Last updated: February 20. 2013 1:55AM - 723 Views

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BUTLER TWP. – Township police reported responding to the following incidents:

• Police cited Pilar Lacruz-Monroe, 41, of Anne Street, Mountain Top, with public drunkenness following an incident at 8:40 p.m. Sunday in Beech Mountain Lakes.

• Police said they charged Eric Smith, 20, of Dover, Del., with violating a township ordinance banning drugs and drug paraphernalia after he was allegedly found trying to smuggle marijuana into the Keystone Job Corp. Center at approximately 6 p.m. Monday. The Luzerne County Sheriff's Department and Hazleton police assisted in the arrest.

• Police said someone tried to force entry into a residence on Lions Drive at approximately 8:30 p.m. Monday.

• Police said someone forced entry into a residence on the 100 block of Sunset Drive through a window and stole silver jewelry and U.S. savings bonds sometime between 12:45 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Monday.

• Two people were taken to a hospital after a crash on South Hunter Highway at approximately 1:20 p.m. Tuesday.

Police said a vehicle driven by Lois Olsen, 86, of Hazle Township, pulled out in front of a vehicle driven by Jared Ceol, 18, of Drums, while Olsen was exiting the National Penn Bank parking lot.

Olson had to be extricated from her vehicle by Valley Regional Fire Department, and both victims were taken to Hazleton General Hospital, police said.

• A bald eagle statue that had been part of a veterans' memorial in the Butler Township Community Park was reported stolen Tuesday.

• Police said a vehicle struck a pillar at the Holiday Inn Express in the early morning hours Tuesday, causing moderate damage to the pillar.

• Police said Nicholas Hanes, 23, of Hatfield, was not injured when he lost control of his vehicle while traveling north on South Hunter Highway near the intersection with Foothills Drive, and traveled across the highway, down an embankment and into the parking lot of a medical office building on Foothill Drive shortly before 5 a.m. Thursday.

• Police said a small package was reported stolen from a mailbox on West Butler Drive on Wednesday.

• Police said they arrested Eric Baker, 27, of Walnut Street, Freeland, and Alyssa Welsh, 25, of Christman Road, Drums, on theft charges Wednesday. Police alleged the two stole more than $2,000 worth of jewelry from a residence in the 200 block of West Butler Drive and exchanged the jewelry for $300 at a pawn shop on Church Street, Hazle Township, using the cash to purchase clothing and heroin.

Baker and Welsh were arraigned on felony charges of theft, criminal conspiracy of theft and receiving stolen property before District Judge Daniel O'Donnell, Sugarloaf Township, and released on their own recognizance. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 9 a.m. Monday before O'Donnell.

• Police in late December filed felony DUI and other charges against Giovanni Mazzola, 23, of Rock Shore Drive, Drums, in connection with a crash at 2:40 a.m. June 9.

Police said Mazzola was driving along North Hunter Highway near Beech Mountain Lakes at approximately 83 mph in a 45 mph zone when he lost control of his vehicle and rolled it several times into a structure. Police said Mazzola and a passenger, Justin Kay, 23, of Drums, were seriously injured and Mazzola was taken to Scranton Community Medical Center by medical helicopter.

Blood tests obtained through a search warrant concluded Mazzola's blood alcohol content was .178 percent and he had marijuana in his system, according to police. The legal blood alcohol limit for drivers in Pennsylvania is .08 percent.

Mazzola was charged Dec. 21 with felony counts of aggravated assault by vehicle while driving under the influence and aggravated assault by vehicle. He was additionally charged with misdemeanor counts of DUI with a blood alcohol content of more than .16, DUI: general impairment and driving under the influence of a controlled substance as well as summary traffic charges.

A preliminary arraignment and hearing is scheduled for Jan. 28 before District Judge Daniel O'Donnell, Sugarloaf Township.

• Police filed DUI charges against Brandon Van Blargan, 20, of Drums, Dec. 21 in connection with a Nov. 10 traffic stop.

Police said they responded around 11:20 p.m. to a report of a prowler in a vehicle on St. John's Road and found a vehicle matching the description leaving the area at a high rate of speed.

Police said they stopped the driver, Van Blargan, and determined he was under the influence. A subsequent analysis found that Van Blargan's blood alcohol content was .062 percent and that he had marijuana in his system, according to police. In Pennsylvania, a driver under 21 can be charged with DUI if their blood alcohol content is greater than .02 percent.

Van Blargan was charged with misdemeanor counts of DUI: minor, driving under the influence of a controlled substance and DUI: combination of alcohol and drugs.

A preliminary arraignment and hearing is scheduled for Jan. 28 before District Judge Daniel O'Donnell, Sugarloaf Township.

HAZLE TWP. – A driver struck a parked school bus with students on board at 3:30 p.m. Friday on Route 309 northbound near 34th Street, according to state police.

State police said the bus was dropping off a student at an approved bus stop and the bus's eight-way warning light system was active at the time of the crash. A 2002 Chevrolet Impala driven by Maxwell Howe, 21, of West Hazleton, struck and became lodged beneath the rear of the bus, state police said.

State police said none of the 11 students on board the bus during the crash was injured.

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