ANN;S SHUT DOWN AND SOLD

The Lycoming County District Attorney held a press conference yesterday to announce the closing of a nuisance bar in the city of Williamsport.  From June of 2014 through September of 2015, Williamsport police were called to Ann’s Tavern at 503 Rose Street in the city for 15 incidents including firearms violations, stabbings, robbery, theft and public brawling.  Yesterday District Attorney Eric Lindhardt reported that the DA’s office and city has worked with its owners to shut the place down.  The property and liquor license were sold in an auction on January 23rd.  It’s the third bar in the city to be recently shut down as nuisance bars. The other two were the Fifth Avenue Tavern and the Port Tavern.

SEARCH FOR MISSING WOMAN CONTINUES

The investigation continues into a Montoursville Area woman’s disappearance but has not turned her up yet.  The Williamsport Sun Gazette reports this morning that State Police have obtained a vial of Michelle Inch’s blood and have sent it away to see if it matches up with blood found on the outside of Inch’s car found in the Canton area the day after she was reported disappeared.  Meanwhile, her boyfriend, Michael Houseweart and another man, Matthew Vroman remain jailed on attempted homicide charges and other counts stemming from last Wednesday’s fire at Inch’s parents’ house. They reportedly are not talking as to Michelle Inch’s whereabouts. 

FIRE IN HUGHESVILLE DISPLACES THREE

Fire in Hughesville yesterday leaves three persons displaced.  Firefighters from Hughesville, Picture Rocks, Muncy Area, Pennsdale and Montoursville were called to the home of Eric and Joanne Dieterle and their son around 10:20 yesterday morning at 108 N. Third Street in Hughesville. When they arrived, they found flames shooting from the roof.  They were able to extinguish the fire within 20 minutes.  No one was hurt, a damage estimate was not released and the cause of that Hughesville fire remains under investigation.

TWO NEW COPS HIRED

In with the new. Williamsport City Council last night approved the hiring of two new city police officers.  They are 23 year old Christopher Salisbury of Montoursville and 23 year old Nicholas Carrita of Loyalsock.  The two will begin police academy training on Monday. Once the two are on the street, the compliment of city police officers will be at 52.  The initial cost to hire the two will be $140,000 dollars yearly.  Meanwhile, council also heard from two of three officers who recently retired from the force. They are Captain Michael Orwig, Lt. Arnold Duck and Patrolman Jimmie Rogers.

CHEATING ALLEGED AT STAT POLICE ACADEMY

Reports out of the state police academy in Harrisburg say that a cheating probe is underway there.  It’s believed that cheating occurred at the academy, though officials are not saying much as to the manner of cheating.  Cadets there are subject to a battery of written tests during the more than six months of training and it’s not known if any cadets in one of two current academy classes or any state troopers have been disciplined or dismissed as part of the probe.

MORE MONEY FOR PRE-K PROGRAMS

More bits and pieces coming out of Harrisburg as to what the governor will be seeking in his 2016-2017 fiscal year budget proposal.  It’s been reported that the governor will seek a $60 million dollar boost to state subsidized pre-kindergarten programs. If approved the money would increase the state’s current pre-kindergarten subsidy by one-third.  A $30 million dollar increase went into effect this year, though billions of dollars of state money stay in limbo due to the state’s budget impasse. 

STRUCTURAL PROBLEMS AT AREA SCHOOL

As the battle continues over whether or not to restart a $36 million dollar renovation and rebuilding project at the Montoursville High School, the board has not found out that the school has been deemed to have structural problems. An inspection by building codes officials in December has turned up cracks and fatigue in the entry lobby and the hallway floor systems, as well as repairs which need to be made to the roof.  If the problems are not corrected, the district could face fines and even condemnation of the school building.

JUVENILE SHELTER CARE MOVES TO TIOGA COUNTY

In the wake of the December shutdown of a shelter care facility for delinquent and dependent juveniles, Lycoming County Commissioners yesterday approved an agreement with Tioga County’s shelter.  The local shelter was shut down due to the cost being too high to maintain compared to how few juveniles were referred there. The agreement with Tioga County will cost the Lycoming County juvenile probation department a daily rate of $209 per person and youth will be sent there on an as needed basis.

DUI ENFORCEMENT

It’s Mardi Gras weekend in the city of Williamsport as well as Superbowl weekend.  Area and state police have already reported that they will ramp up DUI patrols in and outside of the city this weekend.  Police say they will be looking for those who are driving under the influence and will strictly enforce the .08 percent blood alcohol limit. You are reminded if you are going out over the weekend to designate a driver, or take a cab.