made the gifts possible."

Following Shelton's lead, Burgwin said, MYCS employees have volunteered their time throughout the year to work at chamber events, including a benefit auction.

"I can't tell you how proud we've been to partner with MYCS," he said.

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Library Slates Upcoming Programs

December 22, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Carnegie Library of McKeesport has slated programs for January. All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted. For more information about any program, call (412) 672-0625 or visit the library's website.

The library is located at 1507 Library Ave., off of Versailles Avenue.

Sit and Be Fit: "Sit and Be Fit" will meet at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 4 and 18 at the library. The program promotes exercises that can be done in the winter months. The exercises are low impact and gentle, a spokeswoman said.

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State AG: School Bus Firm Had Unlicensed Drivers, Uninspected Vehicles

December 21, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Crime and Police News

The state attorney general today accused a McKeesport school-van operator of using drivers with criminal records and using vehicles that were not properly inspected or insured.

Martin W. Betchy, 35, and his company, Three Rivers Transit LLC, are charged with insurance fraud, theft by deception, criminal attempt to commit theft by deception, criminal use of a communication facility, deceptive or fraudulent business practices, endangering the welfare of children and unlawful use of a computer and other computer crimes.

In one case, the AG's office claims, one of Three Rivers Transit's drivers was taking four students to a school for special-needs children, but had never passed a driver's test or obtained a license.

Another driver worked for Three Rivers Transit for more than a year while her license was suspended for drunken-driving, the attorney general claims, and one of the vans used for school transports didn't have a first-aid kit or other required safety equipment.

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Advertising Rates

December 19, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

In the wake of the closure a year ago of the McKeesport Daily News, we've had several inquiries about advertising at Tube City Almanac and our sister site, McKeesport Obituaries.

We are still finding our way around; Tube City Community Media remains an all-volunteer organization, and we don't have anyone who is actively able to sell advertising. The advertising you do see on the sites is supplied by Google Adsense, and we net $2 or $3 per day from it --- not enough to pay anyone.

But since people are asking, and we do want to provide a service to the community, current rates will be as follows, until further notice:

  • A static photo, image or logo, with up to a 50-word description, will be $25 per week on either site.
  • A 30-second video advertisement, posted on either site for 30 days, will be $150.
  • A 60-second video advertisement, posted on either site for 30 days, will be $250.

I hope that sounds fair. Our traffic has gone up about 300 percent since the loss of the paper. We're not looking to gouge anyone, but we'll never grow if we don't bring in some revenue.

We can do the video in-house, based on your script and photos, unless you have something already.

And we can take a check or money order made out to Tube City Community Media Inc., or a PayPal donation to


Local County Parks Offer Christmas Tree Recycling

December 19, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Photo by Alan Levine, via

Don't trash that Christmas tree after the holidays --- recycle it.

All nine Allegheny County parks, including Round Hill Park in Elizabeth Twp., White Oak Park, South Park and Boyce Park, will accept old Christmas trees for recycling, beginning Dec. 26 and continuing through Jan. 16.

A spokeswoman said the trees --- natural ones only, no artificial trees --- must be free of tinsel, ornaments, lights, stands and all other decorations before they're dropped off.

The trees are mulched and used as part of the landscaping at county parks, she said.

Local drop-off locations include the parking lot by the Poplar 1 Shelter at White Oak Park; the parking lot between Meadow & Alfalfa shelters at Round Hill Park; the parking lot near the wave pool at Boyce Park; and the parking lot at the wave pool at South Park.

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Parking Meter App Coming to City's Downtown

December 19, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

A smartphone parking meter app developed by a Mon Valley-based company is bring its services to McKeesport.

City council this month approved a one-year agreement with Braddock-based Meter Feeder Inc. to provide payment services for McKeesport's parking meters.

Meter Feeder allows municipalities to tie their existing parking meters into a computer database that allows motorists to pay for parking using either coins or their smartphones. The app uses GPS location information to detect where cars are parked. It's already in use in Braddock, Dormont, Greensburg, Homestead, Sewickley and other Western Pennsylvania cities.

