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THE TRI-STATE'S CLASSIC ROCK STATION
GO 106 News Archives for 2012-07

Local News


City to Vote on Hotel/Motel Tax

The City of Cumberland will vote tonight on an order that commits three per cent of its share of the hotel/motel tax from the Fairfield Inn and Suites to the Canal Place Preservation and Development Authority in FY 2013, but reduces that contribution to two per cent in the next fiscal year. The Allegany County Commissioners have already voted to phase out financial support for the authority. The county had previously contributed two per cent of the funds.

 

Three Killed in Bedford County Accident

Three people were killed in East St. Clair Township, Bedford County, Sunday evening. The driver of a 1989 Jeep-who has yet to be identified-crossed over a double line on State Route 4009 and hit a 2000 Hyundai Elantra, driven by 84-year old Robert Broad, who along with his passenger, Ronda Reighard of Cambria County, were killed in the crash. The accident remains under investigation.

 

Wisp Talking to Two Potential Buyers

D.C. Development, LLC-owners of the Wisp Ski Resort-say they are in talks with two potential buyers and hope to announce a reorganization plan by early October. The negotiations were discussed last week in U.S. Bankruptcy Court filings in Greenbelt. D.C. Development is facing an August 10th deadline for producing a reorganization plan, but is requesting an extension to October 9th. The document doesn’t identify potential buyers for the Wisp, but the resort owners are working with another party on a reorganization plan that would allow the group to successfully emerge from bankruptcy. The Wisp is Maryland’s only ski resort.

 

Ten-Year Old Suffers Serious Injuries When Hit by Car

A ten year old Oldtown girl was taken to a Morgantown hospital, after suffering serious injuries yesterday. The girl was struck by a vehicle on Route 51, west of Oldtown. She ran into the roadway, when she was hit by a car, driven by 35-year old Melissa Carter of Fort Ashby. Ms. Carter was not at fault, but was cited for driving on a suspended, out-of-state license. The girl suffered a broken leg, and Ms. Carter was taken to the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center with unspecified injuries.

 

Theft at Wendy’s Investigated

The theft of an unspecified amount of cash from Wendy’s Restaurant in LaVale is being investigated by the Maryland State Police. A person or persons forced entry into the restaurant and stole money from the cash register. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Allegany/Mineral County CrimeSolvers hotline at (301)-722-4300.

 

Garrett County Fire Under Investigation

A fire on Bethleham Road in Garrett County is under investigation by the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office. The single family mobile home, owned by Joshua White, was totally destroyed. Losses to the structure and its contents were set at $70,000. The owner was not at home at the time of the 3:10 a.m. fire on Friday. It was discovered by a passerby.

 

Man Arrested in Domestic Assault Incident

Altamont Terrace resident Timothy Spiker was arrested early Sunday morning, following a disturbance. Spiker was upset, because the internet wasn’t working. Police were called back to the residence, after he threatened other people in the residence, grabbed a cat, and threw it out the second story window. He then struggled with his sister, when he threatened the family dog. Spike then allegedly hit his sister in the face. He was charged with numerous counts, including assault, disorderly conduct and animal cruelty. He was ordered held on $7500 bond.

 

Anne Arundel County Man Arrested for Burglary

Anne Arundel County resident James Michael Disque was arrested this past weekend in connection with the burglary of the Centre Street United Methodist Church. He was found running from the scene, but was apprehended after a brief foot chase. Inside the church, Disque allegedly damaged property and stole currency. He was also confronted by a church staff member. Armed with a pair of scissors, Disque demanded surveillance tapes form the church, but was told the police had already been called. He then fled the scene. He faces numerous charges, and was also found to have active arrest warrants from Anne Arundel County.

 

Three Drown in Two Separate Incidents

Three men drowned in two separate incidents at Raystown Lake in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania. Fifty-seven year old Jerry Broman and 71-year old Larry Newman drowned when they decided to get out of their boat and into the water. In another incident, 71-year old Igor Khodavsky of the Ukraine, drowned after trying to swim between two points in the lake.

 

Derecho Will Likely Mean Rate Increases

The June 29th “super derecho” will probably mean a rate increase for Appalachian Power customers in West Virginia. Storm repairs have been estimated at $94 million, with about $56 million of that coming from damage in the Mountain State alone. There are enough funds built into the rates to cover normal outages, but not enough to cover expenses related to a storm that affected more than half of their customers. Additional costs will most likely be included in the next base rate filing with the Public Service Commission.

Local News


Man Arrested in Rape Incident

Baltimore resident Andrew Dash was charged with rape yesterday, after allegedly holding three local women against their will and firing a gun inside a residence in Frostburg. The incident involved Dash, along with three females aged 17, and 21. Dash allegedly held one of the women at gunpoint, and fired the gun inside an Ormand Street residence. He is being held without bond, pending his next court appearance.

 

Somerset Man Killed in Accident

Somerset resident William Mayhew was killed Saturday afternoon on Route 160, near its intersection with Somerset Road. Mayhew was killed when he was rear-ended by another vehicle, driven by Hyndman resident Brian Lowery. A passenger in the Mayhew vehicle, Cruz Mayhew, suffered major injuries. Lowery was cited for following too closely.

 

Company Ordered to Pay Back Taxes

Panhandle Real Estate Trust, LLC of Cumberland is being ordered to pay nearly $90,000 in back taxes, after Berkeley County officials discovered the company had been mistakenly exempt from having to pay them since 2007. S. Schwab Company’s building in Berkeley County was approved in May of 1999. Officials there had assumed a payment-in-lieu-of-taxes agreement had become null and void in September of 2005, when the title of the building was transferred to the company, from the West Virginia Economic Development Authority. Polo Ralph Lauren Corporation ended distribution operations at the facility within months of announcing in November of 2009, that it was moving them to North Carolina.

 

Keyser Considering Cameras at City Parks

The city of Keyser, which has had a continuing vandalism problem, is considering the installation of video cameras to monitor them around-the-clock. The council, according to the Mineral News-Tribune, is formally endorsing an “Adopt-A-Park” program for Laffey Park, but deferred action for South End Park. The next Keyser Council meeting is set for 6 p.m. on Monday, August 6th.

 

Mineral County Fair Underway

The Mineral County Fair is underway this week, featuring its own version of “The Voice” as locals will showcase their singing abilities in a first-ever talent competition. The 63rd annual fair opens with the queen pageant today at 7 p.m., and there will be a grand feature parade at 4 p.m. on Dan’s Run Road. Tickets are available from any member of the Fort Ashby Volunteer Fire Company and at the grand drawing booth.

 

Somerset Inmate Arrested in Homicide

An inmate at the State Correctional Institution-Laurel Highlands has been charged with killing another inmate in a fight. Forty-three year old Mark Edward Farabaugh now faces charges of criminal homicide, aggravated assault and other counts. A fight, occurring on March 24th, happened between Farabaugh and Keith Williams. The two had been arguing over food, and Farabaugh struck Williams about 12 times. A preliminary hearing has been set for tomorrow at 10 a.m. in Somerset County.

 

Claysburg Woman Charged with Abuse

Thirty-nine year old Claysburg resident Tabatha Partsch, also known as Tabatha Sossong, faces numerous counts, in connection with the alleged molestation, sexual assault and rape. She is accused of raping and assaulting a series of preteens and young teenagers, even allegedly forcing one to sexually assault a five-year-old girl while she watched. She faces 18 felony charges for alleged actions over the last year, including recording her alleged crimes with a cellphone and repeatedly exposing children to online pornography.

 

O’Malley Calls Special Session

Governor Martin O’Malley is calling state lawmakers back to Annapolis on August 9th, to deal with the issue of expanded gambling in the state. Lawmakers will consider a bill to add table games, and a sixth casino in Prince George’s County, mostly likely at the National Harbor Resort. Senate President Mike Miller says the session will take two or three days. Both he and House Speaker Michael Busch say the bill will protect casino revenues for existing casinos, including the Rocky Gap facility. The formal bill, detailing the proposal, will possibly be unveiled this week.

 

 

Local News


Additional Charges May Be Filed in Shooting

A homicide charge may be added to the counts against a 15-year old Everett boy, in connection with the fatal shooting of Neal Hammond in Bedford County. Cole McConoghey has been charged as an adult with aggravated assault, and District Attorney Bill Higgins says the charge will be upgraded, either a third-degree murder charge or a manslaughter count. The investigation is ongoing. McConoghey’s preliminary hearing was continued Wednesday as his defense attorney filed a request to move the case to juvenile court. Charges may also be filed against others connected with the case.

 

New Routes Adopted by County

The Allegany County Commissioners adopted a new set of bus routes and other changes to the county’s transit system at yesterday’s meeting. Adjustments were made to the original proposals, and decided to increase Alltrans fares to $3, rather than to $4, as originally proposed. The increase will go into effect on January 1st.

 

ARC Awards Funding for Westernport Water System

The Appalachian Regional Commission has awarded a $200,000 grant to the town of Westernport for its Water Distribution System Improvement Project. The grant is expected to improve the quality and reliability of water service to 195 homes and 15 businesses, including the downtown area. The current system is more than 100 years old, and has experienced serious leaks and water loss in recent years. The award was jointly announced by Maryland State Senators Ben Cardin and Barbara Mikulski.

 

Man Arrested in Walnut Street Disturbance

Thirty-two year old Cumberland resident Donald Byers was arrested on Wednesday, following a disturbance at a residence on Walnut Street. Byers was observed acting unruly and yelling obscenities in the roadway. He failed to comply with demands by police to stop being disruptive. He was charged with disorderly conduct and failure to obey a lawful order. Following a hearing in District Court, he was released on personal recognizance.

 

Crash Injures Four

A two-vehicle crash sent four people to the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center on Wednesday. A 2012 Ford Explorer was traveling southbound on Route 220, when it crossed the center line and struck a 2012 Dodge Journey, traveling northbound. Two of the victims had serious injuries, and two had moderate injuries. The identities of the victims are not known.

 

Woman Falls Off Somerset County Cliff

A hiker, who had been with a group in the Beam Rocks area of Somerset County, fell off a cliff shortly before 1:30 a.m. Wednesday. She fell about 15 feet into a crevice. She was rescued and flown to Conemaugh Hospital. There was no word on her condition and the Pennsylvania State Police are still investigating.

 

Street Repairs Slated

The City of Cumberland Street Department will perform a street repair to the alley in the rear of the 100-block of South Street. The alley is located between South Street and South Penn Elementary School, and runs from First Street to Second Street. The work will begin on Monday, weather permitting. The alley will be closed to traffic for about three weeks. The road repair and fence replacement will be in coordination with the Allegany County Board of Education. South Penn Elementary School has offered the affected residents the use of their parking lot while the project is underway.

 

Recycling Site Closing

The Allegany County recycling site at the White Oaks Shopping Plaza will be permanently closing as of Thursday, August 23rd. The White Oaks site has experienced multiple problems, including the mixing of different recyclable materials. Also, non-recyclable materials were being dropped off, and the volume and drop off frequency were increasing. Overall, there is contamination and the associated expenditures of hauling the contents to, and depositing them, in the landfill. The closest recycling sites to White Oaks include Allegany College of Maryland, Martin’s Market and Penn-Mar Recycling on Riverside Avenue, one block behind the Allegany County Office Building.

 

O’Malley May Hold Special Session

House Speaker Michael Busch says he believes Governor Martin O’Malley has decided to move forward with plans to hold a special session next month on expanding gambling in the state. The session would expand to table games like blackjack, and to approve a casino in Prince George’s County. Busch says he believes the Governor has enough votes to pass legislation.

 

University of Maryland Returns to Cumberland Airwaves

It has been announced that the University of Maryland has entered into an agreement to return Maryland sports broadcasts to the airwaves of the longtime home of the Terrapins, AM 1450 - WTBO.   Broadcasts will begin this football season. Games will also be broadcast to the Frostburg area on AM 560.  University of Maryland sports were broadcast on WTBO for over 4 decades, prior to 2010.

