The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

March 21, 2013

Fall trial planned in murder case

EBENSBURG — The trial of an Indiana County man charged in the beating death of a 79-year-old Northern Cambria man in 2010 likely will not begin until fall.

At a pretrial hearing for Sherman Holes, 43, of Cherry Tree, Cambria County Judge Norman Krumenacker told the prosecution and defense to be ready for jury selection Oct. 4.

The trial likely will start as soon as a jury is seated and should take the better part of three days, Krumenacker said.

“Both sides are just getting started,” he said. “They’re going through the process of discovery, sharing information.”

Police allege that Holes killed Arthur “Arch” Henry on the evening of June 30 at Henry’s Eighth Avenue home.

Henry died three days later at Memorial Medical Center in Johnstown. An autopsy showed that he had been struck at least twice with a blunt instrument, causing multiple skull fractures and bleeding in the brain.

State police said the murder weapon was a 29-inch-long wooden plank found hidden behind a washing machine near the front door of Henry’s mobile home.

The murder remained unsolved until August 2012, when a general charge of homicide and assault were filed against Holes.

Prosecutors dropped a robbery charge despite testimony at a November preliminary hearing that Holes was believed to have gone to Henry’s house seeking payment for myrtle, a ground cover he collected for Henry to sell to landscapers.

Holes was arrested after prosecutors used a relatively new method of showing mathematical probabilities linking DNA evidence found on the plank to the DNA of both Holes and the victim.

It is likely that the new approach to DNA evidence will be challenged during the trial.

Krumenacker said he anticipates approving a request by the Cambria County public defender for a DNA expert to refute the prosecution’s evidence.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Halfway house inmates can ease back into society

    Prison life can be a time warp.
    When inmates are locked away – for months, years, decades – society moves forward: Technology evolves, major events occur, pop culture changes. From a personal perspective, families and friends live their lives: weddings, funerals, graduations, births, retirements. All the while, criminals bide their time, existing in a regimented world of cement walls and metal bars.
    Almost all of them eventually rejoin society, though.

    April 19, 2014

  • Crime board took aim at house

    Johnstown’s unemployment rate is around 8 percent.
    One-third of the city’s population lives in poverty.
    Burglaries and assaults significantly increased between 2010 and 2012. There is a thriving illegal trade in heroin and prescription drugs.
    Given those conditions, it can be challenging for Johnstown Community Corrections Center residents to find jobs when living in the facility or to avoid falling back into a criminal lifestyle upon their release.

    April 19, 2014

  • Homicides linked to center

    Three homicides that took place in Johnstown last year involved either a suspect or victim who previously resided in the Community Corrections Center.
    Police Chief Craig Foust confirmed the name of one victim, who spent almost two months in the facility on Washington Street during 2007, a time period verified by the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections.

    April 19, 2014

  • bachota Volunteers helping to spruce up community

    Walls and ceilings inside the Cambria County Library look clean and bright with fresh new coats of paint on them.
    The work was recently done by inmates from the Johnstown Community Corrections Center.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • alanna Hartzok targets income disparity

    Alanna Hartzok described herself as being a conservative progressive.
    The Franklin County resident said she is in favor of conserving environmental resources, education opportunities, Social Security and Medicare, while wanting to progressively address wealth inequality, health care and taxation.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Schools rise to leadership challenge

    Forest Hills and Cambria Heights high school students put the spirit of healthy competition toward a good cause and picked up some lessons in leadership along the way.

    April 19, 2014

  • KATEY LADIKA Student’s photos win awards

    A Forest Hills High School junior has captured several awards in a high school arts and writing contest that has identified greats such as Truman Capote and Andy Warhol.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jim Siehl JIM SIEHL | Music to my ears

    Seldom has $15 produced such a high level of entertainment as it did a few weeks ago when I found myself in the second row just left of center keeping back the tears once again during my third live performance of “Les Miserables.”

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Michele Bender Bye, bye, Easter birdies

    Animals fascinated my mom. Riding the train between Johnstown and Philly, she saw horses, pigs, sheep, cows … a Mattel See ’n Say of farm critters.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bill Eggert Columnist Photo Travelogue of terror features Johnstown area

    A historic week will surround the venerable Silver Drive-In come the beginning of May.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

Poll

Would you like to see the Johnstown Community Corrections Center remain open after its lease runs out on Oct. 11, 2015?

Yes
No
I'm not sure
     View Results
House Ads