Kidnap suspect indicted
CLARION – A Clarion County man accused of kidnapping a 13-year-old girl and taking her to South Dakota has been indicted by a federal grand jury, authorities said.
U.S. Attorney David Hickton said Tuesday that a grand jury in Pittsburgh had indicted 31-year-old Joshua Baker, of Leeper, on federal counts of interstate transportation of a minor for the purpose of engaging in unlawful sexual activity and travel with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct.
Clarion County District Attorney Mark Aaron on Monday announced state charges of kidnapping a minor and interfering with custody, alleging Baker left with the girl in the middle of the night March 28. Authorities said the kidnapping charge applies because of the girl’s age, whether or not she consented to go with Baker. Aaron alleged at a news conference Monday that Baker was running away from his wife and was in a relationship with the girl.
Online court records don’t list an attorney for Baker, who was jailed in South Dakota on the charges filed in Clarion County. Baker is the cousin of the girl’s mother’s fiancee, Aaron said.
Baker was arrested in Martin, S.D., on Saturday, two days after a store clerk saw Baker and the girl and called police.
Trade mission yields new plant
HARRISBURG – An international manufacturer of hydraulic cylinders plans to open a facility in Franklin County by the end of this year, Gov. Tom Corbett said Tuesday from Brazil as he leads a South American trade mission.
The planned Wipro Infrastructure Engineering plant in Chambersburg will create 74 local jobs and generate $10 million in capital investment over a decade, Corbett and officials involved in the project said in a telephone conference from Sao Paulo with Pennsylvania reporters.
India-based Wipro is a major supplier of Volvo Construction Equipment, which officials said has a strong presence in Brazil and whose only North American production facility is located in Shippensburg.
Wipro already has 13 facilities worldwide.
ITSI-Biosciences of Johnstown is one of the companies taking part in the mission.
Dead priest named in allegations
WILKINSBURG – The Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh has alerted parishioners in one suburban parish of sex abuse allegations against a now-dead priest.
The diocese sent the letter to members of St. James Church in Wilkinsburg on Friday, after receiving an allegation last month from the brother of a man – who is also now dead – who claimed he had been abused by the Rev. John Wellinger.
Wellinger was the assistant pastor of the church from 1981 to 1985 when the alleged abuse took place. The diocese alerted parishioners so anyone else who may have been abused by Wellinger at that parish can contact diocesan or statewide abuse hotlines and receive counseling and other help.
Wellinger, who died two years ago, was named as a perpetrator in a lawsuit the diocese settled for $1.25 million in 2007 on behalf of 32 victims.
That lawsuit didn’t involve the now-dead victim, but another person who claimed they were abused in 1989 when Wellinger served at another parish, Holy Spirit, in West Mifflin, the Rev. Ronald Lengwin, a diocesan spokesman said. That allegation didn’t result in criminal charges, however, and wasn’t made until 1995.
Three trucks collide
HARRISVILLE – A crash involving two tractor-trailers and a dump truck closed a rural Butler County highway for several hours.
State police from Butler said the crash happened about 8:30 a.m. Tuesday on Route 8 near Harrisville.
Police have not said who owned the trucks, but said the crash occurred when a tractor-trailer jackknifed when its driver tried to stop for a motorist making a turn, and hit a logging truck.
A dump truck traveling behind the logging truck then smashed into it.
Police said the tractor-trailer driver was taken from the scene to a hospital.
Kidnap suspect indicted
- State News
Cops: Worker took bribes for driver’s licenses
A former state driver’s license examiner has been charged with taking bribes from immigrants – mostly from the Asian country of Bhutan – in exchange for licenses for which they didn’t pass driving tests.
Sandusky lawyer sued over $25,000 credit card debt
The ex-defense attorney for former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky is now facing legal troubles himself.
Pa. police seek man accused in machete swinging
Police in south-central Pennsylvania are searching for a machete-swinging man who allegedly threatened to cut off the head of another man with whom he was arguing.
Pa. man gets up to 10 years for sex with teen
A northeasternern Pennsylvania man is going to prison after admitting to carrying on a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old girl.
Indiana County man to trial on charges he shot ex near kids
An Indiana County man has ordered to stand trial on charges he entered his ex-girlfriend’s home and shot her nine times while she was in bed watching television with her 15-year-old daughter, while three other siblings were at home.
Cops: Homeless man stabbed Pa. couple who fed him
A homeless man has been jailed on charges that he stabbed the western Pennsylvania couple who took him in with a kitchen knife after an argument about dirty dishes.
Pittsburgh cops see 2 pizza robberies in 1 minute
In a city recently plagued by food delivery robberies, Pittsburgh police are dealing with something new: two pizza-related robberies in the same minute.
Police: Panhandler claimed to be state trooper
Police say a drunken panhandler charged with harassing the customers of a Westmoreland County business falsely claimed to be a state trooper – but was found out when he claimed to work at a nonexistent barracks.
Prosecutor wonders how many of man's 5 DUIs should count as "first offenses"
A Blair County prosecutor must decide how many of a man’s five drunken-driving arrests in the past 14 months count as “first” offenses.
18-year-old girl attacked by bear while deer hunting
A black bear attacked a teenager in central Pennsylvania as she hunted deer on a family farm, state police said Tuesday.
- More State News Headlines
- Cops: Worker took bribes for driver’s licenses