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Local News


Frostburg Man Sentenced to 25 Years

Frostburg resident Zachary Lee Winner was sentenced to 25 years in prison for his involvement in the assault of an 89-year old woman on January 21st of this year, and the burglary of a Washington Street home in Frostburg on January 10th. Twenty years were given for the assault with an additional 5 years for the burglary. The sentence was handed down in Allegany County Circuit Court yesterday by Judge Gary Leasure. Mr. Winner was represented by Michael Stankan of the Public Defender’s Office. Allegany County State’s Attorney Michael Twigg credited Detective Vincent Benson from the Allegany County Sheriff’s Office and Detective Nicoholas Costello of the Frostburg Police Department, along with the Frostburg Police Department, in both the response to the assault and the prosecution of Mr. Winner.

 

Man Charged in Gun Incident

Burlington resident Chad Litten has been charged in connection with a handgun incident on Brentwood Farms Road near Burlington. A boy and his mother had been in a verbal and physical altercation with Litten, when he allegedly fired several shots from a handgun, and fled the area. He was taken into custody and charged with wanton endangerment and taken to the Mineral County Detention Center. Bond was set at $10,000. There were no injuries in the altercation.

 

Strong Armed Robbery Reported

Forty-nine year old Hallie Holder is being held without bail, after being accused of a strong-armed robbery in the area of Henderson Avenue and Knox Street Tuesday evening. The victim told police that a person approached her and asked her for money. When she said she didn’t have any money, the suspect grabbed her and threw her to the ground. The victim sustained injuries, which did not require medical attention. Holder was taken to the Allegany County Detention Center, pending his next court appearance.

 

Keyser Council to Receive Public Input

The Keyser Mayor and Council have revamped the format of their meetings, and will be taking public input as the meeting begins, rather than at the end. This week’s meeting included a relatively routine agenda, including a budget revision, approval of contractor payments and consideration of bids for paving the city’s streets.

 

Berkeley County Woman Charged with Homicide

Berkeley County resident Sharon Flanagan has been charged with homicide, in connection with the drowning death of her two-year old son in a Pittsburgh hotel room. She has been in custody since July 2nd, a day after her son was found unconscious in a hotel bathtub. He died four days later. She gave several inconsistent accounts of what actually happened, and authorities in West Virginia say she threatened to kill herself and the child in the past. Her attorney says Steven Flanagan’s death was a tragic accident and that his client did not harm her son.

 

Man Waives Right To Preliminary Hearing

Berlin resident Joshua Dean Foy, who faces numerous robbery and theft counts, has waived his right to a preliminary hearing. Foy was also denied a reduction in his $50,000 bond. Foy is accused of trying to take a deposit from a woman who was taking it to First National Bank in Berlin. The woman is still recovering from her injuries. The $50,000 bond is also contingent on Foy staying away from the bank and the victim.

 

ACM Decides on Renovations

Allegany College of Maryland’s Somerset campus will undergo a renovation on its existing building, rather than building an addition. The state of Pennsylvania awarded the college foundation $1.5 million in 2010 to build an addition to house a teleconference center and classrooms; it was later learned the grant could be used for renovations to the existing facility. If the foundation decided on new construction, it would have cost $4 million, which the foundation would have raised. The renovations will cost about $2.5 million, of which about $1 million will have to be raised, to be added to the state grant.

 

Democrats File Redistricting Complaint

The Maryland Democratic Party has filed a complaint against the Maryland State Board of Elections, regarding the validation process of signatures on a petition drive against the state’s congressional redistricting map. David Sloan, executive director of the party, says the board failed to apply standards for reviewing and validating the signatures. The challenge will have to resolved by August 20th, because ballot language for the November election will have to be certified by August 20th

 

Ripken’s Mom Safe After Abduction Incident

The mother of Oriole great Cal Ripken, Jr., was found safe, after being abducted from her home outside of Baltimore on Tuesday evening. She was found with her hands bound in the back seat of her car yesterday morning. Investigators don’t know the kidnapper’s motive, and there was no ransom deman for Vi Ripken’s release. The investigation, in its preliminary stages, hasn’t revealed whether the kidnappers knew who Mrs. Ripken was, nor whether the assailants had any ties to the Ripken family.

Local News


Lightning Strike Kills Pregnant Woman

A Summit Township woman, who was nine months pregnant, was killed yesterday by a lightning strike in the 2600 block of Rockdale Road. Thirty-six year old Mary Yoder and her unborn child were pronounced dead shortly after the 11 a.m. incident. The woman, her husband and their two children were in the woods near their home, picking blackberries, when the storm hit. She took shelter under a tree, and a few minutes later, she was struck by lightning. Somerset County Coroner Wallace Miller was called to the scene.

 

Keyser Man To Be Sentenced on Drug Charge

Keyser resident Malkum Muhammed Jennings faces a maximum sentence of 20 years imprisonment and a fine of a million dollars, following a guilty plea in U.S. District Court in Martinsburg. Jennings entered a plea of guilty to a federal charge of distribution of crack cocaine on July 18th. He is currently free on bond. The case was prosecuted by a number of agencies, including the Eastern Panhandle Drug and Violent Crime Task Force and the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Department.

 

Several More Indictments Handed Down

Several more indictments were handed down earlier this week, by an Allegany County Grand Jury. Anthony Portland was indicted on embezzlement and theft charges related to his employment. Both Michael Hapbell and Danielle Bonner were indicted together on various burglary and theft related charges, in connection with burglaries in Frostburg. Michael Beem faces burglary charges, related to an unoccupied home. And, Andrew Brehm was indicted on forgery and theft charges, related to his employment at the Frostburg Moose Lodge. All were given trial dates in Allegany County Circuit Court in the near future.

 

Taxi Driver Robbed in Grantsville

The McHenry Barrack of the Maryland State Police is investigating the armed robbery of a taxi driver on Route 495, south of Grantsville yesterday afternoon. The Maryland State Police Medevac helicopter was dispatched to the scene, along with police K-9 units. The suspect is described as a black male, wearing a dark shirt and jeans. No injuries were reported in the incident.

 

Man Issued Citation for Possession of Paraphernalia

Fifty-year old Cumberland resident Michael French was issued a criminal citation for possession of drug paraphernalia and released, following a stop in the area of Grand Avenue and Industrial Boulevard early Monday evening. A K-9 scan of the vehicle yielded a positive alert, and a glass pipe-commonly used to smoke a controlled dangerous substance-was found in the vehicle.

 

Agencies Receive Grants for Body Armor

Among the agencies sharing in a grant from the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention was the Allegany County Sheriff’s Office. The local agencies received $2200 for the purchase of body armor. Washington County received $7500 and Frederick County, $6300. Twenty departments in 14 counties received a total of $50,000. In 2010, 120 police officers were killed in the line of duty, with 59 having been shot during violent encounters.

 

One Maryland Broadband Coming to Allegany County

The Allegany County Chamber of Commerce hosted a presentation on bringing improved internet service to the area. One Maryland Broadband is designed to bring faster internet to county businesses, especially downtown Cumberland, in the hopes of leading to growth and attracting new employers. The service will also provide school students with access to video streaming and distance learning. The project, which is expected to cost more than $100 million, is expected to be ready by August of next year.

 

Former Keyser Chief Passes Away

Former Keyser City Police Chief Kipp Ellifritz passed away this past weekend, as the result of an accident on his farm. He served the city of Keyser as a police officer for 36 years. He is survived by his wife, children, two sisters and grandchildren. Friends may call at the Smith Funeral Home, Keyser Chapel today from 7 to 9 p.m. and tomorrow from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Services will be conducted at the Mt. Zion Church on Friday at 11 a.m. with Pastor Jerry Eisenhour officiating.

 

Four Regional West Virginia Counties in Federal Disaster Declaration

Grant, Hardy, Pendleton and Tucker counties have been included in a federal disaster declaration as a result of severe storms on June 29th. The declaration orders federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts. Federal funding is available to state and eligible local governments, along with certain private, nonprofit organizations for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by the storm. Additional designations may be made later, if requested by the state and if further damage assessments warrant the extra aid.

 

Bartlett Won’t Attend GOP Convention

Maryland’s Sixth District Congressman Roscoe Bartlett won’t be attending the Republican National Convention this year in Tampa. Congressman Bartlett will spend that time campaigning for re-election. Several candidates in other states have opted out of the convention, but Bartlett is the first Marylander to announce he will not attend the high-profile event. The Congressman’s opponent, John Delaney, has been asked to deliver a keynote speech at a luncheon during the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Local News


Man Charged with Soliciting Minors

Keyser resident Robert Arbaugh, who is on the sex offender registry, has now been charged with allegedly soliciting a local juvenile on Facebook. Not only has he been charged with solicitation, he faces an additional count of failure to register a change in information on the West Virginia Sex offender registry. He had requested to become friends with the juvenile on Facebook, and eventually asked to meet her in a secluded location. The information was turned over to authorities; Arbaugh was arrested when he showed up at the pre-determined location. He is currently in the Potomac Highlands Regional Jail on $7500 bond.

 

McCoole Fire Department Shuts Its Doors

The McCoole Volunteer Fire Department has closed its doors, but fire and emergency response calls are being handled by other first-responders in that area. The department will hold a special meeting to dissolve the department or close its doors. The company had faced possible foreclosure, as the department fell behind in paying its note with Marquette Bank in Cook County Illinois.

 

Indictments Handed Down by Grand Jury

An Allegany County Grand Jury recently handed down seven indictments, including counts against Jocelyn Gordon of Hyndman, Pennsylvania. She is accused of automobile manslaughter and driving while intoxicated charges, that resulted in the death of Melanie Epperly on National Highway April 1st. Other indictments handed down include on against Kimberli Shewbridge, who was charged with a theft scheme greater than $100,000 and theft charges related to her employment at a local medical office.

 

Kirk Set to Retire At ACM

National Junior College Athletic Association Hall of Fame Coach Bob Kirk announced his retirement as Allegany College of Maryland athletic director yesterday. He had stepped down from coaching about eight years ago, when assistant Mike Baker was named his replacement. Allegany College of Maryland baseball coach Steve Bazarnic will act as athletic director on an interim basis. Under his tenure, Coach Kirk amassed over 900 wins, including a 129 straight home court wins with the Trojans.

 

Two Arrested Following Disturbance

Lonaconing residents Jason Jeffries and Brandi Buskirk, both 24, were arrested following a weekend incident in the area of the railroad tracks near East Florida Way. Both were causing a disturbance, and troopers located drug paraphernalia on both. Jeffries was found to be in possession of a knife, with an eight-inch blade. Jeffries was charged with wearing and carrying a concealed deadly weapon, disturbing the peace and three counts of possession of CDS paraphernalia. Ms.Buskirk was charged with disturbing the peace, possession of CDS paraphernalia, and possession of marijuana.

 

Victim, Suspect Identified in Shooting

Fifteen-year old Neal Hammond has been identified as the victim in last Thursday’s fatal shooting in Bedford County. The suspect in the shooting-who is being charged as an adult-has been identified as Cole McConoughey. They, along with a third teen, had been playing “Russian Roulette,” when McConoughey placed the gun to Hammond’s head, and pulled the trigger. McConoughey has been released from jail, after his family posted $100,000 bail. Additional charges could be filed; a preliminary hearing has been set for Wednesday.

 

PBS Coals Lays off 225 Workers

PBS Coals in Somerset County has laid off 225 workers and idled five mine sites; the company operates 10 mines and two cleaning facilities. Company officials stressed the move was not a local issue, rather attributing the layoffs to the weak economy, escalating costs and decreased demands. The company still has closed to 800 employees and doesn’t anticipate any future layoffs. The layoffs are permanent for now, but officials will let workers reapply when the coal market rebounds.

 

Man Held on $10,000 Bond Following Breaking and Entering

Cumberland resident Eric Taylor is being held on $10,000 bond, following a breaking and entering complaint filed on Sunday. Taylor is accused of trying to gain entry into a residence on Maryland Avenue. He was found outside of the home and placed under arrest. He was charged with fourth-degree burglary, destruction of property, and disorderly conduct.

 

DNR Adjusts Black Bear Numbers

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources is revamping its hunting rules for black bear, because the population has more than doubled since 2005. At least 782 bears live in Allegany and Garrett counties, up from 362 that were counted in a 2005 study. This year, hunters will be allowed to kill 80 top 110 bears during this years’ hunting season. The number of permits will increase from 260 to 340. Up to three hunters can hunt on one permit, which are awarded via a lottery system.

