Clairton Man Pleads Guilty to Child Sex Trafficking Charge

January 07, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A Clairton man pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of sex trafficking of a child, U.S. Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.

Robert Allen Middlebrook, 41, pleaded guilty to one count before U.S. District Judge Arthur J. Schwab in Pittsburgh.

Prosecutors say that in February 2015, Middlebrook "knowingly recruited, enticed, harbored, transported, provided and obtained a female minor" to engage in commercial sex acts. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and Pennsylvania State Police conducted the investigation, a spokeswoman said.

 
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Local Fire Service Vet Tapped for County Post

January 07, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

A local man who currently serves with the Liberty Borough Volunteer Fire Department has been named interim director of Allegheny County Emergency Services.

Matthew J. Brown was promoted today by Allegheny County Manager William D. McKain, a county spokeswoman announced. Brown had been serving as the county's deputy director of operations and training and previously served as director of protection services and manager of corporate fire protection for U.S. Steel.

He holds professional certifications from the International Association of Emergency Managers and the National Fire Protection Association, and in 2014 was named executive director of the Pittsburgh Regional Business Coalition for Homeland Security.

A life member of Munhall Volunteer Fire Company No. 1, Brown is a graduate of Steel Valley High School and has a bachelor's degree from the University of Phoenix and more than 30 years of experience in emergency services, emergency management, and industrial safety and hazardous materials.

 
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Braddock Mayor Calls on Governor to Pardon Councilman-Elect

January 06, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Braddock mayor and Pennsylvania U.S. Senate candidate John Fetterman is the latest person to call on Gov. Tom Wolf to pardon McKeesport business owner Corry Sanders.

Sanders was elected to McKeesport city council in November, but the Allegheny County District Attorney's Office this week warned city officials that Sanders was ineligible to serve because he pleaded guilty in 1993 to two felony drug offenses.

"The voters of McKeesport have democratically chosen (Corry) Sanders to serve as their representative, and we should not let a drug conviction from a quarter-century ago block the will of the people," Fetterman said yesterday. "I call on Governor Wolf to issue a pardon for Mr. Sanders to give the people of McKeesport the democratic representative they voted for."

Fetterman said Sanders' inability to take his council seat --- despite a long track record of clean behavior, which includes service as a church deacon and in numerous responsible positions --- "represents so much about what is wrong with our broken system."

Fetterman is seeking the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate in the May primary.

 
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Police Log: Jan. 5, 2016

January 05, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

  • The arrest records published here were provided by the McKeesport Police Department.
  • A report of an arrest does not mean the person identified has been convicted of a crime.
  • All people arrested are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
 
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Driver Charged With Murder in Connection With Turtle Creek Hit-and-Run

January 04, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A 34-year-old Munhall man has been arrested and charged in connection with the New Year's Day hit-and-run death of a woman in Turtle Creek.

William Lekovitch is awaiting arraignment on charges of homicide by motor vehicle, involuntary manslaughter and numerous other offenses, an Allegheny County police spokesperson said.

County police said that the 60-year-old victim, identified in broadcast reports as a Wilkinsburg woman, was walking in the 200 block of Penn Avenue Extension when she was struck by a vehicle sometime before 6:35 a.m. Friday (Jan. 1).

Turtle Creek police responded and found the victim suffering from multiple injuries and the vehicle that had struck her, abandoned, nearby, and the driver nowhere in the area.

The victim died of her injuries in a hospital on Sunday evening, county police said. Lekovitch surrendered to police without incident. The investigation is ongoing.

 

Judge Expected to Rule on Whether City Councilor Must Be Removed

January 04, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Corry Sanders has led "an exemplary life" since a 1993 felony conviction, an assistant district attorney told McKeesport officials earlier today, but he will be ineligible to serve on city council unless he is pardoned by Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf.

Angry residents on Monday night crowded McKeesport City Council chambers, many of them demanding that Sanders be allowed to take the seat to which he was elected in November.

But city council President Rich J. Dellapenna adjourned council's reorganization meeting, and two additional council meetings scheduled for this week have reportedly been cancelled, as McKeesport officials await the outcome of a likely hearing before an Allegheny County judge.

Sanders, a local businessman, was one of four people elected in 2015 to four vacant seats on city council, along with Tim Brown and incumbent council members Dellapenna and Keith A. Soles. But in January 1993, Sanders pleaded "no contest" to two felony drug charges, and according to Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala Jr., that makes him ineligible to hold elected office in Pennsylvania.

Article II, Section 7 of the Pennsylvania constitition says that "no person hereafter convicted of embezzlement of public moneys, bribery, perjury or other infamous crime" is eligible to hold any "office of trust or profit" in the state.

"It is unfortunate that this situation has arisen, given the fact that Mr. Sanders has put his past indiscretions behind him and, by all accounts, lived an exemplary life since then," assistant Allegheny County district attorney Kevin F. McCarthy wrote Monday in a letter to McKeesport Mayor Mike Cherepko.

Sanders, who has served on unelected boards such as the McKeesport Downtown Business Authority, frequently speaks to school and church groups about how he has turned his life around.

 
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Port Vue: Trash Pickup Moves to Mondays

January 03, 2016 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Port Vue Residents: Beginning tomorrow (Jan. 4) all trash pick up will be on Mondays only for the entire borough, a spokesperson said. Residents with questions should call (412) 664-9323.

 

Local Obituary Website Launches Today

January 01, 2016 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

The closure of the McKeesport Daily News is going to leave a void in our lives in many ways. One concern I’ve already heard expressed is the loss of our local obituary page.

Besides the obvious usefulness of obituaries in letting a community come together to grieve the loss of our friends and loved ones, obituaries also provide a useful service to genealogists and historians.

So, this morning, we launched www.mckeesportobituaries.com -- also available at www.monyoughobituaries.com.

It is a free service that will be available to all licensed funeral directors formerly served by the Daily News.

Although the service is free, we hope that our local funeral professionals will support it with donations and advertising. Obviously, we also hope they will provide their obituaries!

 
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Newspapers' Closure is Sad For Democracy

December 31, 2015 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Commentary-Editorial

The following is a commentary. Commentaries represent the viewpoints of individual authors and are not those of Tube City Community Media Inc. or its directors.

The Daily News asked me for a few words about the paper's closing. Here's what I sent them:

. . .

A wise person once said that news is anything that people in authority don't want printed --- everything else is advertising.

So, it's a very bad day for democracy and for an informed community when any newspaper closes.

Very few cities of the size of McKeesport or Monessen have a daily newspaper any more. In fact --- much, much larger cities like Cleveland and New Orleans now have newspapers that only come out a few days per week.

So, on the one hand, the loss of newspapers such as the Daily News and Valley Independent is something happening all over the country.

But the problem is that when these local newspapers are closing or downsizing, nothing is replacing them.

The reason is that news coverage --- real news coverage, not just re-printing news releases or police reports --- is very, very expensive, and it's hard to make money in publishing on the Internet.

 
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Today's Riddle

December 30, 2015 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Editorial Cartoons

What's red and blue and sad all over? We are. Jason Togyer cartoon © 2015 Tube City Community Media Inc.
 

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