Category Archives: Police & Fire

Police Dept. taking back unwanted prescription drugs on Saturday

ELLWOOD CITY, PA — On Saturday, April 26th from 10:00am to 2:00pm, the Ellwood City Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its eighth opportunity in three years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.

Bring your pills for disposal to 525 Lawrence Avenue (rear) on April 26th. (The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills or patches.)  The service is FREE and anonymous – no questions asked.

Last October, American turned in 324 tons (over 647,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at over 4,110 sites operated by the DEA and its thousands of state and local law enforcement partners.  When those results are combined with what was collected in its seven previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 3.4 million pounds – more than 1,700 tons – of pills.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue.  Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse.  Rates of prescription dug abuse int he U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.  Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet.  In addition, Americans are now advised that either unusual methods for disposing of unused medicines – flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash – both pose potential safety and health hazards.

DEA is in the process of approving new regulations that implement the Safe and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010, which amends the Controlled Substances Act to allow an “ultimate user” (that is, a patient or their family member or pet owner) of controlled substance medications to dispose of them by delivering them to entities authorized by the Attorney General to accept them.  The Act also allows the Attorney General to authorize long term care facilities to dispose of their residents’ controlled substances in certain instances.


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POLICE: Mischief, Narcotics, Suspicious Persons & Activities

The following are recent incident reports from the Borough of Ellwood City Police Department.

Mischief to Automobile:
On Friday, April 4th at approximately 9:30pm it was reported unknown actors threw eggs at a vehicle driven by Abigayle Kooler, 34, of Squaw Run Road, Ellwood City.  Kooler was proceeding through the intersection of Line Avenue and Pershing Street.  The eggs caused paint damage tot he right side of the 2012 Ford Focus.

Suspicious Persons:
Officers were dispatched to check into a report of a disabled vehicle on Lawrence Avenue on April 4th at approximately 5:00pm. Upon arriving at the location in front of the Wine and Spirits State Store officers found a male passed out in a Blue Buick with an open bottle of vodka and car keys on the passenger seat, and the vehicle hood up and jumper cables attached to car battery.    The male, Brad Koah, 50, of Ellwood City, was alerted and awoken to be questioned by officers.  The male stated his car would not start and he was waiting for a friend.  The responding officers drove Koah to his residence.

Narcotics, Possession of Marijuana:
A paroling officer spotted a suspicious vehicle parked in the Ewing Park Swimming Pool parking lot Friday, April 4th at approximately 9:35pm.  The officer approached the vehicle, namely at 2012 Kia Sophia, and observed two juvenile females in the front seats and two juvenile males in the rear seats.  All juveniles did not recognize the patrol car or officer and became nervous and shaky when the officer approached the vehicle.  The officer addressed the 14-year-old and 17-year-old sisters in the front seats and was able to detect the odor of marijuana in the vehicle.  All actors denied all questions regarding possession of marijuana.  Upon arrival of additional officers to scene a pipe was observed int he back seat wrapped in paper from a book.  The mother of the juvenile sisters was brought to scene to drive vehicle and actors home.  The two juvenile males were released to a guardian at the scene.

Driving With Suspended License:
On April 4th at approximately 4:05pm, a paroling officer observed a 1990 Toyota Camry driving with an extremely loud exhaust and young toddler in the back seat not secured in a car seat.  Patrol stopped the vehicle in the Rite-Aid parking lot on Fifth Street to address the driver, Connie Lauderbaugh, 50, of Ellwood City.  When asked for license, the driver advised she did not have her license on her.  Officers confirmed through LEOC the driver’s license was suspended due to a DUI charge.

Michael Rogan, 42, of Ellwood City reported a theft of his grand-daughter purse from Ellport Park on April 2nd at approximately 6:00pm.  The stolen black purse had a key chain, $20 in cash, perfume, and excuses for school.  It is unknown who may have stolen the purse.

Suspicious Activity:
An unknown caller placed a call to the Ellwood City Fire Department via the Electric Department after hours line on April 1st at approximately 9:50pm.  The caller stated a male broke into an electric box behind a Loop Street apartment complex.  Arriving officers to the Loop Street addresses found electric tags cut off of meters at 432 and 434 Loop Street.  The electric department was asked to check the status of the meters and report findings to the police department.

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Mayor: Increased traffic enforcement expected

With the arrival of more temperate weather, Mayor Anthony Court has announced increased traffic enforcement, particularly in areas of the borough where youngsters may be playing and enjoying Spring.

