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Effort to trap, neuter Nanticoke’s stray cats gets underway

NANTICOKE — Dawn Mendygral and other volunteers from Happy Hearts & Tails, a non-profit organization, were setting traps for about 20 feral cats in areas of the city with high populations of the felines, so they could be neutered and returned to their home environment.

The Sunday activity marked the beginning of a two day Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) effort, where cats are returned to their home colony, neutered, having received a rabies vaccination and with ears “tipped” for future identification.

The event is a cooperative effort among Happy Hearts & Tails, the city of Nanticoke and the Eastern Pennsylvania Animal Alliance (EPAA) a non-profit, providing a “spay mobile” to neuter the felines.

The effort however, requires a great deal of commitment and effort on the part of volunteers. After the traps are placed, they must be monitored until a cat is trapped. The cat must then be removed and kept overnight awaiting neutering.

Trespasser has extradition warrant from feds

WILKES-BARRE — A man trespassing in a condemned house on Brookside Street has an extradition warrant from federal authorities, police said.

Momodou Njie, 39, of Lawrenceville, Georgia was taken into custody Friday night and committed to the Luzerne County Correctional Facility.

Police said Njie has several aliases and was positively identified through a digital fingerprint database. The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency has a warrant to extradite him under the name Edrisa Ceesay, police said. Police said Njie is originally from Gambia. ICE was contacted and confirmed Njie was wanted, police said.

Police came in contact with Njie shortly before 7 p.m. while responding to a complaint about a person trespassing at the residence that had been posted by the city on June 29 as unfit for habitation.

Mountain Top man dies in ATV wreck

WRIGHT TOWNSHIP — An ATV crash resulted in the death of a 22-year old Mountain Top man early Sunday morning, township police said.

Matt Hilenski was thrown from the vehicle, of which he was not the owner, between 3 and 3:30 a.m. on Laude Drive, suffering fatal injuries. He was not wearing a seat belt.

Wright Township Police Sgt. Scott Rozitski said Hilenski was driving a Polaris Ranger.

Rozitski said Hilenski’s rate of speed at the time of the accident had not yet been determined.

Area teachers get favorable reviews in new evaluation system

The majority of Luzerne County’s public school teachers — 87 percent — were rated “proficient” in 2013-14 under a new evaluation system adopted by the state, while 23 percent received the top ranking of “distinguished.” Two teachers hit the bottom of the four-level system, getting the designation of “failing.”

The state recently released results of the evaluation, though it only provides total number of teachers rated in each of the four categories. No data for individual teachers is provided. In fact, in an effort to make sure teachers can’t be identified, no data is given for schools that have five or fewer teachers.

Man beaten and robbed in Hazleton

HAZLETON — Police reported a man was assaulted and robbed early Saturday morning in the 200 block of East First Street.

Police responded to the area at 5:25 a.m. and spoke with the victim, a 25-year-old Hispanic man. Police said the man told them he was assaulted by several males, forced to the ground and his cell phone was taken from his pocket. The males fled in an unknown direction. The man was treated at the scene for minor injuries. Anyone with information about the assault and robbery is asked to contact the Hazleton City Police Department at 570 459-4940.