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DuBois woman killed in crash near Parker Dam

PINE TOWNSHIP — A DuBois woman was killed and two others were seriously injured when a vehicle collided with a motorcycle on Friday evening.

The crash occurred on Friay at 6:15 p.m. at the intersection of state Route 153 and Anderson Creek Road between Parker Dam and S.B. Elliott state parks in Pine Township.

Linda Solida, 57, of DuBois, was pronounced dead at the scene, according to Clearfield-based state police. She was a passenger on a motorcycle driven by Michael Solida, 53, also of DuBois.

According to police, the motorcycle was traveling south on State Park Road/SR 153 in front of a vehicle driven by a 21-year-old male. The male’s name and place of residence were not provided by police.

According to the police report, the motorcycle was making a right hand turn onto Anderson Creek Road, the vehicle failed to reduce its speed before striking the motorcycle on the rear right corner. The vehicle continued traveling and ran over the motorcycle after exiting the western side of the roadway. The vehicle continued traveling off road until it impacted with a tree.

Michael Solida and the driver of the vehicle were transported by ambulance to UPMC Altoona for injuries. Neither Michael Solida nor Linda Solida were wearing a helmet at the time of the collision.

The driver of the car was wearing a seat belt.

Troopers were assisted on scene by Lawrence Township Vol. Fire Co., Clearfield EMS and Penfield EMS.

'The Cliffs' at Curwensville Lake closed to swimming

CURWENSVILLE — Because they are concerned about the safety of all who visit Curwensville Lake Recreation Area, Curwensville Lake Authority approved closing the area of the lake known locally as “The Cliffs” to visitors and posting signs stating no swimming is permitted there.

The authority on Tuesday unanimously approved closing the site located near the group tent camping area following discussion.

Teens are coming to the spot in the early evening to dive off a highwall and swim in the water that is about 30 feet deep. Member Cody Fye told the other board members he believes the practice is a safety hazard because it is very difficult for those driving boats through there to see the heads of the swimmers.

“Some of those boats have come close to hitting people,” Fye said.

Other members said there has also been a large problem with people using the site, leaving their trash. Also, those utilizing the group camping area have been disturbed by the noise swimmers make.

Secretary Susan Williams said several evenings she has had to ask teenagers to leave the spot.

Chairman Willie Null said those swimming there generally wait until dusk or dark to go there.

“Sometimes the swimmers also hang a rope that they can swing from and jump into the water. The maintenance personnel keeps cutting the ropes down and the kids keep putting them back.”

He said the area has never been designated for swimming, but because of the water’s depth boats can pass through the area easily.

“When those boats create whitecaps on the water, you can’t see the heads of the people who are swimming. It’s really dangerous for the swimmers,” Null said.

He said the use of the site is also creating issues with those who are using the group tent camping site.

“We want our paid guests to be comfortable,” Null said.

Outdoors Page - A8


Alex Fisher of Philipsburg performs a “board slide” trick on the rail at the skate park at the Clearfield Driving Park

Woman gets jail sentence for stealing from fire company

Sarah Yvonne Dunlap, 37, of Winburne, pleaded guilty to stealing $55,675 from the Winburne Vol. Fire Co. and was sentenced to serve 18 months to five years in SCI-Muncy by President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman yesterday at Sentencing Court.

She pleaded guilty to theft by deception, three counts and access device fraud, three counts, all of which are felonies of the third degree. It was an open plea meaning the commonwealth and the defense couldn’t agree on a minimum sentence, leaving the decision up to the presiding judge.

Fire Chief Harold David asked Ammerman to sentence Dunlap to jail, saying she put everyone in the fire company and the community at risk because they couldn’t purchase necessary equipment due to theft.

He also said her crimes have made fundraising more difficult for the fire company because people in the community fear the money would be stolen. Fortunately, the fire company did have insurance, which eventually covered the loss.

“I feel everyone should be held accountable for their actions,” David said.

David asked that she serve a minimum of three years in jail for her crime.

