Regional News from WTAJ
LEWISTOWN, MIFFLIN COUNTY - Seven years ago, a local man and woman were murdered while they slept. And for seven years, both of their families have pushed for justice in the case.
Sherry Jo Leonard and Jason Specht were attacked in Specht's Lewistown area mobile home. Police haven't made an arrest, though the Mifflin County District Attorney said they have a person of interest in the case.
Leonard’s family says the wheels of justice are moving much too slowly for them.
"Mason sat beside me, he said this is just so sad I can hardly stop from crying,” said Sheila Hancock, Leonard's Sister. “Its so sad they should be here with her."
Mason was just one year old when his grandmother passed away. But seven years later, he knows the pain his family continues to feel.
Sherry Jo Leonard was brutally killed, along with her friend Jason Specht in Specht's Lewistown area home. Both were beaten and a fire was set to try and cover up the crime.
"We never thought we would be sitting here today waiting to find justice," said Hancock.
Waiting and wishing. Hancock and Michele Huntsman are just two of the many family members who are pushing for an arrest and conviction in the case.
"We want someone prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law we want justice served," said Huntsman, Leonard's Sister.
Two years ago, Mifflin County District Attorney Dave Molek talked of getting a grand jury convened to look at the evidence, But that has not yet happened.
District Attorney Molek did not return a call seeking comment on the case.
Frustration with the justice system is boiling over.
"We just wont let it rest until its solved,”said Hancock.
"Sherry would absolutely be fighting for us,” said Huntsman. “She would be doing the same exact thing. She would be there."
If you know any information, you're asked to call state police in Lewistown.
HARRISBURG – Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane today announced the arrest of five individuals for charges that include drug trafficking and prostitution in two separate investigations conducted by narcotics agents in her office.
On Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, authorities in State College arrested an alleged drug dealer they referred to as "a one-stop shop" for a variety of narcotics. Nicholas Keener, 20, 1435 Jody Ave., Lebanon, Lebanon County, was arrested following a series of controlled purchases in recent weeks.
A search warranted executed on Keener's residence yielded 1.25 pounds of marijuana with a street value of $7,625; 52 doses of LSD with a street value of $520; 18 Vicodin tablets with a street value of $90; and two Adderall tablets with a street value of $10.
Keener is charged with 10 counts of possession with intent to manufacture or deliver a controlled substance, nine counts of possession, one count of possession of drug paraphernalia and three counts of criminal use of communications facility.
On Saturday, Nov. 22, 2014, agents arrested Jamal Nelson, Theresa Benson, Brittney Rugg and Tess Triplin after they traveled to Altoona to allegedly deal heroin and engage in sexual activity as a business at a local hotel.
Authorities said they made a controlled purchase of $90 worth of heroin from the group, after which they arrested Nelson, Benson and Rugg and obtained a search warrant for several hotel rooms. Tiplin was inside one of the rooms when the warrants were executed, which yielded an additional amount of heroin packaged for sale, marijuana, paraphernalia, cash, a large supply of condoms and used condoms.
Jamal Nelson, 34, 307 Decker Ave., Johnstown, Cambria County, is charged with one count of criminal conspiracy, one count of conspiracy to commit prostitution, one count of promotion and prostitution, one count of delivery or possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance, one count of possession of marijuana and one count of criminal use of communications facility.
Brittany Rugg, 28, 711 Homer St., Windber, Somerset County is charged with one count of conspiracy to commit prostitution, one count of promotion and prostitution, one count of delivery or possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, one count of possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and one count of criminal use of communications facility.
Tess Triplin, 29, 625 Kennedy Ave., Johnstown, Cambria County, is charged with one count of conspiracy to commit prostitution, one count of promotion and prostitution, one count of delivery or possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, one count possession of a controlled substance, one count of possession of drug paraphernalia and one count of criminal use of communications facility.
Theresa Benson, 32, 307 Decker Ave., Johnstown, Cambria County, is charged with one count of conspiracy to commit prostitution, one count of promotion and prostitution, one count of delivery or possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, two counts of possession of a controlled substance and one count of criminal use of communications facility.
Attorney General Kane thanked the State College Police Department and the Altoona Police Department for their assistance with the investigations. She also thanked the businesses and community leaders in Blair County involved with Operation Our Town.
Individuals who have witnessed a drug deal in their neighborhood or suspect illegal drug activity where they live or work can send an anonymous tip to the Office of Attorney General by texting PADRUGS + YOUR TIP to 847411. Tips can also be submitted electronically here.
FERGUSON, MISSOURI - Protestors marched into the early hours overnight.
Demonstrations spiraled out of control.. And turned violent... At least a dozen buildings were set on fire, businesses looted, windows broken, and police say hundreds of shots of gunfire were heard.
All angry over a grand jury decision NOT to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of 18 year old Michael Brown.
Following the decision -- prosecutors released documents reviewed by the 12 jurors ...including images...and testimony by Officer Wilson.
Wilson says he shot a series of rounds at Brown during the August ninth confrontation which began while he was still in his squad car.
Wilson said 'His hands were inside on me. ... And he entered my vehicle with his hands, arms, and his head...assaulting me."
Police continued to urge for protesters to demonstrate peacefully...
Brown's mother broke down among protesters following the decision...calling for the system that claimed the life of her teenage son to be fixed.
Even in her anger -- she urged protesters not to combat violence with violence.
Danielle Nottingham reports from Ferguson.
Everyone is invited to the New Day Annual "Giving Thanks" dinner.
It is held in 4 different locations Tuesday night in Johnstown- and one location Wednesday night in Windber.
The dinners will be served at 5:30 pm both nights.
Tickets are completely free for anyone! You can stop by the New Day office and pick up your tickets.
New Day, Inc.
109 South Street
Johnstown, PA 15901
Morrellville Church of the Brethren
408 Chandler Avenue
Johnstown, PA 15906
First Lutheran Church
415 Vine Street
Johnstown, PA 15901
Moxham Lutheran Church
500 Park Avenue
Johnstown, PA 15902
St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church
605 Graham Avenue
Windber, PA 15963
Any questions? please call New Day at 535-8202.
TAYLOR TOWNSHIP, CENTRE COUNTY - One person is dead after a motorcycle crash.
It happened just after 3 o'clock Monday afternoon on Tyrone Pike in Taylor Township, Centre County.
Police say the driver went off the road hitting an embankment and was thrown into a tree.
The driver died at the scene.
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