Ellwood City Police Officers will be issuing citations for speeding and other traffic infractions throughout the borough but more specifically around Ewing Park and other playground areas.  Motorists are reminded that Spring Fever will be especially acute this year after the many frozen months we have experienced and the kids will be out and about in force.

The Mayor urges all motorists to “SLOW DOWN”, keep alert and watch for our children, especially in and around Ewing Park and other areas where they will be playing.

CONTACT: Ellwood City Police Department
(724) 758-9935 Office

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Home invasion, shootout reported in North Beaver Twp.

A home invasion and ensuing shootout last Friday has led to one arrest, one hospitalization, and one suspect on the run.

According to reports, intruders forced their way into a home on Hillsville-Bessemer Road in North Beaver Township in the early hours last Friday.  The invasion woke the home owner, 25-year-old Brandon McConnell, whom keeps a shotgun for self-protection at the recommendation of a friend.

The attempted burglary led McConnell to exchange gun fire, connecting with one of the intruders.  At one point according to a criminal complaint, another of the intruders found McConnell’s 2-year-old daughter, pointed a gun at her head and threatened to shoot her if McConnell did not put his gun down.

McConnell surrendered his gun, but then was severely beaten with a pistol before the intruders left with about $45.00 in cash.

The wounded intruder, Richard Javens, 43, whom was taken to hospital, has been charged with burglary, robbery, criminal conspiracy to commit robbery, criminal trespass, illegal firearms possession and possession of instruments of crime. Javens had been previously convicted of burglary and drug violations.  Javens was transported to the hospital by Michael Waters, 23, who has been charged with criminal conspiracy to commit a robbery and illegal firearms.

Charges stemmed from searches conducted by police at the hospital where they met Waters and Javens after Waters called the county emergency management center to report he was transporting Javens to Jameson Memorial Hospital.

According to reports, officers found a weapon, latex gloves and bandanna on Waters.  Police also discovered zip ties and two knives in Waters’ possession.

Possibly two other men, one of whom may be Waters, who were reported to have accompanied Javens in the home invasion are still unidentified, uncharged, and remain at large.

According to reports, Waters was arraigned Friday before a district judge and placed in the Lawrence County Jail on $100,000 bond.

The victim was treated for several severe cuts and abrasions at Jameson Memorial Hospital.

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POLICE: Criminal mischief, hit and run, public drunkenness

The following are recent incident reports from the Borough of Ellwood City Police Department.

Hit and Run:
A hit-and-run was reported on Spring Avenue on February 26.  James Donley, 522 Spring Avenue, reported his 1998 Dodge Ram truck was struck by a unreported unit causing damage to the driver mirror and wheel well.  Donley’s vehicle was parked on the west side of the 500 block of Spring Avenue when it was struck.  Donley believes a semi-truck hit his vehicle.

Criminal Mischief:
Two, separate accounts of criminal mischief were reported on March 1.  The first reported incident occured to a property on 1st Avenue in Ellwood City where the resident reported to have her house egged at approximately 11:00pm.  The second incident was reported from Hazel Avenue in Ellwood City where a resident reported someone is taking solar lights out of their yard and smashing them on the road.  The resident reported this is the second time it has happened.

At approximately 12:52am on March 2nd officers were dispatched to the front parking lot of Shelby Bar, located on Fountain Avenue, Ellwood City.  Michael Greco, 47, New Castle, PA, stated that between 11:00pm and 12:50am someone slashed all 4 tires of his 2005 Dodge Dakota truck.

Public Drunkenness:
Chris Schulthers, 21, of 516 Spring Ave., Ellwood City, was cited for Public Drunkenness and Criminal Mischief in the early hours of March 1st.  Police reported to 813 First Avenue at approximate 4:18am where they found Schulthers passed out on the porch.  Police detected a strong odor of alcohol and could not get the suspect to awake or move.  Police also reported a broken porch railing.  The suspect may have fell, breaking the railing.  Police contacted ambulance services whom moved Schulthers to the Ellwood City Hospital.  The suspects mother was contacted to collect her son at the hospital.

Escape, Criminal Mischief:
According to reports, Malinda Maria Greene, 42, of 104 13th St., Ellwood City, was charged with escape and criminal mischief earlier this week.  According to reports, Lawrence County Probation Department received an alert on February 25 that Greene had removed her ankle monitor without permission from the office.  Greene was serving five years probation on a 2013 conviction on retail theft during her monitoring.  When police contacted Greene, she told officials that she would report in person in the next half-hour, but one hour later, county deputies obtained a warrant for Greene’s arrest and she was taken into custody on Tuesday.  The criminal mischief charges stem from a report from the Lawrence County Sheriff’s office that the ankle monitoring device was damaged.