 

Washington Middle School Orientation Set

Washington Middle School will host an orientation for all incoming sixth graders on Wednesday and Thursday, August 15th and 16th. The orientation will be held from 9:30 to 11 a.m. both days. Students whose last name begins with the letters “A” through “M” are encouraged to attend orientation on Wednesdays, while those whose last names begin with “N” through “Z” are encouraged to attend on Thursday. Students will receive their 2012-2013 schedules and locks for lockers as well as have the opportunity to walk through the building.

 

Maryland Insurance Administration to Visit Garrett County

The Maryland Insurance Administration will be in Oakland on Wednesday, August 1st, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Representatives will be at the Frederick A. Thayer III Courthouse on Fourth Street. A variety of consumer materials on all types of insurance products, from annuities to title insurance and health, auto, and homeowners’ insurance is being offered. Outreach activities and consumer materials are available on the website, www.mdinsurance.state.md.us. For information, call (410)-468-2360.

 

Decision on Special Session Expected

A decision on whether to hold a special General Assembly session on gambling in Maryland should come this week. Governor Martin O’Malley, who presented an expanded gambling proposal last Friday, now says he hopes to have a draft of the bill by this Friday. Adding a sixth casino in Prince George’s County, some feel, would oversaturate the market. If a special session is held, legislators would also consider adding table games.

 

Local News


Unemployment Rate Rises in Maryland

The state of Maryland lost 11,000 jobs in June, causing the unemployment rate to rise from 6.7 per cent to 6.9. Maryland employers cut 2900 jobs, as opposed to 7500 that were lost in May. Maryland’s job loss for last month, however, is the third biggest in the country. Nationwide, the employment rate was set at 8.2 per cent.

 

Bedford County Boy Pronounced Dead

A 15-year old Everett boy died Friday morning, after being shot the night before by another 15-year old boy. The two were friends and the incident is being considered the result of irresponsible handling of a firearm, although the juvenile was charged in adult court. The incident happened around 11:30 p.m. in a residence on Riverview Road in West Providence Township. The boy, who was arrested, was released after posting $100,000 bail. A preliminary hearing is set for Wednesday.

 

Three Drug Arrests Made

Somerset County resident Jamie Hope Porcher was arrested in Johnstown this week, accused of being the organizer of a failed Roaring Spring heroin transfer. A sweep has yielded several drug trafficking arrests. Porcher allegedly provided 24-year old Nichole Rankin and 29-year old Peter Donato of Somerset County with 6,000 bags of heroin, to exhcnage for $16,000 cash with Roaring Spring resident Joseph Castro. A search of Castro’s home revealed about $180,000 worth of heroin, as well as a pair of sawed-off shotguns. Porcher’s bail at the Blair County prison was set at $100,000 cash. Police say they expect more arrests in the case.

 

Former Employee Charged With Vandalism

A former employee of Pristine Auto Sales in Keyser has been charged with the vandalism of one of the cars in its inventory. Jason O’Brien Baker has been charged with two counts of destruction or property in connection with the incident. Baker is accused of attempting to throw a brick through the front of a Honda sedan; when he was unsuccessful, he threw it threw the back, and shattered the windshield. He is also accused of throwing a brick through a large picture window of the business. Baker has been released on $2,000 bond, and will be back in court next Wednesday, to enter a plea.

 

Man Arrested on Breaking and Entering Charge

Twenty-eight year old Jason Lynn Winfield is being held on $45,000 bond, after being charged with breaking and entering and theft. Along with the burglary counts, Winfield was charged with two counts of CDS possession, not marijuana.

 

Two Arrested for Trespassing on CSX Property

Cumberland City Police and CSX are reminding residents that walking across railroad tracks, with the exception of crossings, is prohibited. Two Cumberland men were arrested late Thursday afternoon, as they were walking across the tracks in the area of Knox Street and Henderson Avenue. Both Rajon Al Tolib Byrd and Zakary Ryan Harding were issued criminal citations and released, pending trial dates in District Court.

 

Woman Charged In Alleged Assault Incident

Fifty-one year old Annette Washington of Cumberland has been charged with assault, following an incident Saturday evening on Maryland Avenue. Ms. Washington is accused of assaulting a female victim, causing a laceration to the head. She was held on $5,000 bond at the Allegany County Detention Center. The victim was treated at the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center.

 

Frostburg Teen Named Distinguished Young Woman of Maryland

 

Aleksandra Knepper of Frostburg has been named the Distinguished Young Woman of Maryland, and awarded $1900 in cash scholarships during a statewide scholarship program for high school girls held at Carroll  Community College in Westminster. She was one of 15 high school senior girls from the state who competed to represent Maryland as the Distinguished Young Woman for 2013. She will represent the state at various public events and serve as a role model to young people by spreading the program’s national outreach message of “Be Your Best Self.” National Finals will be held next June in Mobile, Alabama, with Aleksandra competing to become the Distinguished Young Woman of America for 2013.

 

Ford Recalls Escapes For Fuel Line Problems

The Ford Motor Company is recalling 11,500 Escape SUV’s, due to a fuel line problem. The issue is very serious, in that Ford is telling drivers to stop driving them. The fuel lines could possibly crack, leak and spill gasoline, which could cause the engine to catch fire. The recall affects models with the 1.6 liter, four-cylinder engine, built from early April, through July 11th.

 

Agencies Reaffirm Maryland Rating

All three bond rating agencies have affirmed Maryland’s Triple-A bond rating, in anticipation of the retail sale of general obligation bonds on August 1st. The offering will include the direct retail sale of about $75 million worth of bonds, with first priority going to residents. The sale will include about $430 million of tax-exempt bonds and $20 million of taxable bonds.

 

Governor Makes Judicial Appointments

Governor Martin O’Malley has made several appointments, including Judge Dana Moylan Wright, who has been appointed to the Washington County Circuit Court. She had been serving on the District Court since 2009. Other appointments were made to Wicomico and Montgomery County District Courts.

Local News


American Woodmark Adding Jobs

American Woodmark is expanding at its Moorefield plant, planning to invest over $15 million in its manufacturing operation at the Robert C. Byrd Hardy County Industrial Park. The expansion means an additional 187 jobs, and hiring for those positions will begin immediately. Once that is complete, American Woodmark will have about 500 employees between that facility, and the one located on Route 220 in Allegany County. In April of this year, the company, located in the Moorefield Industrial Park closed, eliminating 400 hourly and 26 salaried positions.

 

PSC Recommends Dismissal of Complaint

A West Virginia Public Service Commission staff attorney has suggested that the commission dismiss noise and light flicker complaints, in connection to the wind turbines at Pinnacle Wind Farm at New Page on Green Mountain, because it believes it does not have jurisdiction in the matter. Pinnacle agrees with staff attorney John Auville, with another complaint dismissed last month for the same reason.

 

Man Held on Quarter-Million Dollar Bond

Cumberland resident Clint Kane Hill is being held on $250,000 bond at the Allegany County Detention Center, following an assault incident on Frank’s Lane Wednesday. Hill, who resides on Frank’s Lane with his son and his mother, allegedly threw a rod from a blind at the victim-his three year old son-striking him in the face. The injuries were consistent with the account given, and Hill was arrested. He was charged with second-degree assault.

 

Chief Hinant Named to Post

Cumberland City Police Chief Charles Hinant has been appointed vice-chair of the Maryland Police Training Commission. The commission has authority to set standards for the initial selection and training of all governmental law enforcement, correctional, parole and probatioin and juvenile justice officers in the state. Hinant was appointed chief of the Cumberland Police Department in November of 2006.

 

Lee Street To Be Paved Today

The city of Cumberland is notifying the public that Lee Street is being paved today. Lee Street, will be reduced to one-lane traffic, with a flagging operation in place until about 5 p.m. Magruder Street, from Wallace to Lee, will be closed today. Parking will be restricted in areas as posted. Cumberland’s Engineering Department is asking residents and motorists to use caution and obey all traffic control devices and flaggers in the area, and to expect delays during this period of time.

 

School System Partners With ACM

The Allegany County Public School System has partnered with Allegany College of Maryland through the College Preparation Intervention Grant program, to provide academic preparation and support to help students be successful in post-secondary education. In order to qualify for the program and begin regular credited course study at ACM, students must score at the Math 102 Level or the English 101 level on the Accuplacer test. Counselors are meeting with students at the various high schools both this month and next.

 

Piedmont Pool Issue Addressed

The Piedmont pool is open again, after being shut down by the Mineral County Health Department. A series of circumstances, including the June 29th storm, and the illness of the town employee who oversees the water quality there, caused the water in the pool to test negatively for chlorine. Keyser Water Distribution Supervisor Sonny Gank has offered to help in future emergencies, and the pool will be open its regular hours, and at 6 p.m. tomorrow for the Homefest Pool party, sponsored by the Piedmont Concerned Citizens.

 

Keyser Sewer Plant Being Repaired

Another casualty of the strong June 29th storm was the roof of building housing electrical equipment at the Keyser Wastewater Treatment Plant. The metal roof was torn off the brick building, so the Keyser City Council awarded an emergency grant of just over $3300 to make the repairs, with all but a $500 deductible to be covered by insurance. The repairs were to have been completed by yesterday.

 

Storms Create Havoc at Pendleton, Wood County Fairs

Three people were injured by storms at the Pendleton and Wood County fairs in West Virginia. A storm blew the roof off of a carnival game, and injured a worker in Pendleton County; lightning hit two brothers who were attending the West Virginia Interstate Fair and Exposition in Mineral Wells. The lightning struck Kyle and Keith Townsend as they were putting up an awning on the family camper. They both suffered burns to their feet.

 

Sheriff’s Trial May Be Delayed

The trial for Jefferson County Sheriff Bobby Shirley may be delayed at the request of his attorneys. Shirley is going to trial after being accused of a civil rights violation and one of falsifying records. His attorneys are asking that trial be delayed until the spring of next year. Mark Haines, who had been an inmate at the Allegany County Detention Center, filed the charges against Shirley, following a December, 2010 arrest. The trial was originally scheduled to get underway on August 7th.

 

O’Malley Promises Gambling Proposal

Governor Martin O’Malley is promising legislation to expand gambling by the end of this week. And, while House Speaker Michael Busch said a meeting held earlier this week with the Governor was “productive,” he wasn’t sure if any minds were changed. O’Malley is still interested in holding a special session so that lawmakers can pass a bill in time for the measure to go before voters this fall. Ballot questions must be finalized by August 20th.

Local News


Increased Police Presence on Mall Planned

 

About 150 people attended a meeting last night at Windsor Hall, to discuss how to improve conditions on the downtown Cumberland Mall. Concerns included loitering, drug use, foul language and inappropriate attire. Captain Greg Leake of the Cumberland City Police Department says his department will try to increase its presence on the mall. Several on hand wondered whether the city could create a “Code of Conduct” on the mall, including a dress code; as far as loitering is concerned, Captain Leake pointed out that arresting people for loitering is unconstitutional. Mall Manager Ed Mullaney noted that the issues presented last night were “solvable issues.”

 

Origin of Fatal Fire Identified

 

The origin of a triple-fatal fire last Friday morning in Fort Ashby was located in the hallway of the apartment building, but the exact cause remains under investigation. Autopsies have been conducted on three victims, and fire investigators have revisited the scene of the blaze several times as part of the ongoing investigation. The fire left 15 to 20 people homeless, and caused about a half-million dollars damage to the building, which also housed Cindi’s Restaurant and the Sav-A-Lot Pharmacy.

 

 

Keyser Attempts to Address High Weed Problem

 

While it has had some success addressing blighted properties, the Keyser Mayor and City Council has had some trouble addressing high weeds and grass. There has been little success in enforcing a city ordinance on weeds and tall grass, according to the Mineral News-Triune. The city decided not to revise its current policy on the matter, citing the fact that such policies are difficult to enforce.

