The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

State News

May 10, 2014

State briefs 5/11/2014

Man, car sought in Laurel Mountain death

LAUREL MOUNTAIN – State police have been searching for a man and a vehicle missing from a Westmoreland County residence where a woman was found slain.

The county coroner’s office has scheduled an autopsy for today, though the death of 52-year-old Angela Cavalero already is called a possible homicide.

Investigators aren’t saying why they believe that, but say she was found with unspecified “fatal injuries” at a residence in Laurel Mountain about 10 p.m. Friday.

A man who lived in the house hasn’t been located, but police believe he may be driving a dark blue 1995 Mercury Grand Marquis. The car has numerous religious bumper stickers and Pennsylvania license plate JGT7999.

Police so far are not naming the man. They say he’s a person of interest, but should be considered dangerous.

Husband runs over wife with boat trailer

BUFFALO MILLS – State police said a central Pennsylvania woman is dead after her husband accidentally ran over her with a pontoon boat trailer he was pulling with his pickup truck.

Troopers said the incident happened early Saturday in Juniata Township, Huntingdon County.

They’re not releasing her husband’s name, but police said the dead woman is 53-year-old Jill Skethway.

Police said the couple was trying to keep water from gathering in the boat during heavy rains. As Skethway’s husband tried to move the boat, he was unaware that she had crawled underneath to avoid the rain herself.

No alcohol or drugs were involved, police said.

Jury convicts stepdad of less serious charge  

UNIONTOWN – A man has been convicted of reckless endangerment for driving his stepson’s motorcycle off the road but acquitted of the more serious charge of aggravated assault.

A Fayette County jury reached the decision Friday in the case of 46-year-old Timothy Rockwell. He was charged in the April 2012 crash that injured 37-year-old Alan Rockwell Jr. of Uniontown.

During the trial, the judge dismissed a charge of attempted homicide for lack of evidence.

The defendant is the victim’s stepfather but was first his uncle. The defendant married Alan Rockwell’s mother after she divorced the defendant’s brother.

When the crash occurred, the defendant was having an affair with Alan Rockwell’s wife.

Murder suspect freed after 2 years in jail

PHILADELPHIA – A man jailed for more than two years on charges he killed the owner of a check-cashing store during a robbery will soon be freed after prosecutors agreed that his alibi checked out.

Philadelphia prosecutors dropped the capital murder charges Friday against Eric Locke, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported

Locke had been awaiting trial on charges he robbed and shot 53-year-old Joel Blumer, of Holland, Bucks County, on March 3, 2012. Blumer, a married father of two, was opening his B&R Check Cashing store in Philadelphia just before 9 a.m.

Police took the word of a wit­ness who later testified at a pre­liminary hearing that he heard a gunshot and saw Locke run past, then return and pick up a bag Blumer had.

But Locke insisted he was in Williamsport visiting his children’s mother that morning.

Now, Assistant District Attorney Jude Conroy said the phone records and a witness who drove Locke 180 miles to Philadelphia later that day support Locke’s claims.

The charges have been dropped without prejudice, meaning prosecutors can recharge Locke if other evidences emerges linking him to the crime.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
State News
  • TSA finds gun, ammo in Pittsburgh airport carry-on

    The Transportation Security Administration says it found a pistol and ammunition in man’s carry-on bag as he passed through security at Pittsburgh International Airport.

    July 28, 2014

  • Youth pastor fired, jailed after teen-sex charges

    A youth pastor has been fired by a western Pennsylvania church and jailed on charges he performed sex acts with a 15-year-old girl in their church building.

    July 28, 2014

  • Luksik, Peg Independent hopefuls may widen gubernatorial field

    Just when Pennsylvania voters were getting used to the idea of a gubernatorial election showdown between Republican incumbent Tom Corbett and Democratic challenger Tom Wolf, other hopefuls may soon be joining the fray. Johnstown resident Peg Luksik, who twice ran for governor as the Constitutional Party nominee, knows what it's like.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Scaife remembered for strong convictions

    At a weekend memorial service, publisher Richard Mellon Scaife was remembered by the archbishop of Washington as someone who had the courage to stand “for things that mattered.”

    July 27, 2014

  • DePasquale Auditor: More Marcellus Shale well inspectors needed

    The state’s 83 well inspectors face a daunting enough challenge keeping tabs on 120,000 active oil and gas wells that have been drilled over the past century.
    But boom times in the Marcellus Shale are bringing online thousands more wells that use a complicated process requiring more careful oversight.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Strained relationship between Corbett, Legislature not new

    Poking and prodding the Legislature to act on pension reform, Gov. Tom Corbett urged lawmakers to shorten their summer break and come back to the Capitol early.
    It’s a modest victory. The House will return to session Aug. 4, instead of the middle of September. And there’s little hint that lawmakers intend to knock themselves out trying to satisfy the governor.

    July 26, 2014

  • Wolf: Wealthy should pay more to cut school taxes

    Democratic gubernatorial candidate Tom Wolf would make a centerpiece of his first budget proposal an increase in income taxes on Pennsylvania’s higher-earners to help expand the state’s share of public education funding in exchange for a dollar-for-dollar reduction in local property taxes levied by school boards.

    July 26, 2014

  • Penn State Abuse 27 Son: Joe Paterno afraid of wrongly accusing Sandusky

    Former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno told his son the day after his firing that he hadn’t informed the coaching staff about allegations Jerry Sandusky may be a child molester because he was unsure whether they were true, Jay Paterno writes in a new book.

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos

  • State in Brief | Two guns found at alleged hospital shooter's home

    Authorities found two more guns at the home of a man suspected of fatally shooting his caseworker and grazing his psychiatrist in suburban Philadelphia before the doctor pulled out his own weapon and fired back.

    July 26, 2014

  • Woman raising stink about people using backyard near turnpike as a rest stop

    A Pennsylvania woman says she can see drivers who pull off the side of a highway relieving themselves near her backyard, and state police have been asked to increase patrols.

    July 23, 2014


What is the biggest key to reducing gun violence in Johnstown?

Tackling the area's drug problem.
Controlling folks moving into city housing.
Monitoring folks in treatment centers and halfway houses.
Tougher sentencing by the court system.
More police on the streets.

     View Results
Order Photos

Photo Slideshow

House Ads