It appears road rage led to the shooting of a child on Thanksgiving night. An 18-year-old Allentown man has reportedly admitted to firing eight shots at another vehicle near Grape Street in Whitehall Township. The incident began near the Route 100/I-78 interchange when a man claims another driver passed him and almost caused an accident. The man says he then began following that vehicle and flashed his high beams. Both vehicles exited I-78 onto Route 22 and eventually onto Fullerton Avenue, ending up at a traffic light near Grape Street. At that point, the man says the second driver showed a gun, causing the man to begin fleeing. At least eight shots were fired, one of which hit a child in the leg. Police found the gunman's car and found a gun under the driver's seat. They say Christopher Bencosme, who was sitting behind the driver, admitted to firing the shots. Bencosme is in Lehigh County Jail under $250,000 bail. The boy who was shot is expected to recover.
Three people were taken to the hospital after an overnight fire in Lehigh County. Firefighters were called to the 8100 block of Main Street in Upper Macungie Township around 1:30 this morning. One woman, who was trapped on the second floor either fell out of the window or jumped. She and two others were taken to the hospital. There conditions are not known. The cause of the fire is still undetermined.
Eight Pennsylvania electric utilities are set to increase their energy prices tomorrow, reflecting the higher cost to produce electricity. Energy charges account for about half of a residential bill. If you're serviced by PPL Electric Utilities, expect to see your costs increase about $40 a month for an electric heating customer. Energy executives say their costs are increasing because fuel prices for power generators are going up and that's driven mostly by natural gas.
Pennsylvania House Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff has announced he has been diagnosed with a breakthrough case of COVID-19. The Republican, who represents Centre and Mifflin counties, was fully vaccinated against COVID-19 earlier this year and says in a statement he was tested for COVID-19 prior to Thanksgiving after developing mild symptoms. He has not been in the Capitol since November 18 and has been quarantining and working from home since his test last week.
Pennsylvania's lieutenant governor is stepping up his push to get marijuana records cleared. John Fetterman is promoting an expedited petition program that he hopes will provide marijuana pardons to thousands of people. He says one of his goals in his final year in office is to get as many people as possible to submit their information to the courts for removing their pot records. He says doing so can restore opportunities for housing, student financial aid and employment.
Bill Cosby is back in the spotlight. Prosecutors are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to reinstate his conviction. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court overturned it in June, letting Cosby walk after serving three years in prison for sexually assaulting a woman in 2004. At the time, the Montgomery County DA agreed not to file charges, but prosecutors now argue deals made behind the scenes set a dangerous precedent.
A Pennsylvania state lawmaker wants Hershey Kisses to be the official state candy. Rep. Thomas Mehaffie III represents the Dauphin County district that includes Hershey. He says the idea came from a middle school student. Mehaffie says the Hershey Company makes 70-million kisses each day, making it a big supporter of the state's dairy industry.
There are no cases of the Omicron variant of COVID-19 in New Jersey, but Gov. Phil Murphy says his administration is getting ready for the possibility. "The Department of Health is prepared to quickly identify Omicron in partnership with the CDC," the governor says. Murphy predicts there will soo be Omicron cases identified in his state.