 

Keyser To Advertise for Resource Officer

 

The Mineral County Board of Education will advertise for a new resource officer, following the resignation of Deputy Paul Karalewitz, for health reason. The Mineral County Board of Education feels it should be involved in the process, because it will be shouldering an extra $30,000 for the position, because of state grant cuts for school officers.

 

Body Found in Cheat River

 

A body was recovered earlier this week in the Cheat River in Preston County. The body, identified by family members as David Watts of Eglon, was found in about 15 inches of water, near Macomber, along the George Washington Highway at the intersection of Route 72 and 50. The body has been sent to the state medical examiner’s office in Charleston for positive identification. No foul play is suspected.

 

City Paving Cumberland Street

 

The city of Cumberland is notifying residents that Cumberland Street is being paved today, from 7 a.m. To 5 p.m. Cumberland Street will be reduced to one lane traffic, with a flagging operation in place and all feeder streets onto Cumberland Street, from Carroll to Lee Street will be closed during those hours. Parking will be restricted as posted. Please use caution and obey all traffic control devices and flaggers in the area. Motorists should also expect delays during the hours of 7 a.m. To 5 p.m. today.

 

Police Seeking Church Vandals

 

Summit, Pennsylvania law enforcement officials are looking for a person or persons who vandalized a church, originally built in 1850. Messages such as “Hail Satan,” and “666” were spray painted on Center Church. Summit Township Supervisor Walt Lenhart says he will try to remove the messages on the church with a solvent, but the sign may have to be replaced. Anyone with information is asked to contact police there at (814)-634-5364.

 

Columbia Gas Warns of Scam

 

Columbia Gas of Maryland is warning its customers of a nationwide scam, designed to elicit personal information and account numbers through a bogus offer of an “Obama Energy Credit.” Customers are asked to register for the credit by furnishing information, including Social Security numbers and other information. Columbia Gas says there is no such energy credit available. The utility says it has not yet received any reports of Maryland customers subjected to the scam.

 

Industrial Employment in Region Falls 2.3 Per Cent

 

Manufacturer’s News Incorporated has issued a report on industrial employment in the Maryland and Washington, D.C. Area, that shows a 2.3 per cent drop in a year-over-year period, ending in May. The region lost over 4400 jobs during that time. Employment also fell in the industrial machinery and equipment manufacturing sector, which employs more than18,000 people. Baltimore is still the largest city for manufacturing employment with over 31,000 workers; however, there was a 3.1 per cent job loss during the 12-month period.

 

No Agreement on Special Session

 

A meeting among Governor Martin O’Malley and legislative leaders ended Tuesday without an agreement on a special session to expand gambling. No additional meetings are scheduled. While the Governor commented that the meeting was productive, House Speaker Michael Busch was quoted as saying, “We came to no conclusion, that’s about it.” A decision needs to be made within the next ten days, before an August deadline to approve ballot language for voters to get the final say in November.

 

Man Found Guilty of Two Counts of Murder

 

Antonio Prophet has been found guilty of murdering his girlfriend and her young son, and will be sentenced in September. Prophet was found guilty of first and second degree murder and first degree arson in the death of Angela Devonshire and her three year old son in Berkeley County in June of 2010. After the murder, Prophet was accused of setting fire to the home; the bodies of the victims were said to have been burned beyond recognition.

 

 

Pennsylvania Police Search for Missing Maryland Man

 

 

The Pennsylvania State Police are asking for help in finding a Maryland man, whose car was found empty along Interstate 99 in Blair County, Pennsylvania. Sixty-five year old David Frasier has been missing since Sunday; he is known to be suffering from early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to contact Pennsylvania State Police.

 

 

Local News


Single Vehicle Accident Results in Fatality

 

Ridgeley, West Virginia resident James Stair was killed in a single vehicle accident near Fort Ashby Sunday. Stair’s Dodge Caravan had been traveling east on Route 46, when he lost control of the vehicle. It crossed left of center, went off the roadway and struck a large tree. He was pronounced dead at the scene by Mineral County Medical Examiner Chris Guynn.
 

 

Discussion on Downtown Cumberland to be Held

 

Several organizations have set a public discussion, with the goal of making downtown Cumberland a better place for all. The discussion will take place tonight, beginning at 7 p.m. The location for the meeting has been changed to Windsor Hall, to accommodate the number of residents expected to attend. This will be an opportunity for the organizations and the public to voice their thoughts on problems, and offer comments and suggestions. Questions and comments should be submitted in advance to downtownmanager@verizon.net or thast@allconet.org, so that an agenda can be developed for the evening. It is also asked that you RSVP if attending, so that seating can be arranged, by calling Ed Mullaney at (301)-722-5500 or Terri Hast at (301)-722-4173.
 

 

Maryland SHA Working in I-68/Greene Street Area Next Week

 

The Maryland State Highway Administration is closing Route 220 (Greene Street) under the I-68 overpass to northbound traffic, beginning on Tuesday. This is part of the $3.3 million project to improve and reconstruct the U.S. Route 220/I-68 interchange in Cumberland. The closure will be temporary, and be less than a quarter mile. Detours will be in place throughout the project. Weather permitting, northbound U.S. Route 220 will reopen in late summer and the entire interchange project should be finished by late fall.
 

 

Leak Disrupts Water Service

 

A water line leak along Route 220 yesterday disrupted service to nearly every home and business from the Park-N-Ride lot to American Woodmark. A spokesperson for the Allegany County Department of Emergency Services says a 20-inch water main burst, disrupting service. Crews were quickly on the scene, attempting to restore service.
 

 

Keyser Attempts to Address High Weed Problem

 

While it has had some success addressing blighted properties, the Keyser Mayor and City Council has had trouble addressing high weeds and grass. There has been little success in enforcing a city ordinance on weeds and tall grass, according to the Mineral News-Tribune. The city decided not to revise current city policy on the matter, citing the fact that such policies are notoriously difficult to enforce. In the meantime, city officials there are hoping for an early frost, something one official says is unrealistic this time of year.
 

 

NTSB Releases Preliminary Report on Plane Crash

 

Few new details have been released in a preliminary report on a fatal plane crash last month in Monongalia County. The National Transportation Safety Board noted in the report that the pilot, Richard Lee Lambert, who was killed,  had over 22,000 hours flight experience. The pilot dropped off three passengers in Farmington, Pennsylvania, then proceeded to the Morgantown Municipal Airport. The plane descended 3,000 feet, before hitting the antenna of a communications tower. The preliminary findings state that there is no evidence of any malfunctions with the flight controls.
 

 

Industrial Employment in Region Falls 2.3 Per Cent

 

Manufacturers’ News Incorporated has issued a report on industrial employment in the Maryland and Washington, D.C. area that shows a 2.3 per cent drop in a year-over-year period, ending in May. The region lost over 4400 jobs during the period. Employment also fell in the industrial machinery and equipment manufacturing sector, which employs more than 18,000 people. Baltimore is still the largest city for manufacturing employment with over 31,000 workers; however, there was a 3.1 per cent job loss during the 12-month period.
 

 


U.S. News & World Report Ranks Hopkins Second

 

Johns Hopkins has dropped to second place in U.S. News and World Report’s rankings. Massachusetts General of Boston is now number one. The difference between the two was once point in specialty areas, with Mass Gen having 16 number one specialties, to 15 for Johns Hopkins. Hopkins has been rated number one for almost every year since the magazine began listing the “best of the best” in 1991. The two hospitals were actually tied in points scored with 30 points each.
 

 

Man Found Guilty of Two Counts of Murder

 

Antonio Prophet has been found guilty of murdering his girlfriend and her young son, and will be sentenced in September. Prophet was found guilty of first and second degree murder and first degree arson in the death of Angela Devonshire and her three year old son in June of 2010. After the murder, the home set ablaze, and the bodies were burned beyond recognition.

Local News


Cause of Triple-Fatal Fire Under Investigation

The cause of last Friday’s triple-fatal fire in Fort Ashby remains under investigation. The third victim has been identified as 63-year old Richard Sherry, who resided in the apartment complex above Cindi’s Restaurant and the Sav-A-Lot Pharmacy along Route 28. Also killed in the blaze were 43-year old Brenda Whiteman and her son, 20-year old Zachary.

 

Deer With Rabies Kicks Woman

George’s Creek Boulevard resident Theresa Stevens is undergoing a series of post-exposure rabies shots that will continue into next month, after being kicked in the face by a deer that had the disease. The deer was euthanized, and tests revealed, on July 9th, that the animal had rabies. The doe may also have had Chronic Wasting Disease, and tests on that are being anticipated. CWD is not known, however, to affect humans.

 

Memorial Service Set for Rick Michels

Memorial services for Rick Michels, who along with his wife Terry, owned and operated the Queen City Creamery, will be held on Thursday at 3 p.m. The Memorial Mass will be held at Sts. Pter and Paul Shrine on Fayette Street. A reception will be held in the Parish Hall.  The family is asking that, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Downtown Cumberland Business Association, 320 Greene Street, Cumberland.

 

Garrett County Man Arrested in Cumberland

Mountain Lake Park resident Curtis Markeith Johnson was arrested over this past weekend. Cumberland Police were dispatched to the area of Fourth Street and Virginia Avenue, to find a person sleeping in a van, which he did not own. He jumped out of the van, and began running to a nearby alley. Johnson was arrested soon after, and also charged with CDS Possession, possession of paraphernalia, disorderly conduct and tampering with a motor vehicle. He was held on $5,000 bond.

 

Woman Killed in Crash

Fifty-two year old Maysville, West Virginia resident Joyce Sherman was killed, and eight members of a Burlington family were injured when a pickup truck and van collided late Sunday on Patterson Creek Road. The crash happened around 9 p.m., just north of Greenland Road. The truck, driven by Sherman, crossed the center line of Patterson Creek Road, causing the crash with a van driven by James Brent Hartlzer, and occupied by Charlotte Hartzler and six children, ages 2 through 13. The accident remains under investigation.

 

Former Officer Placed in ARD Program

A former Somerset County police officer has been placed in the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition or ARD program. Jason Michael Ponczek was accused of accepting a $500 bribe last February in exchange for withholding drug charges against an individual. When he completes the program, the charges will be dismissed and Ponczek will be able to request that the court expunge his record. Former Officer Ponczek must wear an electronic monitoring device while on the program; in addition, he must perform 20 hours of community service.

 

Summer Commencement Exercise Held

Eleven Allegany County Public School students and members of the graduating class of 2012 received their Maryland High School diplomas during a summer commencement held at the Board of Education central office. Students and their families heard remarks from school board members. All speakers delivered compelling messages to the graduates and reminded them to cherish their education and to be sure to thank the countless people who helped them along the way.

 

Bartlett Posts Best Fundraising Quarter in Years

Representative Roscoe Bartlett has posted his best fundraising quarter in years on Friday, but his opponent in the November election, John  Delaney raised more money. Bartlett collected over $372,000 in the past three months, while Delaney raised more than $450,000 in the same period. Delaney spent about $1.7 million of his own money on the primary. The General Election is November 6th.

 

Senators Urge Fines for Power Companies

Two Maryland State Senators-Brian Frosh of Montgomery County and James Rosapepe of Prince George’s-are calling on state regulators to fine two companies, Pepco and Baltimore Gas and Electric, more than $100 million each for the long power outages suffered by residents, as the result of the June 29th storm. The fine could be used to create a “Surge Reserve” fund to help pay for additional, trained workers to help restore power faster.

 

Governor Tomblin Wants Review of Storm Response

West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin says he wants a full review of the Mountain State’s response to the June 29th derecho. At issue is the work of state agencies, county and local emergency management offices, 911 centers, the West Virginia National Guard, utility companies, volunteer organizations and other groups. The Governor wants to ensure that West Virginia will be prepared for future emergencies.

Local News


Two Victims of Fire Identified

 

Two of three victims in Friday morning’s fire in Fort Ashby have been identified. Forty-three year old Brenda Whiteman and her 20-year old son died in the fire. A third victim, believed to be a man in his 60’s, who also lived in the building, was not identified, pending notification of next of kin. The fire left 15 to 20 people homeless, and was reported around 2:20 a.m. Friday. The apartments were located above Cindi’s Restaurant and the Sav-A-Lot pharmacy, and property losses were placed at between $500,000 and $1 million. The cause of the fire has yet to be determined.