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POLICE: Megan’s Law offender faces seven charges

Photo courtesy of the Megan's Law website

Photo courtesy of the Megan’s Law website

An Ellwood City man was arrested on Jan. 17 after he allegedly coerced a 15-year-old girl into having sex with him by way of blackmail.

Jason Edward Lambright, 23, residence currently undefined, faces seven charges including rape, aggravated indecent assault, and corruption of a minor.

According to the report, police were advised to speak with a 15-year-old girl and her mother in reference to a sexual assault.  The girl advised officers that in February 2013, she sent several naked photos of herself to a Facebook account thought to be controlled by a New Castle man.

She explained that Lambright, a registered sex offender, contacted her and admitted that the account was his, and that he would not tell her mother about the photos if she had sex with him.  She refused to accept the deal, thus Lambright continued to threaten her.  Then, he showed up at her Ellwood City home and forcibly engaged her in sexual intercourse.   The victim explained that she had never had sex before, nor has she since.

She kept the incident a secret and believed it was over until Lambright contacted her again on Jan. 5.  He told her via text message that she needed to keep the deal with him and give him what he wants, or else he would create a Facebook page and send the nude photos to her mother.  At this point, the girl changed her phone number to keep Lambright from contacting her, and informed her mother of the incident.

After involving the police in the matter, the Beaver County district attorney’s office and Beaver County Children and Youth Services interviewed the girl on Jan. 17.  During the interview, her mother, who sat in, explained that Lambright contacted her and asked for money on Jan. 15.  Thus, out of frustration, she confronted him about the allegations though a series of text messages.  Lambright denied the accusations, but made several comments back explaining that he refused to go back to prison and that he would kill himself if she reported the incident.

The interview confirmed that the phone number used in the conversation between the victim’s mother and Lambright was the same one used to text the victim 95 times on Jan. 5 from 5:44 p.m. to 10:12 p.m.

Lambright was also convicted of corruption of minors in 2010.  And, in September 2013, he failed to comply with the parameters of Pennsylvania’s Megan’s Law by not informing police that he changed addresses.

The accused stood before Judge Jerry Cartwight, Jr. in a preliminary hearing on Jan. 27, and is currently being held at Beaver County Prison on $100,000 bail.

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COURT: DUI, False Reports, Possession

DUI, Reckless Driving

A court date was set for a Fombell man who drove the wrong way down a one-way street and struck a pedestrian while under the influence of alcohol on Jan. 7.

Daniel James Cummins, 62, of 102 Greenwood Rd. in Fombell was charged with DUI and reckless driving.

According to the report, police were dispatched to investigate a motor vehicle accident  at 6:02 p.m. at the intersection of Seventh Street and Bell Avenue near the Ellwood City Post Office.  Officers observed an injured white male lying at the edge of the intersection near the southeast corner, and identified him as James Emigh, Jr.

The victim claimed that a Chevrolet Blazer struck him while he was crossing the street.  The officers noticed a silver 1996 Chevrolet Blazer parked on the west berm of Seventh Street with the owner, Cummins, inside.  Upon speaking to the defendant, one of the officers immediately detected alcohol on his breath and that he was shaking, as well as unsteady on his feet.  Cummins admitted that he hit the victim while driving after he stepped in front of the vehicle.

The officers demonstrated several field sobriety tests which revealed severe loss of motor control.  The defendant was arrested and transported to Ellwood City Hospital, where he consented to a blood alcohol test.  The test showed his blood alcohol levels at .097%.

The accident investigation disclosed that Cummins was driving North on Seventh Street-the wrong way-when he struck the pedestrian.  A background report also showed that this was his second offense within a 10-year period.

Information on the extent of the victim’s injuries is not available at this time.

Cummins is scheduled to appear before Judge Jerry Cartwright, Jr. on Feb. 18, 2014 at 9:30 a.m.

False Reports – Reported an offense that did not occur, Disorderly Conduct Hazardous Physical Offense

An Ellwood City woman will appear in court after telling police her car, involved in a hit-and-run crash, was stolen.

Tanya Renee Dimaggio, 32, of 216 14th St. in Wayne Township was charged with making false reports to law enforcement and disorderly conduct.

