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First Posted: 12/7/2014

Police warn of phone scams

Two Hanover township residents are out nearly $4,000 as a result of two phone scams.

Police said an elderly female resident recently was contacted by a man, who identified himself as her grandson. The male then told her he was in another state, was involved in a serious motor vehicle accident and placed under arrest. A second male, who claimed to be an attorney told the victim that she could pay approximately $3,000 to get her grandson out of trouble.

The victim then followed instructions from the alleged attorney and purchased Green Dot Money Pak cards for $3,000 and provided the cards’ codes to the alleged attorney.

Upon completion of the phone call, the victim contacted a family member and learned that her grandson was not in any type of trouble.

A second phone call involved a man claiming he was from the Internal Revenue Service. The suspect called a male victim and allegedly told him he owed the IRS approximately $4,874 in back taxes, but said a payment of $874 would clear the debt. The victim followed instructions to go to any Turkey Hill Mini Market, purchase a Reloadit Money Card and provided the code to the suspect.

As with the first victim, the male victim then called the IRS and found that the phone call was a scam.

Woman charged with assaulting police officer with syringe

A woman who police said has a heroin addiction and hepatitis was charged Dec. 4 with assaulting a police officer with a syringe inside an apartment building at Sherman Hills.

Kristen Dudzik, 32, of Wilkes-Barre, was arraigned on charges of aggravated assault, simple assault, reckless endangerment, resisting arrest, defiant trespass, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and public drunkenness. She was jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $40,000 bail.

Dudzik earlier pleaded guilty to a a drug paraphernalia possession charge in connection to having a syringe and heroin packets in the restroom at Sheetz, Wilkes-Barre Township Boulevard, on Oct. 7. She was fined $325.

Police responded to the building for a drug overdose involving Dudzik, who was found standing in a hallway going through her purse. Dudzik allegedly refused the officer’s commands to remove her hand from the purse.

Police said Dudzik struggled with the officer. She kept her clenched hand in the purse she pulled back causing the officer to be stuck with an uncapped syringe that was in the purse, the complaint says.

After Dudzik was arrested, police said they found the uncapped syringe with blood inside the needle, other syringes, empty heroin packets, cotton swabs and a spoon in the purse. Police said Dudzik claimed she has hepatitis C.

The officer was treated at General Hospital for the injury caused by the uncapped syringe. Before she was arraigned, Dudzik called the allegations “lies.”

“I didn’t stab anybody; this is all lies,” she said.

Man stunned with Taser, arrested after pursuit through Wilkes-Barre

• A New Jersey man was arrested on charges he initiated a pursuit with police early Dec. 3.

Police allege Jason Glover, 27, drove at a high rate of speed and failed to obey a stop sign at South Hancock and South streets just after 3 a.m.

Glover allegedly initiated a pursuit with police through the city and drove through the intersection at South Pennsylvania Avenue and South Franklin Street onto an unpaved dirt road.

Glover abandoned the vehicle, fleeing toward Westminster Street, and was arrested a short time later in a backyard following a foot chase, police said.

A passenger in the car, Michael Negron, age unknown, was detained on Hanover Street near Barney Street. Negron was cited with public drunkenness, police said.

Man arrested after refusing to leave church

• Police Saturday said a man wanted on a warrant was arrested after he refused to leave the St. Stanislaus Kostka Church on North Main Street.

Police were called to the church around 4:30 p.m. for a report of a man and woman who would not leave. Officers identified the man as Joseph Lukas of Cooper Street, Pringle, and after a records’ check found out that he was wanted by Luzerne County Adult Probation.

Lukas was taken into custody and transported to the Luzerne County Correctional Facility.

Child-rape suspect Misty Machinshok seeks release on nominal bail

• A woman accused of orchestrating and at times participating in the repeated rape of a child will get a chance to explain in court why she feels she’s being held on excessive bail.

A Luzerne County judge on Friday ordered a Dec. 15 hearing for Misty Machinshok, 33, of Wilkes-Barre, in response to a petition for nominal bail.

The petition says Machinshok has been incarcerated for more than 250 days with straight bail set at $250,000, which the document claims is excessive and in violation of the state constitution.

Machinshok was arrested and arraigned on Jan. 7 and again on Feb. 17 on 10 charges related to the rape and assault of a child, and a set of 10 conspiracy charges also related to the rape and assault of a child.

• Bear Creek Community Charter School taking shape

Construction on the new Bear Creek Community Charter School continues on schedule and the school’s layout and size is becoming apparent, a representative for the school’s architect said Thursday.

Tom Gerchak of the architectural firm Hemmler + Camayd told the school’s board of trustees that roof trusses are up for the elementary wing and the steel framework for the middle school wing is up as well. Gerchak said it will soon be time to start on the back part of the school and the gymnasium.

He reported there have been several small “bumps” in the process, but overall the project is moving along well.

“The courtyard size is tremendous,” Gerchak said. “You could easily fit the entire student body out there. You can see the framing in place for the outdoor classroom, and you can really see the curved wall taking shape for the commons area.”