 

 

 

Shanks Woman Killed in Collision

 

Shanks, West Virginia resident Elizabeth Whitacre was killed late last week, when she swerved to avoid a tractor-trailer that had traveled into her lane on Route 50. The truck, driven by Orange, Virginia resident Freddie Shoemake, traveled into her lane, causing Ms. Whitacre to swerve off the north edge of the roadway. She then struck the left side of another truck, operated by Walter C. Davis of Romney. The investigation is continuing.

 

 

 

Cause of Charles Street Determined to be Accidental

 

The cause of the July 3rd fire on Charles Street has been determined to be accidental, the result of a mulch bed, which ignited. The fire caused about $100,000 damage to 212 to 214 Charles Street. Losses were placed at $20,000 in damage to 216 Charles Street at at $5,000 damage to 218 Charles Street. There were no injuries to the residents of the buildings.

 

 

Local Businessman Passes Away

 

Local businessman Rick Michels passed away early yesterday morning. He and his wife, Terry, owned and operated the Queen City Creamery in Cumberland. He is survived by his wife and several siblings and children. Plans for a funeral service have not yet been announced.

 

 

Keyser Woman Arrested on Warrants

 

Keyser resident Brittany McGoye has been arrested by the Keyser City Police. She was wanted by three area law enforcement agencies, including the Allegany County Sheriff’s Office. Ms McGoye was arrested on several offenses, including petit larceny and receiving stolen property. She was located at a residence in the 200-block of Virginia Street. She was aware of efforts to find her, and had made attempts to conceal a vehicle she was using. She was taken to the Potomac Highlands Regional Jail, where she was held on $2500 bond.

 

 

Man Arrested for Indecent Exposure

 

Westernport resident Joseph Robosson has been arrested for indecent exposure. Robosson is accused of exposing himself to runners as they ran by his residence, while participating in a 5K run. The Allegany County Sheriff’s Office is asking other participants in the run who may have witnessed the incident, to call them at (301)-777-1585,

 

 

 

Woman Sentenced in Death of Child

 

A former Somerset woman was sentenced to 74 days to 24 months for her role in the death of her 18-month old child in August of last year. Amanda Jayne Svenungsen was paroled immediately and released from electronic monitoring. She has agreed to testify in the trial of Cody Schartiger, who is awaiting trial on homicide charges in the case. Ms. Svenungsen was asleep in the house,when her daughter died from injuries police claim were caused through physical abuse by Schartiger.

 

 

 

Slanesville Man Faces Further Charges

 

Slanesville, West Virginia resident Jerico Vanhorn faces further charges, after police were called to him home to investigate a domestic battery incident. Police were called to a residence on Spring Gap Road, where a woman reported Vanhorn, her boyfriend, had battered her. During the investigation, three large plastic bags, containing marijuana, and a marijuana plant were found inside the home. Firearms were also found, but Vanhorn is prohibited from possessing a firearm, because of a previous domestic violence conviction. He was charged with felony offenses and domestic battery.

 

 

 

O’Malley Deciding on Special Session

 

Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley is planning two days of meetings this week, to decide whether he will call a mid-August special session of the General Assembly to deal with gambling expansion. He will meet tomorrow with House Speaker Michael Busch and Senate President Mike Miller, which could decide whether to move forward with a plan to put a gambling referendum on the November ballot.

 

Local News-UPDATE


Fatalities Reported in Fort Ashby Fire

Three people were killed in an early morning fire, in an apartment complex on the second floor of Cindi’s Restaurant and the Sav-A-Lot Pharmacy in Fort Ashby. The victims were located in two separate apartments on the second floor of the complex. Several victims were rescued from the wood-framed structure, prior to the arrival of firefighters. The building is owned by John Daskal and Denver DeHaven; Daskal, who lived in a basement apartment, is also the pharmacist at Sav-A-Lot. Fire units from West Virginia and Maryland responded. At least one firefighter was taken to the hospital with an ankle injury. As a result of firefighting efforts, the Frankfort Public Service District is asking customers in the Fort Ashby, Short Gap and Patterson Creek areas to help conserve water throughout the weekend, until the water tanks are refilled.

 

Bedford County Prison Guards File Lawsuit

Two former Bedford County prison guards have filed suit, alleging civil rights violations and that former warden Donald Orr demonstrated blatant sexism against female employees. Orr has since resigned, amid a secretive investigation. The former guards-Lt. Tina Hillegas of Schellsburg and Lt. Gloria Sadler of Fishertown-say Orr gave male employees preferential treatment, after he was hired in 2010. For her part, Hillegas’ suit alleges that Orr forced her to resign when he ordered her to perform “jobs that would have violated the law.” The suit was filed against Bedford County, and nor Orr as an individual.

 

Juvenile Arrested in Soda Bottle Bomb Incident

A 15-year old male juvenile has been charged with making a “soda bottle bomb” and dropping it in a trash can while walking to school in the 100-block of Valley Street last May 25th.  He has been charged with the manufacturing, possession and distribution of an Improvised Explosive Device, and released to the custody of his aunt pending actions by the Department of Juvenile Services.

 

Changes To Transit Plan Presented to Commissioners

Revisions to Allegany County transit bus routes and an increase in fares were presented to the Allegany County Commissioners during Thursday’s business meeting. The changes were made because of concerns from riders and drivers that have been expressed at recent meetings. A goal of the original plan was to save as much as $125,000 per year, as well as ensure long-term savings. One of the changes is cutting the proposed Alltrans fare from $4 to $3.

 

Keyser Man Arrested on Drug Charges

The Maryland State Police arrested a Keyser man early this morning, and he now faces drug distribution charges. He was initially stopped around 1:40 a.m. for speeding. Twenty-four year old Shane Sneathen was arrested, after a vehicle search revealed he had about 113 grams of marijuana in the car, along with paraphernalia that indicated his intent to distribute the drug. He was taken to an Allegany County District Court Commissioner for a bond review.

 

Court House Closure Causes Conflict in Mineral County

The Chief Justice of the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals ordered all courts closed on Monday, July 2nd, as the result of widespread power outages from the previous weekend’s storms. However, the Mineral County courthouse was ordered opened by the Commissioners. Following that, Mineral County Circuit Court Judge Lynn Nelson issued an order upholding the original order to close. All employees were compensated for the closure. Circuit Court Clerk Krista Dixon noted that the commissioners pay the staff, but the court tells staff members what to do, according to the Mineral News-Tribune.

 

Pennsylvania Man Stopped and Arrested for Drug Violations

Hershey, Pennsylvania resident Michael John Horetsky faces possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia charges, following a stop on Interstate 68 Wednesday evening. A Cumberland City Police officer smelled the odor of marijuana coming from his vehicle, following a traffic stop. The vehicle was searched and the drug was located. He was taken to District Court and held on $2,000 bond at the Allegany County Detention Center.

 

Jaycess Conduct “Beautiful Baby,” or “Pretty Pet” Contest

The Western Maryland Jaycees, in cooperation with the Allegany County Fair and Ag Expo is once again sponsoring the “Beautiful Baby” and the “Prettiest Pet” contest at this year’s fair. This is the tenth anniversary for the contest. All photo submissions will be on display at the Fair next week; the Jaycess will have a booth under the grandstand. For more information on the contest, or to submit an entry, visit the Jaycees website at www.wmdjaycees.org.

 

Expanded Enterprise Zone Approved by State

The state of Maryland has approved an expanded enterprise zone for the Hagerstown-Washington County area. The zone will expand from 1400 acres to nearly 4100 acres, increasing the opportunity for businesses to receive tax credits. The expanded zone includes the Hagerstown Business Park and CSX/Valley Park. The enterprise zone program allows businesses to receive a one-time, $1,000 credit for each new employee they hire, or $6,000 over a three year period for new employees who are considered “economically disadvantaged.”

 

Gas Prices Up Slightly Outisde of Area

Gas prices have increased nationally for the first time since April, with the national average rising a penny from $3.35 to $3.36; the state average rose from $3.32 to $3.36 a gallon. Outside of the Western Maryland area, including Hagerstown and Cumberland, prices rose throughout the state. Gas prices should gradually shift upward over the next few weeks, according to Triple-A Mid-Atlantic’s Gas Watch.

Local News


Former Bedford County Prison Guards File Lawsuit

Two former Bedford County prison guards have filed suit, alleging civil rights violations and that former warden Donald Orr demonstrated blatant sexism against female employees. Orr has since resigned, amid a secretive investigation. The former guards-Lt. Tina Hillegas of Schellsburg and Lt. Gloria Sadler of Fishertown-say Orr gave male employees preferential treatment, after he was hired in 2010. For her part, Hillegas’ suit alleges that Orr forced her to resign when he ordered her to perform “jobs that would have violated the law.” The suit was filed against Bedford County, and nor Orr as an individual.

 

Juvenile Arrested in Soda Bottle Bomb Incident

A 15-year old male juvenile has been charged with making a “soda bottle bomb” and dropping it in a trash can while walking to school in the 100-block of Valley Street last May 25th.  He has been charged with the manufacturing, possession and distribution of an Improvised Explosive Device, and released to the custody of his aunt pending actions by the Department of Juvenile Services.

 

Changes To Transit Plan Presented to Commissioners

Revisions to Allegany County transit bus routes and an increase in fares were presented to the Allegany County Commissioners during Thursday’s business meeting. The changes were made because of concerns from riders and drivers that have been expressed at recent meetings. A goal of the original plan was to save as much as $125,000 per year, as well as ensure long-term savings. One of the changes is cutting the proposed Alltrans fare from $4 to $3.

 

Keyser Man Arrested on Drug Charges

The Maryland State Police arrested a Keyser man early this morning, and he now faces drug distribution charges. He was initially stopped around 1:40 a.m. for speeding. Twenty-four year old Shane Sneathen was arrested, after a vehicle search revealed he had about 113 grams of marijuana in the car, along with paraphernalia that indicated his intent to distribute the drug. He was taken to an Allegany County District Court Commissioner for a bond review.

 

Court House Closure Causes Conflict in Mineral County

The Chief Justice of the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals ordered all courts closed on Monday, July 2nd, as the result of widespread power outages from the previous weekend’s storms. However, the Mineral County courthouse was ordered opened by the Commissioners. Following that, Mineral County Circuit Court Judge Lynn Nelson issued an order upholding the original order to close. All employees were compensated for the closure. Circuit Court Clerk Krista Dixon noted that the commissioners pay the staff, but the court tells staff members what to do, according to the Mineral News-Tribune.

 

Pennsylvania Man Stopped and Arrested for Drug Violations

Hershey, Pennsylvania resident Michael John Horetsky faces possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia charges, following a stop on Interstate 68 Wednesday evening. A Cumberland City Police officer smelled the odor of marijuana coming from his vehicle, following a traffic stop. The vehicle was searched and the drug was located. He was taken to District Court and held on $2,000 bond at the Allegany County Detention Center.

 

Jaycess Conduct “Beautiful Baby,” or “Pretty Pet” Contest

The Western Maryland Jaycees, in cooperation with the Allegany County Fair and Ag Expo is once again sponsoring the “Beautiful Baby” and the “Prettiest Pet” contest at this year’s fair. This is the tenth anniversary for the contest. All photo submissions will be on display at the Fair next week; the Jaycess will have a booth under the grandstand. For more information on the contest, or to submit an entry, visit the Jaycees website at www.wmdjaycees.org.

 

Expanded Enterprise Zone Approved by State

The state of Maryland has approved an expanded enterprise zone for the Hagerstown-Washington County area. The zone will expand from 1400 acres to nearly 4100 acres, increasing the opportunity for businesses to receive tax credits. The expanded zone includes the Hagerstown Business Park and CSX/Valley Park. The enterprise zone program allows businesses to receive a one-time, $1,000 credit for each new employee they hire, or $6,000 over a three year period for new employees who are considered “economically disadvantaged.”

 

Gas Prices Up Slightly Outisde of Area

Gas prices have increased nationally for the first time since April, with the national average rising a penny from $3.35 to $3.36; the state average rose from $3.32 to $3.36 a gallon. Outside of the Western Maryland area, including Hagerstown and Cumberland, prices rose throughout the state. Gas prices should gradually shift upward over the next few weeks, according to Triple-A Mid-Atlantic’s Gas Watch.