The company was co-founded by former McKeesport area resident Dan Lopretto and CMU graduate James Gibbs and has attracted positive stories from national media outlets such as TechCrunch and TechTimes.

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County Identifies Victim of Munhall High-Rise Fire

December 16, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

The Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office has identified the victim of a fire that swept through a Munhall senior citizen high rise on Friday morning.

Richard Miller, 61, was pronounced dead at the scene of the blaze at Parkview Towers on Caroline Drive.

The fire in the seven-story building, owned by a corporation affiliated with the United Methodist Church, was reported just before 5 a.m. and took two hours to bring under control.

More than 20 fire companies from as far away as Westmoreland County were called to the scene, which forced the evacuation of 80 people, some of them with serious disabilities, county officials said.

Seven residents of the building suffered minor injuries and were taken to local hospitals, said Matt Brown, chief of Allegheny County emergency services, and three Munhall police officers had to be treated for smoke inhalation after they helped evacuate the building.

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One Person Dead After Munhall Apartment Building Fire

December 16, 2016 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: News

A resident was found dead, and about 90 people were evacuated, following a fire at a senior-citizen high-rise apartment building in Munhall.

The fire at Parkview Tower on Caroline Street was reported just before 5 a.m., said Allegheny County Emergency Services Chief Matt Brown. Firefighters arrived five minutes after the initial 9-1-1 alarm and discovered the blaze on the seventh floor of the building was spreading to the roof.

A "mass casualty" incident was declared and additional emergency crews were summoned to help evacuate the elderly residents, many of whom have disabilities and use walkers and canes, Brown said.
Seven people were taken to area hospitals and one person was found dead at the scene. Brown said he could not release the person's name or where, exactly, they were found in the building.

The cause of the fire is unknown and remains under investigation, he said.

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Second Kane Resident Tests Positive for Legionnella Bacteria

December 15, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

A second resident of Kane Regional Center in McKeesport has tested positive for the bacteria that causes Legionnaire's disease.

Dennis Biondo, executive director of the county's four* care homes for the elderly and disabled, said the infected resident has lived at Kane McKeesport since July.

"At this point, the source of the infection is unknown, but Kane McKeesport staff are working with the Health Department to actively identify any source and take appropriate remedial action," Biondo said Wednesday.

In November, county officials said that a resident of Kane McKeesport was taken to the hospital Oct. 24 and tested positve for Legionella, a water-borne bacteria that can cause a serious respiratory disease called Legionnaires' Disease.

Legionella bacteria breed in water and air conditioning systems. Most people exposed to the bacteria do not become ill, but people who are elderly or have compromised immune systems are at risk of serious infection.

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Fire at Marina Damages Five Boats

December 12, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

City and Allegheny County police and the Allegheny County Fire Marshal's Office are investigating a blaze early Monday morning that damaged five boats stored near the McKee's Point Marina.

At least three of the boats appear to be total losses, McKeesport fire Chief Jeff Tomovcsik said.

Just after 2:30 a.m., a caller to Allegheny County 9-1-1 reported hearing an "explosion" in the vicinity of Strawberry Alley and Sixth Avenue. The caller looked out the window and saw flames.

McKeesport firefighters responded and found several boats --- large cabin-cruiser type boats --- fully engulfed, Tomovcsik said.

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State OK's $316K Grant for Walnut, 48 Intersection

December 12, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

State officials have approved a $316,000 grant to redesign the intersection of Route 48 and Walnut Street to provide a traffic light and new turning lanes.

The White Oak-based developer of a shopping center called "Walnut Crossing" --- which has been under construction at that intersection for years --- will provide $135,000 in necessary matching funds, McKeesport officials said.

The grant, made through the Commonwealth Financing Authority's Multimodal Transportation Fund, was approved Thursday.

Mayor Michael Cherepko called the partnership a "shining example" of cooperation between the public and private sectors, and praised A.J. Tedesco, the city's community development director, for his work on the project.