According to the report, an officer was called to investigate a stolen vehicle claim from 216 14th St. on Jan. 6 at 3:18 p.m.  Prior to arriving at the residence, the officer was made aware that the aforementioned vehicle-a white 1999 Chevrolet Malibu sedan-was involved in a hit-and-run accident at 1:27 a.m. that same day.  The owner, Dimaggio, reported the vehicle stolen and denied knowing who took the vehicle as well as who was driving it when it crashed.

Police arrived at Dimaggio’s residence at 4:21 p.m. and spoke with her about the incident.  She explained that her vehicle was taken from the street in front of her house when she was asleep.

The defendant then spoke with police on Jan. 7, and admitted to wrecking the vehicle while attempting to turn west onto Fifth Street from Lawrence Avenue.  She lost control and stuck a tree on the sidewalk, then fled the scene on foot with an unidentified person.

Dimaggio is scheduled to appear before Judge Jerry Cartwright, Jr. on Feb. 18 at 9:30 a.m.

Possession of a Controlled Substance, Use/Possession of Drug Paraphernalia

An Ellwood City man will appear in court on Feb. 18 at 9:30 a.m. to face charges stemming from an incident in September.

Chad Eric Mesko, 25, of 424 Franklin Ave., Apt. 3, was arrested on Sept. 9, 2013 for possession of a controlled substance and use/possession of drug paraphernalia.

According to the report, officers were releasing Brandon Kibler, 21, of 147 McKim Way, to his mother and friends at 10:06 a.m. after a previous retail theft occurred at Dollar General.  They were waiting for Kibler in a van parked at a meter on Sixth Street.  Officers walked over to the vehicle and recognized Mesko, who reportedly fled the earlier scene with drugs prior to the patrol’s arrival.

Officers asked the defendant if they could search both him and the vehicle, to which he replied, “Sure, go ahead and check me.”  They found a plastic container filled with used razor blades along with a plastic bottle in his possession.  Mesko advised police that the bottle contained “H,” and that the razor blades were used to cut it.

One gram of heroin, confirmed by a field test, was seized from Mesko.  Police also found that his driver’s license was under suspension.

The defendant was processed and released pending summons.  He will appear before Judge Jerry Cartwright, Jr.

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Young girl treated for minor injuries in school bus mishap

An eight-year-old Ellwood City student was dragged approximately one block by a school bus atThursday afternoon.

According to the report, at around 3:45 p.m. bus driver Christine Lee Sabatino, 46, of Ellwood City, closed the doors on the girl’s backpack after she exited the bus at the intersection of Blue Jay Avenue and Raymond Street in Wurtemberg Heights.

The bus continued south onto Raymond St. towards Lyndhurst Avenue with the girl still caught in the doors.  Sabatino saw the girl when she arrived at the corner of Lyndhurst Avenue and stopped the vehicle.

The student sustained minor injuries that were treated on the scene.

The police are continuing to investigate the matter.

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POLICE: Blotter report from Jan. 11 to 14


A possible burglary nearly occurred at 1602 Jockey Moore Rd. on Saturday morning.

According to the report, an unknown actor attempted to get into the home through the back door at approximately 6:47 a.m.  The caller hid in her room during the attempted break-in, thus she could not identify the actor.

No further information is available at this time.


A complaint was filed with Ellwood City police Sunday afternoon after a man witness a group of unknown actors cutting down trees on his property.

According to the report, the man saw the actors at his property line on Walnut Dr. behind Loop St.  When the property owner spotted them, they walked back up a path towards Loop St., and he lost sight of them.  The yard contains clear “No Trespassing” signs.

Police will continue to investigate the incident.


A car vandalism was reported to Ellwood City police Tuesday afternoon.

According to the report, the victim explained that someone slashed a tire on his car overnight between Jan.13 and 14.  He discovered that the rear passenger side tire on his Saturn was slashed.  The car was parked at 119 Martin Ave. in Ellport at the time.

Police are continuing to investigate the vandalism.

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Fire call at Hartman Monday night

Last night at 8:29 p.m., the Ellwood City Fire Department responded to a call at Hartman Elementary School on Fourth St.

Thirteen responders, including twelve volunteer firefighters, arrived at the scene in five fire trucks to investigate smoke coming from the inside of the building.

Fireman and driver Dave Tritt explained that an electrical motor in the basement of the structure burned up, which created a significant amount of smoke in the building.

Firefighters had the situation under control by 9:30 p.m.  No injuries were reported.

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