Local News


 Stabbing Incident on Maryland Avenue

A reported stabbing incident yesterday afternoon brought out Cumberland fire, ambulance and police units to the 400-block of Maryland Avenue. A 19-year old male victim reportedly suffered a stab wound to the back. The victim was taken to the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center, following initial treatment at the scene. Police had been on the lookout for a late model, blue Jeep with tinted windows and occupied by four juveniles, ages 15 to 19 years of age. The vehicle was last seen traveling away from the 400-block of Maryland Avenue in an unknown direction. Anyone with information is asked to contact Cumberland City Police, the C3I unit, or the Allegany/Mineral County Crimesolvers Unit at (301)-722-4300.

 

Man Killed by CSX Train

A 21-year old Cumberland man, Justin Dilley, was killed by an oncoming train Tuesday night, while running across the CSX tracks in an area south of  Hyndman. Just after 6 p.m., the Pennsylvania State Police responded to the incident. Dilley tripped while running across the tracks, and was struck by an oncoming train; he was pronounced dead at the scene by the Bedford County Coroner. The investigation is continuing and it is not known if alcohol played a factor in the incident, as toxicology reports are pending.

 

Judge Affirms Education Decision

Allegany County Circuit Court Judge Gary Leasure has reaffirmed the Maryland State Board of Education decision that local school officials were within their bounds, when they ended a program that allowed students in eastern Allegany County to attend school in Washington County. A group of Little Orleans parents has been trying for more than a year to keep their children in Washington County. In a July 9th ruling, Judge Leasure saw no grounds to overturn the state ruling.

 

Route 219 Bidding Could Begin This Year

Although there is no official timeline for the completion of Route 219 from Somerset to Meyersdale, bidding for the initial excavation work would begin as early as this year. The project is already under design; the earthwork portion of the project will be bid this year or early next year, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

 

Woman Served Two Arrest Warrants

Cumberland resident Amber Leigh Wilson was served with two arrest warrants, the first being the result of an investigation by Cumberland City Police. Ms. Wilson is accused of taking a game console and games, and then trying to pawn them in Cumberland. She was also served with a bench warrant for failure to appear. She was taken to District for an initial appearance and held on $3,000 bond on the theft warrant, and $5,000 for the bench warrant.

 

Discussion on Downtown Cumberland to be Held

Several organizations have set a public discussion, with the goal of making downtown Cumberland a better place for all. The discussion will take place next Wednesday, July18th in the City Hall council room, beginning at 7 p.m. This will be an opportunity for the organizations and the public to voice their thoughts on problems, and offer comments and suggestions. Questions and comments should be submitted in advance to downtownmanager@verizon.net or thast@allconet.org, so that an agenda can be developed for the evening. It is also asked that you RSVP if attending, so that seating can be arranged, by calling Ed Mullaney at (301)-722-5500 or Terri Hast at (301)-722-4173.

 

Bedford Tax Rates Could Drop by One Third

Real estate tax rates could drop by as much as a third in Bedford County, the result of higher property values in this summer’s reassessment. The county’s taxable value has been set at $3.3 billion, more than 37 per cent higher than the current value; property values must be cut accordingly, as per state law. Property owners have been receiving new values in the mail, since late last week.

 

Bridge Preservation Projects Underway

Although it won’t happen to two bridges in the Bedford County area until next season, there are several bridges that will be rehabilitated beginning on Monday. Cottle’s Asphalt Maintenance of Everett will begin preservation work on four bridges then, but structures on Kennell’s Mills Road and Evitt’s Creek Road are scheduled for next construction season. This season’s work is scheduled to be completed by late October; the six-bridge project has an overall completion date of November, 2013.

 

Same Sex Referendum On November Ballot

The same-sex marriage referendum will be on the November ballot, with opponents of the measure collecting more than enough valid signatures. The Maryland Marriage Alliance, while collecting just over 162,000 signatures, needed only 55,736 valid signatures to get the issue on the ballot. Both the same sex marriage issue, along with the DREAM act will be on the ballot.

 

Man Enters Not Guilty Plea

Antonio Prophet, accused of killing a Bunker Hill, West Virginia woman and her three-year old son, entered a not guilty plea in Berkeley County court Tuesday. Prophet is accused of killing Angela Devonshire and her son Andre White, and setting their home on fire two years ago. Ms. Devonshire would have celebrated her 24th birthday last month. She also has a child, who was just six weeks old at the time of the alleged murders. He is living with other family members.

Local News-UPDATE


Cumberland Man Dies in Motorcycle Accident

Twenty-four year old Duston Mathew Detrick of Link Avenue was killed in a motorcycle crash Monday evening, after crashing into a culvert near Barton Park Drive in Rawlings. He left his residence Sunday morning and failed to return home. The crash scene was discovered around 6:50 p.m. Monday. Detrick was pronounced dead at the scene. The fatal crash occurred as the bike traveled off the roadway and struck a culvert. The LaVale barrack of the Maryland State Police is continuing its investigation.  

 

Man Killed by CSX Train

A 21-year old Cumberland man was killed by an oncoming train last night, while running along the CSX tracks in Hyndman. Just after 6 p.m., the Pennsylvania State Police responded to the incident. The victim tripped while running along the trucks and was struck by an oncoming train; he was pronounced dead at the scene by the Bedford County Coroner. The investigation is continuing and it is now known if alcohol played a factor in the incident, as toxicology reports are pending.

 

Board Adopts FY ’13 Budget

The Allegany County Board of Education has adopted a smaller budget for the fiscal year, $2 million lower than 2012. There are several cuts in the budget, including the elimination of 28 positions, including teachers. One big chunk of the budget is $1.5 million for the cost of teacher pensions, which state law now requires the counties to provide.

 

Judge Reverses Fine, Upholds MDE Permit Denial for Fibred

Allegany County Circuit Court Judge Gary Leasure has upheld Maryland Department of the Environment Actions against a local wastewater processing company, but reversed a $50,000 fine against the company. Mexico Farms, LLC processes wastewater for Fibred, Incorporated. In his opinion, Judge Leasure says “there is substantial evidence to support MDE’s determination to deny renewal of the permit,” even though Fibred was not targeted in the MDE action against Mexico Farms, which remains in bankruptcy proceedings.

 

Man Released on Personal Recognizance

A twenty-year old Cumberland man was released on personal recognizance, after being arrested on drug charges. Benton Wayne Bradford was initially stopped on Industrial Boulevard for a traffic violation, and was allegedly acting in a suspicious manner. He then allegedly handed over some marijuana to the officer. Bradford was charged with possession of CDS (marijuana) and possession of CDS paraphernalia. He was taken to District Court for an initial appearance.

 

Fair Kicks Off Saturday

The 116th Allegany County Fair and Ag Expo gets underway Saturday at the Fairgrounds. The fair has grandstand entertainment, animals and exhibits, rides, fireworks and lots of great food. Allegany County Government has sponsored the fair for 27 years. For more information, visit the website, www.alleganycofair.org.

 

Man Charged With Animal Cruelty

A Falling Waters, West Virginia man is faces 141 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty. Fifty-four year old Rocky Del Trolio is accused of 130 dogs and several cats. Berkeley County officials removed the animals in mid-June from Trolio’s home, after hearing testimony from a Berkeley County Animal Control officer. Trolio was released on an over $42,000 bond, including the a bond of over $11,000 that was set earlier, to cover the cost of the animals’ care for 30 days.

 

Berkeley County Murder Trial Begins

The trial of Antonio Prophet began yesterday in Berkeley County Circuit Court. Prophet is accused of the murder of 22-year old Angela Devonshire and her 3-year old son, before setting their home on fire on June 6, 2010. He has been in jail since his June, 2010 arrest. He was found in a North Carolina homeless shelter.

 

Two Arrested Following Carjacking

Forty-year old James Odans and 25-year old Megan Marie Sweeney of Hagerstown, have been arrested in connection with a carjacking incident in Frederick County. The two were being given a ride from Wiliamsport to Frederick by 67-year old William Newton of Frederick. While stopped along Route 40, the two drove off with Newton’s Plymouth van. It was located a short time later on Easterday Road in Frederick County. Both Odans and Sweeney have been charged with the theft of a motor vehicle, theft and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

 

Death Toll Now at 18 From Maryland Heat

A total of 18 people have now died of heat-related causes in the state, and that number may still grow. Eight deaths were reported Saturday through Monday, including two out-of-state residents who died in Harford and Prince George’s counties. The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is applauding efforts of people for following the advice of the health department.

 

Local News-UPDATE


Cumberland Man Dies in Motorcycle Accident

Twenty-four year old Duston Mathew Detrick of Link Avenue was killed in a motorcycle crash Monday evening, after crashing into a culvert near Barton Park Drive in Rawlings. He left his residence Sunday morning and failed to return home. The crash scene was discovered around 6:50 p.m. Monday. Detrick was pronounced dead at the scene. The fatal crash occurred as the bike traveled off the roadway and struck a culvert. The LaVale barrack of the Maryland State Police is continuing its investigation.  

 

Man Killed by CSX Train

A 21-year old Cumberland man was killed by an oncoming train last night, while running along the CSX tracks in Hyndman. Just after 6 p.m., the Pennsylvania State Police responded to the incident. The victim tripped while running along the trucks and was struck by an oncoming train; he was pronounced dead at the scene by the Bedford County Coroner. The investigation is continuing and it is now known if alcohol played a factor in the incident, as toxicology reports are pending.

 

Board Adopts FY ’13 Budget

The Allegany County Board of Education has adopted a smaller budget for the fiscal year, $2 million lower than 2012. There are several cuts in the budget, including the elimination of 28 positions, including teachers. One big chunk of the budget is $1.5 million for the cost of teacher pensions, which state law now requires the counties to provide.

 

Judge Reverses Fine, Upholds MDE Permit Denial for Fibred

Allegany County Circuit Court Judge Gary Leasure has upheld Maryland Department of the Environment Actions against a local wastewater processing company, but reversed a $50,000 fine against the company. Mexico Farms, LLC processes wastewater for Fibred, Incorporated. In his opinion, Judge Leasure says “there is substantial evidence to support MDE’s determination to deny renewal of the permit,” even though Fibred was not targeted in the MDE action against Mexico Farms, which remains in bankruptcy proceedings.

 

Man Released on Personal Recognizance

A twenty-year old Cumberland man was released on personal recognizance, after being arrested on drug charges. Benton Wayne Bradford was initially stopped on Industrial Boulevard for a traffic violation, and was allegedly acting in a suspicious manner. He then allegedly handed over some marijuana to the officer. Bradford was charged with possession of CDS (marijuana) and possession of CDS paraphernalia. He was taken to District Court for an initial appearance.

 

Fair Kicks Off Saturday

The 116th Allegany County Fair and Ag Expo gets underway Saturday at the Fairgrounds. The fair has grandstand entertainment, animals and exhibits, rides, fireworks and lots of great food. Allegany County Government has sponsored the fair for 27 years. For more information, visit the website, www.alleganycofair.org.

 

Man Charged With Animal Cruelty

A Falling Waters, West Virginia man is faces 141 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty. Fifty-four year old Rocky Del Trolio is accused of 130 dogs and several cats. Berkeley County officials removed the animals in mid-June from Trolio’s home, after hearing testimony from a Berkeley County Animal Control officer. Trolio was released on an over $42,000 bond, including the a bond of over $11,000 that was set earlier, to cover the cost of the animals’ care for 30 days.

 

Berkeley County Murder Trial Begins

The trial of Antonio Prophet began yesterday in Berkeley County Circuit Court. Prophet is accused of the murder of 22-year old Angela Devonshire and her 3-year old son, before setting their home on fire on June 6, 2010. He has been in jail since his June, 2010 arrest. He was found in a North Carolina homeless shelter.