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East Winds Band Hosts Free Holiday Concert Sunday

December 09, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

The East Winds Symphonic Band will present "Holiday Sounds," a free concert of Christmas and seasonal music, at 3 p.m. Sunday (Dec. 11) at St. Angela Merici Catholic Church, 1640 Fawcett Ave., White Oak.

The all-volunteer band is directed by Susan Sands, a spokesman said. The concert also will feature the Mon Yough Chorale under the direction of Benjamin Filippone.

Admission is free and a reception with light refreshments will be held immediately following the concert. Visit the website for more information.


City's 2017 Budget Includes Property Tax Increase

December 07, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

McKeesport City Council is preparing to do something it hasn't done in 25 years --- enact a property tax increase.

At a budget hearing Tuesday night, Mayor Mike Cherepko presented the city's proposed 2017 budget, including tax increases of 2 mills each on buildings and land.

That would take the city's property tax on buildings to 6.26 mills and on land to 18.5 mills.

The increase is expected to generate about $689,000 in additional revenue in 2017. "I don't want to do this," Cherepko said. "What politician wants to raise taxes? But the right choice is not always the popular choice."

The tax increase wasn't popular with the handful of residents who attended the hearing. Ken Thornton of Fawcett Plan questioned whether the administration and council have cut expenses as deeply as they could.

Cherepko said that approximately 90 percent of the city's expenses are fixed or subject to labor contracts.

"Then maybe you need to lay some people off," Thornton said. "That's what happens in the real world ... I think maybe some concessions need to be made. You can't have these unions run you out of business."

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Festival of Trees Winners Posted

December 05, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Winners in the 31st annual Festival of Trees, just concluded at Renziehausen Park, have been announced by co-chair Cheryl Myers Cotter.

Handmade Category


  1. #16 Hungarian Embroidery group
  2. #6 The Well Ministries
  3. #79 McK Business & Professional Women


  1. #28 South Allegheny Spanish IV & V Class
  2. #5 Cub Scout Pack 916
  3. #51 Carnegie Library of McKeesport


  1. #83 Romine Group Shelter Home ( Auberle)
  2. #26 Founders' Hall Pre-K Counts
  3. #62 Francis McClure 5th Grade ACE
  • Honorable Mentlon #85 McKeesport Mon Valley Girls Softball Association
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Author, Attorney Lomeo to Discuss Book in Dravosburg Thursday

December 02, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Author and attorney James Lomeo will discuss his book, "From the Ice to the Fire: A Sicilian Immigrant's death struggle with Pittsburgh politics, The Teamsters, and Mafia" at 7:30 p.m. Thursday (Dec. 8) in the social hall of Amity Presbyterian Church, 400 Euclid Ave., Dravosburg. Admission and refreshments are free.

The book details his grandparents' real-life struggle with the Teamsters, organized crime and their business, Roma's Fruit Market in McKeesport. Lomeo will explain why Dravosburg is the only town that would help the family.

Lomeo served as mayor of Monroeville for six years, until 2008, and served for two years as an assistant district attorney and another two years as assistant solicitor, both times for Allegheny County.

You can buy the book here: From the Ice to the Fire: A Sicilian Immigrant's death struggle with Pittsburgh politics, The Teamsters, and Mafia


Festival of Trees Opens; 84 Entries in This Year's Event

December 01, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

The 31st Annual Festival of Trees opened Thursday at the Jacob Woll Pavilion in McKeesport's Renziehausen Park.

Girl Scouts from Troop 58112 in White Oak sang a medley of Christmas carols before joining McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko in a ceremonial tree-lighting at 6:30 p.m. near the Renzie Park Senior Center. Santa Claus then arrived on McKeesport Fire Department's ladder truck.

The festival continues through Monday. Pat Harris of McKeesport, who co-chairs the festival with Cheryl Myers Cotter, said about 1,200 adults attend each year, plus many children, whose attendance isn't closely counted.

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