The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Local News

January 29, 2013

Police: Man put corpse in truck

SOMERSET — The body of a missing Friedens man, found in his pickup truck Sunday, had been placed there after he died, state police in Somerset said.

Investigators alleged Tuesday that a Somerset-area man put the body of Frankie Allen Sass, 53, into the truck, wiped off fingerprints and other evidence from the vehicle, and then left the body in the parked truck for several days.

Michael T. Moore, 37, described by police as Sass’ friend, is charged with abuse of a corpse, terroristic threats, tampering with evidence and witness intimidation.

Police said that Moore threatened to “dig a hole” for a man who he forced to help him carry Sass’ body to the vehicle if the man told anyone.

Sass was described by police as a drug user who had a history of wandering off. He went missing for the last time Jan. 23.

An autopsy conducted Mon­day was inconclusive. Somerset County Coroner Wallace Miller said this week that he is awaiting results of toxicology and tissue tests. Miller said he doesn’t suspect foul play.

The time of Sass’ death has not been determined, Miller said Tuesday. That determination was complicated by the fact that the body was in the vehicle for several days before police found it, Miller said.

Trooper Joseph Drzal wrote in a criminal complaint that Moore’s girlfriend told police Sass had showed up at her apartment Jan. 23, and not long after, she realized he was dead.

The girlfriend said she and Moore panicked. They dragged the body down the steps, then called another man to help get the body into the truck.

Police said the woman told them she and Moore drove the body to a nearby location in Somerset, wiped the truck, threw the keys inside and walked back to her apartment.

Moore was lodged in the Somerset County Jail after failing to post $50,000 bond.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Tuesday in Somerset.

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat print edition.

Click here to subscribe to The Tribune-Democrat e-edition.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • Denne, Williams & Stanton Records hearing scheduled

    A Cambria County judge will consider complaints filed by two Johnstown residents seeking documents related to the city’s municipal waste water operation at hearing at the end of this month.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Sen. Bob Casey Casey targets heroin

    The heroin trade has brought addiction, death, violence and theft to Johnstown and other Pennsylvania communities.
    Figuring out how to deal with those issues is difficult for local, state and federal officials.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Drive-in to open with high-tech projector

    Drive-in movie theaters and the term “state of the art” seldom share the same sentence.
    But that will soon be the case for the Silver Drive-In, it’s owner said. The Scalp Avenue site, often marketed as a nostalgic summer night escape, soon will boast a high-end projector capable of displaying the latest and greatest blockbusters in razor sharp high-definition, theater owner Rick Rosco said.

    April 18, 2014

  • Sheetz work underway

    Earthmoving is underway at Richland Town Centre for a nearly 6,500-square-foot Sheetz store.
    And the real estate broker marketing the land says a 3,000-square-foot retail building will be built next door.

    April 18, 2014

  • Smith, Shakir Mosi Police seize heroin, money in Prospect

    Johnstown police reported that several bricks of heroin, along with $4,000 in cash and a handgun, were discovered in the city's Prospect neighborhood around 4 a.m. Friday. An arrest warrant has been issued for the man be­lieved to be the owner or renter of the two homes raided.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Comedy night targets serious problem

    Animal advocates are using comedy to take aim at a serious problem.
    The third annual Funny Fundraiser to benefit the Nardecchia Spay and Neuter Fund will be held at 8 p.m. May 16 at Ace’s, 316 Chestnut St. in the Cambria City section of Johnstown.

    April 18, 2014

  • Local briefs 4/19/2014

    April 18, 2014

  • Early morning police raid in Prospect area leads to arrest warrant

    Johnstown police reported that several bricks of heroin, along with $4,000 in cash and a handgun, were discovered in the city's Prospect neighborhood around 4 a.m. this morning.

    April 18, 2014

  • Home is Where The Tribune-Democrat is Delivered!

    April 18, 2014

  • new councilman Judge fills City Council vacancy

    A lifelong Johnstown resident who has never sought election to public office was named Thursday to fill the vacancy on City Council.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo


Do you think that Jack Williams will get the 270 signatures from city residents needed in order to have a referendum placed on a municipal ballot to have the city's pressure test mandate repealed?

I'm not sure
     View Results
House Ads