 

Two Arrested Following Carjacking

Forty-year old James Odans and 25-year old Megan Marie Sweeney of Hagerstown, have been arrested in connection with a carjacking incident in Frederick County. The two were being given a ride from Wiliamsport to Frederick by 67-year old William Newton of Frederick. While stopped along Route 40, the two drove off with Newton’s Plymouth van. It was located a short time later on Easterday Road in Frederick County. Both Odans and Sweeney have been charged with the theft of a motor vehicle, theft and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

 

Death Toll Now at 18 From Maryland Heat

A total of 18 people have now died of heat-related causes in the state, and that number may still grow. Eight deaths were reported Saturday through Monday, including two out-of-state residents who died in Harford and Prince George’s counties. The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is applauding efforts of people for following the advice of the health department.

 

Local News


Cumberland Man Dies in Motorcycle Accident

Twenty-four year old Duston Mathew Detrick of Link Avenue was killed in a motorcycle crash Monday evening, after crashing into a culvert near Barton Park Drive in Rawlings. He left his residence Sunday morning and failed to return home. The crash scene was discovered around 6:50 p.m. Monday. Detrick was pronounced dead at the scene. The fatal crash occurred as the bike traveled off the roadway and struck a culvert. The LaVale barrack of the Maryland State Police is continuing its investigation.  

 

Board Adopts FY ’13 Budget

The Allegany County Board of Education has adopted a smaller budget for the fiscal year, $2 million lower than 2012. There are several cuts in the budget, including the elimination of 28 positions, including teachers. One big chunk of the budget is $1.5 million for the cost of teacher pensions, which state law now requires the counties to provide.

 

Judge Reverses Fine, Upholds MDE Permit Denial for Fibred

Allegany County Circuit Court Judge Gary Leasure has upheld Maryland Department of the Environment Actions against a local wastewater processing company, but reversed a $50,000 fine against the company. Mexico Farms, LLC processes wastewater for Fibred, Incorporated. In his opinion, Judge Leasure says “there is substantial evidence to support MDE’s determination to deny renewal of the permit,” even though Fibred was not targeted in the MDE action against Mexico Farms, which remains in bankruptcy proceedings.

 

Man Released on Personal Recognizance

A twenty-year old Cumberland man was released on personal recognizance, after being arrested on drug charges. Benton Wayne Bradford was initially stopped on Industrial Boulevard for a traffic violation, and was allegedly acting in a suspicious manner. He then allegedly handed over some marijuana to the officer. Bradford was charged with possession of CDS (marijuana) and possession of CDS paraphernalia. He was taken to District Court for an initial appearance.

 

Fair Kicks Off Saturday

The 116th Allegany County Fair and Ag Expo gets underway Saturday at the Fairgrounds. The fair has grandstand entertainment, animals and exhibits, rides, fireworks and lots of great food. Allegany County Government has sponsored the fair for 27 years. For more information, visit the website, www.alleganycofair.org.

 

Man Charged With Animal Cruelty

A Falling Waters, West Virginia man is faces 141 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty. Fifty-four year old Rocky Del Trolio is accused of 130 dogs and several cats. Berkeley County officials removed the animals in mid-June from Trolio’s home, after hearing testimony from a Berkeley County Animal Control officer. Trolio was released on an over $42,000 bond, including the a bond of over $11,000 that was set earlier, to cover the cost of the animals’ care for 30 days.

 

Berkeley County Murder Trial Begins

The trial of Antonio Prophet began yesterday in Berkeley County Circuit Court. Prophet is accused of the murder of 22-year old Angela Devonshire and her 3-year old son, before setting their home on fire on June 6, 2010. He has been in jail since his June, 2010 arrest. He was found in a North Carolina homeless shelter.

 

Two Arrested Following Carjacking

Forty-year old James Odans and 25-year old Megan Marie Sweeney of Hagerstown, have been arrested in connection with a carjacking incident in Frederick County. The two were being given a ride from Wiliamsport to Frederick by 67-year old William Newton of Frederick. While stopped along Route 40, the two drove off with Newton’s Plymouth van. It was located a short time later on Easterday Road in Frederick County. Both Odans and Sweeney have been charged with the theft of a motor vehicle, theft and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

 

Death Toll Now at 18 From Maryland Heat

A total of 18 people have now died of heat-related causes in the state, and that number may still grow. Eight deaths were reported Saturday through Monday, including two out-of-state residents who died in Harford and Prince George’s counties. The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is applauding efforts of people for following the advice of the health department.

Local News


New Page Offered Takeover Proposal

The NewPage Corporation, owner of the Luke paper mill, has declined a takeover offer from Verso Paper Corporation of Memphis, Tennessee. NewPage, which is in Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, has determined that the merger would have posed significant downside risks to its stakeholders, employees and business. The Luke Mill facility is planning to add nearly $16 million in capital improvements in the future.

 

State Police Investigate Vandalism

The Maryland State Police are currently investigating a vandalism incident in the area of 40 Main Street in Lonaconing. Several places were sprayed with white spray paint. Police have the surveillance tape, which showed a white male, spray painting several pieces of property at approximately 3:20 a.m. Friday morning. Anyone with information is asked to contact Senior Trooper Rankin at the Cumberland Barrack. That number is (301)-729-2101.

 

Repaving Operations Announced

The City of Cumberland will be milling Cumberland Street and Lee Street, in preparations for paving operations. The two streets will be reduced to one lane traffic today, with a flagging operation in place. Parking will also be restricted in the area. Please use caution and obey all traffic control devices and flaggers in the area. Motorists should also expect delays during this period.

 

Bedford Residents Arrested Following Stop

Twenty-four year old Michael Scott Kovach and 20-year old Michael David Coback, both of Bedford, were arrested, following a traffic stop in the Spring Street/Maryland Avenue area. Kovach was arrested for possession of CDS paraphernalia, and possession of CDS other than marijuana. He was held at the Allegany County Detention Center on $3,000 bond. Cobak had two active felony warrants from the state of Florida, and was held, pending extradition to the state of Florida.

 

State Police Appoint Commanders of LaVale and McHenry Barracks

The Maryland State Police have announced the appointment of Lt. Mike Fluharty to the position of Commander of the Cumberland Barrack, and Lt. Mark Rodeheaver to head the McHenry Barrack. Lt. Fluharty joined the Maryland State Police in 1997; until his recent promotion, he ran the day to day operations of the Maryland State Police Academy and oversaw the successful graduation of 160 new troopers. Lt. Rodeheaver is a 23-year member of the department and has served in many capacities while employed with the Maryland State Police.

 

SHA To Resurface Maryland Route 36

The Maryland State Highway Administration is beginning a resurfacing project on Route 36, the Mount Savage Road on Monday. They will resurface a 1-1/2 mile section of the road between Parkersburg Road and the and Route 36 at the southern end of Mount Savage, near New School Road. Weather permitting, the project will be completed before school resumes in late August. The approximate $600,000 contract was awarded to Keystone Lime of Springs, Pennsylvania.

 

Fresh Air Fund Welcomes Children

The Fresh Air Fund is welcoming a group of New York City children to the area on Tuesday, to spend part of their summer vacation with volunteer host families in the area. They are due to arrive in Allegany County on Tuesday at 3 p.m. at the Hampton Inn on New George’s Creek Road in Frostburg. A total of 21 children are coming to the area. Each summer, over 4,000 children visit volunteer families in rural, suburban and small town communities across 13 states from Virginia to Maine and Canada.

 

Insurance Administration to Visit Garrett County

The Maryland Insurance Administration is visiting Garrett County for two days this month, to help answer consumer questions on annuities to title insurance and health, auto and homeowners’ insurance. They will visit the Ruth Enlow Library in Grantsville from 1:30 to 5 p.m. on Thursday, July 19th. On Friday, July 20th, they will be visiting the Oakland Branch of the Ruth Enlow Library from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

 

Aircraft Company Locating in Hagerstown

Mecaer Aviation Group of Italy is opening a maintenance shop at the end of August at the Hagerstown Airport. The Washington County Commissioners approved a cash incentive of $20,000 a year for five years, and in return, the company will provide 18 new jobs, with salaries of at least $50,000. The goal of local officials is to make the airport a center of aerospace employment.

 

Reports to be Filed by Utility Companies

The head of the Maryland Public Service Commission says that all Maryland’s major electrical utilities will have to file reports on how they managed power restoration, and they have until 21 days after power is restored. Doug Nazarian says the commission will determine whether utilities’ systems should have done a better job, and what, if anything should be done about that.

Local News


Cookout May Have Sparked Fire

Fire officials say a backyard cookout on Tuesday afternoon may have caused the fire in the 200-block of Charles Street, but the exact cause is still under investigation. Twelve residents were displaced in the fire at 212-214 Charles Street.   Several firefighters were taken to the hospital for heat exhaustion. Many houses in that section of town are not equipped with smoke detectors. The home is owned by Marlin Stanczyk of Grantsville. Damage from the fire also extended to a double house at 214-216 Charles Street, before the blaze could be brought under control.

 

Power Restoration Efforts Continue

About 1,000 Potomac Edison customers in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia remain without power from Friday’s storm. Some isolated outages will continue through today. Overall more than 566,000 FirstEnergy customers in West Virginia, Maryland, Ohio and Pennsylvania lost power as a result of last Friday’s storm. There were sporadic outages from a storm that passed through the area on Wednesday. And, there is this reminder: the Constitution Park Pool, which has been without power since the storm, will reopen today, as power has now been restored.

 

Paw Paw Man Arrested for Drug Possession

Thirty-one year old Paw Paw, West Virginia resident David James Small faces numerous drug charges, following his arrest early yesterday morning in the North Mechanic Street area. David James Small was stopped for a traffic violation, and a subsequent search revealed a pill bottle with the label removed, 8 ritalin pills, three used hypodermic needles, a pill crusher, and two spoons, with burnt CDS residue on them. He was taken for a bond hearing and released on his own recognizance.

 

Debris Pickup Scheduled

The City of Cumberland has established a curbside debris pickup schedule, to help residents clean up from last Friday’s storm. The pickup is scheduled for today and Monday in the East Side area of the city. West Side debris will be collected today, Monday and Tuesday. And, in North End, the pickup is scheduled for Tuesday. After that is finished, the City will re-evaluate the community’s need and make needed return trips throughout the neighborhoods.

 

Paving Projects Scheduled

The Maryland State Highway Administration will begin a resurfacing on Route 219 and Maryland Route 39 in Oakland on Sunday. The SHA will mill, resurface, and restripe U.S. Route 219 between 8th Street and Center Street, as well as Maryland Route 39 from South Third Street to the Little Youghiogheny River Bridger. Weather permitting, the project should be completed by the end of July.

 

Berlin Mini-Mart Robbed

A clerk at the Coalfields MiniMart on Main Street in Berlin was robbed of an undetermined amount of cash early yesterday morning. A suspect entered the store around 1:45 a.m., displayed a knife and demanded money. He then fled on foot in an unknown direction. He was described as a white male in his mid-20’s or 30’s, and of thin build. Anyone with information should contact the Somerset barrack of the Pennsylvania State Police at (814)-445-4104.

 

Music Lineup Announced for Fort Hill 75th Anniversary

The live music lineup has been announced for tomorrow’s 75th anniversary celebration at Fort Hill, beginning at noon. The Flashbacks will kick off the musical lineup at noon, followed by performances by the Beaner McKinley Project, Simon Sez, the Kerensa Gray Jazz Performance, and Lady Invidia. There is a dance Saturday night at the downtown Cumberland Holiday Inn, from 8 to 11 p.m. Tickets for the dance are $20 per person or $30 per couple, and are available at Fort Hill’s main office.

 

Levels Drop at Yough Lake

The levels on the Youghiogheny Lake have dropped about five feet lower than usual, because of recent dry conditions, and certain recreational areas around the inflow area will close much sooner than expected. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has a goal of low-flow augmentation, or providing more water during times of low water levels.

Local News


Contractor Killed in Fall From Tree

A contractor who fell from a tree in Garrett County has died, marking
the fourth storm-related fatality in the state. The unidentified
contractor was removing limbs from a storm-damaged tree in Oakland, when
he fell 30 to 40 feet. Other storm-related deaths from last Friday
include a man who died when his boat capsized off southern Maryland and
a woman who died when a tree crashed into her home.


