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Court briefs


September 19. 2013 11:43PM
SHEENA DELAZIO

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WILKES-BARRE — The co-defendant of murder suspect Hugo Selenski has been scheduled to appear for a pretrial conference in advance of his Oct. 7 trial.


Paul Weakley, 43, is serving life in prison on federal racketeering charges related to the 2003 deaths of Michael Kerkowski and Tammy Fassett. He previously has been scheduled to go to trial in Luzerne County, but his case has often been delayed because Selenski has not yet been brought to trial on related charges.


Weakley is a witness in the case. Selenski’s case is on hold due to a grand jury investigation surrounding the case.


Police said Kerkowski and Fassett’s bodies were unearthed on the property where Selenski lived in Kingston Township in June 2003.


WILKES-BARRE — A search warrant filed by police after a bicyclist died in an accident earlier this month seeks to obtain his medical records.


Richard Swartz, 33, of West Ross Street, Wilkes-Barre, died from injuries after being struck by a vehicle while riding in the area of Boston Hill Road and East Main Street on Sept.5. Swartz was struck at about 8 p.m. He was pronounced dead at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center in Plains Township just before 9 p.m.


The search warrant seeks to obtain medical records of Swartz, including blood tests and blood-alcohol tests obtained at the hospital.


The search warrant details that James Lech was driving a Dodge truck on his way home from work when an object hit his vehicle shortly after 8 p.m.


Police found Swartz at the scene and with “a traumatic injury.”


No charges have been filed in the case.


WILKES-BARRE — A Pittston man charged with inappropriately touching a girl was sentenced Thursday to two years probation.


Bryant Astles, 35, who pleaded guilty to a charge of indecent assault in June, was sentenced by county Judge Lesa Gelb.


Astles must register his address under Megan’s Law for 15 years and can have no unsupervised contact with minors, Gelb said.


According to court papers, a 15-year-old girl reported to police in August 2012 that Astles inappropriately touched her on at least two occasions.


WILKES-BARRE —A woman sentenced earlier this month to seven years probation on charges of forgery and harassment has asked a judge for a reduced sentence.


Theresa Gordon Isabella, 76, was sentenced on Sept. 8 to the probationary term by Luzerne County Judge Joseph Sklarosky Jr. after being convicted of charges she sent unwanted mail to her neighbor and his family.


In court papers filed Thursday by her attorney, Tom Marsilio, Isabella requests a reduced sentence for a number of reasons, including that she will be living in Florida and the sentence would “produce a hardship for her,” that there was not enough evidence to convict her and that the prosecuting officer, Josh Winters, was recently demoted from police chief to corporal.


Isabella requests a new trial or that charges be dismissed or that her sentence be reduced.




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