William Gaines spoke on Dunlap’s behalf and said he is a member of the fire company. He said she is truly sorry for what she did.

“She is just an all around good person who made a mistake,” Gaines said.

Her attorney, Kenneth Pennington of Clearfield, said Dunlap is very remorseful and sorry for what she did and has accepted responsibility for her actions by making an open plea of guilt.

He said she has no prior record and has for 17 years been employed as an EMT and has volunteered for numerous organizations.

Pennington also said she has three children at home ages 9, 11 and 16 — and asked for a low amount of jail so she could work to pay off the restitution and support her family.

He said the standard range for her offense is nine to 18 months and asked that it be on the lower side of that range.

Dunlap also spoke at the hearing.

“I do regret the decisions I have made,” Dunlap said. “And there really is no excuse for it.”

She asked for leniency on behalf of her children.

“You stole money from the fire company knowing that if you were caught there would be serious implications,” Ammerman said. “It seems your kids probably could count as victims as well.”

Deputy District Attorney Trudy Lumadue asked Ammerman to sentence Dunlap to a minimum of 18 months because Dunlap knew the implications of her actions, the large amount of money stolen, and the fact that she has yet made no effort to pay any of the money back.

In addition to the jail sentence, Ammerman ordered Dunlap to pay $55,675 in restitution to Glatfelter Claims Management Inc.

According to Clearfield-based state police, Dunlap had access to the company’s bank account and credit cards and allegedly stole the money from the fire company and used it for personal use between 2016-2018.

This isn’t the first time someone was caught stealing from the fire company.

In 2016, former fire company Treasurer Brittany Bell was accused of stealing $43,000 from the fire company from 2014-16. She accepted a guilty plea and was sentenced to serve 90 days to one year in the Clearfield County Jail plus two years probation and was ordered to pay restitution to the fire company. Dunlap was a member of the fire company at the time.

Region reports 14 new COVID-19 cases

HARRISBURG — Centre County reported eight new cases of COVID-19 on Monday while Clearfield County reported three, Jefferson County reported two, and Elk, Blair and Cambria each reported one case.

That is a total of 14 new cases in the Progressland region.

The total number of cases to date in Clearfield County and neighboring counties is listed below:

  • Blair –105 with 1 death
  • Cambria –137 with 3 deaths
  • Centre –251 with 8 deaths
  • Clearfield- 93 with 0 deaths
  • Elk –30 with 0 deaths
  • Jefferson –39 with 0 deaths

The Pennsylvania Department of Health confirmed there are 328 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the statewide total to 95,742. All 67 counties in Pennsylvania have cases of COVID-19.

The number of tests administered within the last seven days between July 6 and July 12 is 135,631 with 5,560 positive test results.

There are 6,911 total deaths attributed to COVID-19, an increase of seven new deaths reported.

“As the entire state is now in the green phase, we must remain committed to protecting against COVID-19 by wearing a mask, practicing social distancing and avoiding large gatherings,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine said. “Pennsylvania has been a model for the country on how to reopen effectively using a careful, measured approach. However, the virus has not gone away and we are seeing cases rise, especially in Southwest Pennsylvania.”

Mask-wearing is required in all businesses and whenever leaving home. Consistent mask-wearing is critical to preventing the spread of COVID-19.

There are 635 patients who have a positive serology test and either COVID-19 symptoms or a high-risk exposure, which are considered probable cases and not confirmed cases. There are 835,732 patients who have tested negative to date.

Most of the patients hospitalized are ages 65 or older, and most of the deaths have occurred in patients 65 or older.

The department is seeing significant increases in the number of COVID-19 cases among younger age groups, particularly 19 to 24-year-olds. In nursing and personal care homes, there are 18,279 resident cases of COVID-19, and 3,481 cases among employees, for a total of 21,760 at 750 distinct facilities in 55 counties. Out of total deaths, 4,699 have occurred in residents from nursing or personal care facilities.

Approximately 7,158 of our total cases are health care workers.