Man Arrested for Entering Vehicles

Twenty-seven year old Brian Alan Lindeman was held on $3,000 bond,
following his arrest for entering vehicles in the early morning hours of
Tuesday in the 1100-block of Virginia Avenue. Several stolen items from
a vehicle, that was unlocked, and were found and returned to the owner.
Lindeman was taken to District Court. The Cumberland City Police is
reminding residents to keep their vehicles locked and remove valuables
when left unattended.

 

Garrett Woman To Be Sentenced

Garrett County resident Karen Jean Hovatter is awaiting sentencing on various counts, after she was found guilty of those charges in Garrett County Circuit Court. Ms. Hovatter was found guilty of maintaining a common nuisance, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. Her bond was revoked. The charges were lodged after a search and seizure warrant was executed at her home in Mountain Lake Park in February.


Bedford Advances Second Reassessment

Bedford County is advancing the second reassessment in three years,
which will dictate residents’ property values for the next several
years. Overall, those values appear to be slightly lower than in 2009,
but changes vary from property to property. The appeals process begins
July 15th, a little more than a week after most property owners are set
to receive their new values. Residents who believe their assessments are
inaccurate, have until September 1st to submit appeals.


Suns Fined in Connection to Teen Death

The Hagerstown Suns baseball team has been fined $3500 in connection
with the death of 18-year old Mitchell Akers. The teen was working at
Municipal Stadium in April, when he fell from a vehicle and struck his
head. Additionally, the team was fined $5,000 for violations inspectors
found at the stadium as they investigated Akers’ death. The Maryland
Department of Occupational Safety and Health found the violations and
levied the fines against the team.


New Audit Reveals Wasted Money

The Maryland Office of Legislative Audits has uncovered as much as $63
million in wasted money over the past three years. Some state
departments are repeatedly making the same mistakes. As one example, the
Maryland Department of Health issued $2.5 million in tax dollars to
Medicaid recipients who are dead, and the Maryland Transit
Administration’s Paratransit Program paid out $744,000 in gas taxes,
even though it is exempt from paying it. In another example, the
University of Maryland, Baltimore County, failed to charge some students
tuition, while giving others improper refunds.


Police Investigating Jefferson Death

Police are investigating whether the death of a 66-year old Jefferson
County, West Virginia man was related to last Friday’s storm, which left
much of that region without power. The victim, who had used a wheelchair
and had pre-existing heart and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
problems, was found in his home, which was at least 95 degrees inside.
An autopsy is being conducted by the West Virginia Office of the Chief
Medical Examiner to determine if his death was, in fact, heat-related.

Local News


Most Power to be Restored by Thursday

Some small pockets of Potomac Edison customers may not have power restored until tomorrow. In Mineral and Hampshire Counties, power should be restored by tomorrow night. Residents are encouraged to transport tree debris to the Allegany County compost site on PPG Road in Mexico Farms. Residents who have been without power are reminded that food has surpassed the safe use period for consumption, if it has not been adequately refrigerated or frozen since the storm. Residents are also asked to check on their elderly neighbors during this time.

 

One Firefighter Transported to Hospital

One firefighter was taken to the hospital, while fighting a fire in the 200-block of Charles Street yesterday afternoon. The Allegany County Office of Emergency Services says the initial call was received at 3:50 p.m. The Allegany County Sheriff’s Office and the Maryland State Police assisted with calls in the city. At least seven fire companies from the surrounding area were on the scene. There were initial reports that there were people trapped in the building, but that was not the case. Firefighters remained on the scene for several hours yesterday afternoon.

 

Washington, D.C. Man Sentenced in Drug Case

Thirty-seven year old Antonio Hall of Washington, D.C. has been sentenced to 14 years in prison, with five suspended. He had pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute cocaine. When released, Hall will be on four years of supervised probation, including evaluation and treatment, and the forfeiture of $5,000. Hall was sentenced by Judge W. Timothy Finan in Allegany County Circuit Court.

 

Man Arrested on Outstanding Arrest Warrant

Cumberland City Police arrested 26-year old Christopher Adam Johnston, who had been wanted on an outstanding arrest warrant. Johnston was walking on North Centre Street, when an officer told him to stop; he ran and was apprehended a short time later. A search revealed both CDS and paraphernalia. He was held on a $30,000 bond at the Allegany County Detention Center. The original warrant charged him with the theft of a GPS device from a vehicle in the area of Camden Avenue.

 

Fourth of July Activities Scheduled

The City Of Cumberland will hold its annual Fourth of July celebration, weather permitting. The Potomac Concert Band will begin at 7:30 p.m., at the Park amphitheatre. The fireworks will begin shortly after the concert, at dusk.

 

Man Charged with Burning Down His Home

A Somerset County man is accused of burning down his own house. Forty-seven year old Jay Shaulis has been charged with two counts of arson and criminal mischief. His wife, Cheryl, had moved out of the residence a week ago, and he had told her he would burn the house down.

 

Seven Deaths Now Blamed on Storm

Seven deaths across Maryland have been attributed to last Friday’s storm and the extreme heat of the past several days. Four died as a result of the heat, and three, from the storm. During last Friday’s “super derecho” storm, two people died from falling tree limbs and one man was killed after his boat capsized in the Chesapeake Bay during Friday’s severe weather.

Local News


Repairs Could Take Until Thursday
Power should be back on in the area today or tomorrow, but in some areas of Allegany County, it could be Thursday before utilities are restored. There are still several thousand customers without power in the Allegany, Mineral and Garrett County area. The death toll from the Friday storm has now reached 6 statewide; Governor Martin O’Malley has declared a state of emergency.

Health Department Urges Precautions During Heat Wave
The Allegany County Health Department is urging residents to do what they can to protect themselves and other individuals from extreme heat. Extended periods of high temperatures are not only uncomfortable, but prolonged exposure can lead to heat cramps, heat exhaustion and the most serious-heat stroke. If you have a neighbor, friend or family member who may be especially vulnerable to serious heat related health problems, check on them frequently, and make sure they have air conditioning r other cooling options available to them. Also, bring pets inside, and make sure they, too, have an adequate supply of food and water.

Couple Charged with CDS Possessioin
Westernport resident Joshua Smith and 22-year old Jessica Lynn Smith of Piedmont were arrested by Allegany County Sheriff’s deputies and have been charged with various drug counts. A quantity of  cocaine, crack cocaine, marijuana, pills and drug paraphernalia was recovered, and Joshua Smith was held on $25,000 bond. Jessica Smith was released, pending trial.

Oldtown Man Hospitalized Following Accident; Charges Pending
An Oldtown resident was taken to the hospital, after he was found lying in the road at Lower Town Creek Road in Flintstone. Thirty-year old Michael Dockery is accused of taking a 2004 Jeep without authorization earlier in the day on Sunday. He lost control of the Jeep, traveled fifty feet over an embankment, and the vehicle came to rest on its side. It was destroyed. He was taken to the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center for treatment of non-life threatening injuries. Charges are pending against him.

Portion Of  Oldtown Road to be Closed
A portion of Oldtown Road will be closed, beginning Thursday for about 30 days. The eastbound lane of Oldtown Road, from Grand Avenue to Wempe Drive will be closed to thru traffic. Traffic will be one-way, westbound during the period. Drivers are asked to use caution in the work zone, obey traffic control devices and follow detour routes for westbound travel. Motorists also should expect delays during working hours.

Untaxed Cigarettes Found
About $40,000 in untaxed cigarettes were found in a van that was stopped for a speeding violation on Interstate 68 in Grantsville. About 700 cartons of untaxed cigarettes were being transported from Louisville, Kentucky to New York City. Arrested were 25-year old Mohamed Diol of Columbus, Ohio; 25-year old Cherif Diallo of New York City; and 21-year old Hawa Kanoute, also of New York. The Maryland Comptroller’s Office also assisted with the investigation.

Local News


Homes Remain Without Power Following Storm

Power is still out to thousands of residents in a four state area following Friday evening’s storms. Several “cooling centers” were opened over the weekend, including one at the multi-purpose building at the Allegany County fairgrounds, allowing residents who were without power to cool off with air conditioning and water. During Friday’s storms, two people were killed in Maryland and 53 of 55 counties in West Virginia were without power in some areas. There still hasn’t been a confirmation by the National Weather Service of a tornado, first spotted in the Mineral County area. The storm was said to be on a northeasterly track, and moving toward the Flintstone area.

 

Former Announcer Passes Away  at 52

Mark Workman, known to thousands of listeners as “Mark St. John” passed away Friday at his home in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. Mark had, at one time, been the chief engineer for radio stations WTBO/WKGO/WFRB and TalkRadio 560.  Mark is survived by his mother, sister, nieces and aunts. Private services will be held at the convenience of the family, with burial in the Flatwoods Bowman Cemetery.

 

Woman Sentenced in Theft

Thirty-seven year old Beth Anne Evans has been sentenced to five years in jail, with four suspended, in a conspiracy to commit theft scheme involving the Baltimore Pike Fire Company. After serving a year in jail, she will be placed on five years of supervised probation. Conditions of that probation include restitution and disassociation with the fire company. There were multiple counts of theft in the case; Ms. Evans had served as an officer of the organization from 2008 through 2011. Prosecuting the case was Assistant State’s Attorney Samuel Lane. Representing Ms. Evans was Attorney David Schram.

 

Family Displaced by Fire

Members of the Jay Cameron family are being assisted by other family members, following a fire at their home on the Mount Savage Road. The estimated loss to the structure and its contents has been placed at $8,000. The fire originated in a water heater closet, and the preliminary cause was the malfunction of the water heater. The fire was reported by a passerby just before 6 p.m. on Thursday.

 

Health Department Urges Precautions During Heat Wave

The Allegany County Health Department is urging residents to do what they can to protect themselves and other individuals from extreme heat. Extended periods of high temperatures are not only uncomfortable, but prolonged exposure can lead to heat cramps, heat exhaustion and the most serious-heat stroke. If you have a neighbor, friend or family member who may be especially vulnerable to serious heat related health problems, check on them frequently, and make sure they have air conditioning r other cooling options available to them. Also, bring pets inside, and make sure they, too, have an adequate supply of food and water.

 

Memorial Walk/Run Scheduled for July 7th

As part of the many activities scheduled to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Fort Hill High School this Saturday is the Dotty Harper Appel Memorial Mini-Marathon/Walk, sponsored by Carpenter’s local #1024. The event will be held at Greenway Avenue Stadiu, with registration from 6:45 a.m. to 7:45 a.m., and the event will begin promptly at 8 a.m. Mrs. Appel was a tireless worker, an active member of the Fort Hill Scholarship Fund, a substitute teacher and Co-chair of the 75th Community Event Planning Committee. The event is being held to honor her many contributions and memory.

 

Maryland Taxes Take Effect

Some Maryland residents will pay more income taxes and the so-called “flush tax” went into effect yesterday. The income tax increase on individuals who make more than $100,000 or couples who make more than $150,000 is retroactive to January. The “flush tax” on sewer bills will double from $2.50 per month to $5.

 

Missing Two-Year Old Found Safe

A missing two-year old from Capon Bridge was found safe after about twenty minutes. The child was found off of Beck’s Gap Road near Capon Bridge. He was found in a wooded area, several hundred feet from his residence. As a precaution, he was taken to Hampshire Memorial Hospital  for treatment.

 

Boil Water Advisory in Effect

There is a boil water order in effect for customers in the Scherr, Cabins, Maysville, Dorcas, and Lahmansville areas. If you are a customer of the Petersburg City Water Department, this boil water notice is not in effect. Bring your drinking water to a good boil for about a minute, then turn it off. The Mount Storm Public Service District was not affected.

 

 

Local News-Power Outages


Some Residents Still Without Power

As of Sunday morning, there are still about 7,000 residents who are still without power. As a result of Friday evening’s storms, nearly 7500 customers were without power, along with over 2800in Garrett County and 3700 in Mineral County, West Virginia. Potomac Edison is still working to resolve the problem of power outages and downed trees. The Allegany County Office of Emergency Management says there are “cooling centers” at the local fire departments, which are providing both ice and water to residents. If you are affected by the outages, please call your local fire department, or the Allegany County Office of Emergency Management on a non-emergency number, such as (301)-777-7111.

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