Note sends students home
Students at Crestwood High School were dismissed early Thursday due to a threatening note found inside a boy’s rest room.
Police Chief Royce Engler said the school was evacuated at about 1 p.m. after a student found the note. Two police dogs searched the school and found nothing suspicious, Engler said.
Students were sent home at about 2 p.m. Teachers were permitted back inside the school after the search.
Sexual assault alleged
Township police said they arrested Lee Alex Snyder, 23, of Lee Park Avenue, on Tuesday on charges he sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl inside his residence.
Police said information about the alleged assault was developed from Snyder’s place of employment, Community Residential Rehabilitation Center in Nanticoke, where he planned and supervised children’s activities. The center is operated by Children’s Services Center of Wyoming Valley.
Snyder allegedly took the girl to his residence where he had sex with her twice, according to the criminal complaint.
Investigators said they recovered an iPad from the girl’s room in the group home that contained text messages and video chats, the complaint says. Snyder remained jailed Thursday at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $50,000 bail.
MinSec inmate sentenced
An inmate at the MinSec Hazleton Treatment Center who escaped and robbed a bank was sentenced Wednesday in federal court. U.S. District Court Judge Thomas M. Blewitt sentenced Kevin Andre Parks Sr., 41, to five years in federal prison on a bank robbery charge.
Hazleton police said Parks failed to show up for a scheduled appointment that got him released from the MinSec site on Sept. 7. Parks instead robbed the First National Community Bank on West Broad Street, according to court documents. Parks was captured when he was found intoxicated near the Mall at Steamtown in Scranton later on Sept. 7.
Stevens may replace Melvin
State Superior Court President Judge Correale Stevens, a Hazle Township native, is among five judges the Democratic Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee is recommending that Gov. Tom Corbett consider to replace former Supreme Court Justice Joan Orie Melvin, who was convicted of campaign corruption in February.
In an April 17 open letter to Corbett, Sen. Daylin Leach wrote that appointment of a new justice would require two-thirds of the Senate, or 34 votes, to be confirmed. “Given that the current composition of the Senate is 27 Republicans and 23 Democrats, it is clear that only a bipartisan process will result in the smooth and expeditious confirmation of a new justice.”
Leach said that given the political climate in the state and the nation, it would be easy for the process “to quickly deteriorate into partisan bickering and stalemate.” To ease the process, Leach named five Republicans whom he believes Senate Democrats would provide votes sufficient to join the Republican majority and guarantee a confirmation.
Fire displaces families
The American Red Cross Hazleton Chapter is assisting three families who were displaced by a fire Wednesday that heavily damaged an apartment building at 581-583 Peace St.
Nine people were forced out of three apartments, including a dog that was rescued, fire officials said.
The Red Cross is providing lodging, food and clothing for the tenants.
An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the blaze.
Contributions may be sent to the American Red Cross, Northeast Pennsylvania Region, 2200 Avenue A, Bethlehem, PA 18017.