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Last updated: April 21. 2014 11:44PM - 2615 Views
By - elewis@timesleader.com - (570) 991-6116



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BEAR CREEK TWP. — A White Haven man was arraigned Monday on charges he punched a woman and pushed her out of a vehicle on state Route 115 on Sunday.


Nicholas Edward Niemenski, 43, of Fern Ridge Road, was charged with simple assault, reckless endangerment and harassment. He was arraigned by District Judge Joseph Carmody in West Pittston and released on $10,000 unsecured bail.


According to the criminal complaint:


State police at Wyoming said Amy Lunch was lying unresponsive on the shoulder of Route 115 near the Bear Creek Community Charter School at about 10:50 p.m. Paramedics took Lynch to Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center in Plains Township, where she told troopers she was with Niemenski at the Leisure Tavern in Wilkes-Barre and they were traveling home.


While in the car, Lynch said, they argued and Niemenski punched her head and pulled her hair. He pulled over and pushed her out the passenger side door before driving away, the complaint says.


A preliminary hearing is scheduled on April 30 before District Judge Michael Dotzel in Wilkes-Barre Township.


WILKES-BARRE — An inmate at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility was arraigned Monday on an escape charge.


David Paul Foote, 36, address unknown, was charged with escape when he ran away from the county prison while taking garbage to a dumpster on Sept. 24, according to the criminal complaint.


Foote was in prison for failure to pay child support, court records say. He was back in jail on Monday for lack of $10,000 bail.


A preliminary hearing is scheduled on May 1 before District Judge Martin Kane in Wilkes-Barre.


WILKES-BARRE — A city man was arraigned Monday on charges he assaulted a woman at his residence on McLean Street.


Bill F. Erdman, 34, of McLean Street, was charged with simple assault, terroristic threats and harassment. He was jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $10,000 bail after he was arraigned by District Judge Joseph Carmody in West Pittston.


City police allege Erdman assaulted Sonji Ryan in his apartment and threatened to kill her, Ryan’s daughter and her grandson, according to the criminal complaint.


A preliminary hearing is scheduled on April 29 before District Judge Rick Cronauer in Wilkes-Barre.


HAZLE TWP. — State police at Hazleton said a bank card belonging to Hazle Township Fire & Rescue Company was used to make two fraudulent purchases totaling $233 at a Walmart Supercenter and an Ihop in Maryland.


FOSTER TWP. — A Blakeslee man was injured when he lost control of his 2007 Subaru Legacy on Pond Creek Road on Saturday.


State police at Hazleton said Steven J. Destefano, 26, was traveling north on Pond Creek Road at a high rate of speed when he failed to turn onto state Route 940 at about 7:25 p.m.


Destefano’s vehicle crossed into on-coming traffic for about 220 feet and failed to negotiate a curve, continuing along the shoulder of the road before striking a guard wire attached to a utility pole and two trees, state police said.


State police said the crash caused a brush fire next to the pole and caused electrical service to be interrupted.


Destefano was transported to Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center for injuries to his torso, state police said.


HAZLE TWP. — David Price and Anna Sharpe separately reported to state police at Hazleton that someone made unauthorized charges in various locations in New York.


HANOVER TWP. — State police Bureau of Liquor Control Enforcement reported the following:


• Winners, 401 Coal St., Wilkes-Barre, was recently cited with failing to return restaurant liquor license and wholesale liquor purchase permit cards to the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board when it had not been in operation for 15 consecutive days from March to June 2013, and from June 2013 to March 2014.


• Slocum Rod and Gun Club, 745 North St., Luzerne, was recently cited with failure to return its club liquor license and wholesale liquor purchase permit cards to the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board when it had not been in operation for 15 consecutive days from Feb. 27 to March 13.


HAZLETON — City police reported the following:


• A woman reported Sunday that someone kicked in the front door of her residence in the 800 block of East Seventh Street while she was away. It was not known if any items were stolen.


• Police said they investigated a fight involving a large crowd in the area of 51 E. Juniper St. at about 7:20 p.m. Sunday. No additional information was released.


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