It appears the woman shot to death last week in Upper Macungie Township wasn't the intended target. Jose Bencosme has told police he thought he was killing his ex-wife's boyfriend when he fired several shots point-blank into a vehicle early Friday morning. Instead, it was his ex-wife, 44-year-old Maria Rodriguez who was killed in the parking lot at Lineage Logistics as she arrived for work. The boyfriend has told investigators Bencosme had threatened to kill him and Rodriguez the day before the shooting, and that Rodriguez had obtained a Protection from Abuse order.
The woman accused of killing Pottsville jeweler Patrick Murphy over three years ago has pleaded guilty to his death in a New Orleans hotel room. A week before her trial was set to begin, Megan Hall agreed to plead guilty to manslaughter in the case, an amendment to the original charge of second-degree murder. The 28-year-old was sentenced to 25 years in prison with all but 10 years suspended, so she'll only have to serve 10 years of that sentence and with time served factored in, Hall has seven years remaining to serve. Murphy and his family have operated Murphy Jewelers in Pottsville since 1913. There are also stores near Hamburg and at the Lehigh Valley Mall.
Investigators do not believe foul play was involved in the death of a person found near the South Bethlehem Greenway. The body of a Black man was found shortly after 8 o'clock Sunday night. Authorities believe the body had been there for a while, and that the public is not in danger. County detectives and the coroner were on scene in the area of Hayes and Buchanan streets for several hours Sunday night. The person has not yet been identified.
The Bethlehem Historic Conservation Commission on Monday night rejected plans to tear down six buildings and then build a new cultural center at the current Banana Factory Arts Center site in South Bethlehem. ArtsQuest wanted to replace the six buildings on Northampton Street with one, five-story, 73,000-square-foot building costing $22.1 million. ArtsQuest had already received permission to demolish four of the buildings, but the commission last night voted 3-2 against granting the destruction of the other two buildings.
The start of the summer travel season in June was a memorable one at Lehigh Valley International Airport. LVIA says more than 92,000 passengers used the airport last month, a 4.6 percent increase from June 2021 and the best June since 2001. Airport officials expect strong numbers to continue through both July and August.
If your air conditioning is on the fritz right now, it couldn't have come at a worse time. "A heat wave begins today and it will last into the weekend," says Accu-Weather's Joe Lundberg says the earliest temperatures will dip below a high of 90 degrees is Monday.
Gov. Tom Wolf's administration has announced a new initiative to train and retain more teachers in Pennsylvania. Acting Education Secretary Eric Hagarty says it's an issue that demands action. "Over the last decade, we've seen a dramatic decrease in people entering the field of education. Ten years ago, roughly 20,000 new teachers were entering our classrooms each year. But last year there were only around 6000 who did so," Hagarty says. Hagarty has released plans for the program that will use 50 steps to address the teacher shortage. One of those ideas is to make it easier for out-of-state candidates to get their licenses in Pennsylvania and waive their basic skills assessment for three years.
Republican candidate for governor Doug Mastriano is reportedly clearing out videos from his Facebook accounts. The current state senator has reportedly deleted more than a dozen videos over the past few months. Mastriano has reportedly removed potentially problematic or controversial posts, including tweets promoting the Qanon conspiracy theory, as well as videos in which he called local faith leaders "cowards." Mastriano's state Senate website reportedly has also been scrubbed of his plan to lift medical privacy restrictions so the government could disclose the names and locations of people infected with COVID-19.
As John Fetterman continues to campaign for Senate from the sidelines, for health reasons, his Republican opponent, Mehmet Oz, is taking issue with his style of running. "He seems to be completely focused on letting his team do all the dirty work and he never actually talks about the issues. Where do you stand on energy? What's going on with inflation in your mind? Why do you want more of these reckless spending initiatives?" Oz says. Fetterman's campaign has suggested the democrat could be back on the trail in the next week or two.
The ketchup bottles are no more at the former Heinz Field. Crews used cranes to remove the pieces, and other signage, yesterday as preparations continue at the newly-renamed Acrisure Stadium. Some fans stopped by the facility to take pictures of the bottles before they were taken down. A 15-year naming rights deal was finalized with Acrisure last week.
Former William Allen High School standout and University of Connecticut star Tyrese Martin has signed a NBA deal. The Atlanta Hawks announced Martin has signed a multi-year deal with the team. Exact terms have not been disclosed, but the deal reportedly it is a partially-guaranteed two-year term and not a two-way contract. The Hawks acquired Martin via trade on NBA draft night from the Golden State Warriors, who chose him with the 51st overall pick.