MAYOR OF KITTATINNY BEHIND BARS
By: Kristin Dvorak
Mayor Gustavus Petykiewicz, 56, of Kittatinny, Penn. faces jail time for a drinking and driving incident that resulted in the injury of another citizen, Robert Doane, 40.
Saturday afternoon, Doane was driving northbound on State Hwy 117 when another vehicle came crashing into his driver-side at the intersection of Fonebone Rd. and Hwy 117. Both vehicles were found upright in a field on the east side of the highway by the deputy at the scene, Gordon Slivovitz.
Slivovitz found Doane disoriented and bleeding from the head. His vehicle, a 1997 Buick Le Sabre, did not have a functioning airbag, but the driver was wearing his seatbelt at the time of the crash. He had several visible wounds.
Paramedics called to the scene were concerned that the man may have suffered some spinal injuries, so Flight for Life was reached. The helicopter removed Doane from the ambulance and flew him to Northeast Pennsylvania Hospital and Trauma Center in Wilkes-Barre, Penn. to be treated.
A witness at the scene, Alice Magarian, 33, stated that she saw Petykiewicz hesitate at the stop sign at the intersection and then continue driving, striking Doane’s driver-side.
It appeared that Petykiewicz was not wearing his seatbelt and did not have any injuries. A half-empty bottle of vodka was found on the floor of his passenger-side and the 2006 Ford Explorer smelled of alcohol, Slivovitz recalled.
When asked if he had been drinking, Petykiewicz admitted that he had and slurred, “Do you think we could just keep this quiet? I’m the mayor of Kittatinny.”
Petykiewicz took a breathalyzer test, which indicated blood alcohol content (BAC) of .14. The legal limit in Penn. is .08.
Petykiewicz was placed under arrest at the scene and taken away in handcuffs. He was transported to Schuylkill County Jail in downtown Kittatinny to be retained, fingerprinted and have mug shots taken.
The mayor did not call an attorney, but was released to his wife, Gloria Petykiewicz, who posted cash bail of $500. The couple has not yet given a statement.
A preliminary hearing will be held in Schuylkill County District Court on Tuesday at 9:00 a.m., where Petykiewicz will face a charge that could result in prison time. The maximum prison term for this type of felony is ten years, said Schuylkill County District Attorney Robert Morgenthau.
Staff at the Northeast Pennsylvania Hospital and Trauma Center said Doane is in satisfactory condition. He suffered broken ribs, a broken jaw and various injuries to the head, chest and abdominal area.
Petykiewicz’s final sentence will be revealed on Tuesday.
Violent crimes at UW-Whitewater
BY KRISTIN DVORAK
The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater has suffered as a campus, community and family due to a number of violence-based crimes in recent weeks.
One incident involved sophomore Jordan Gittens late one evening. The Royal Purple covered the story in an article on Oct. 8.
Four individuals allegedly approached Gittens when he was walking home with a friend. The group of attackers said some sexually offensive things to him. Gittens confronted the group to defend himself, which then lead to the battery that took place.
Gittens, along with Chief of UW-Whitewater Police, Matthew Kiederlen, believes the encounter with these men should be legally classified as a hate crime because the occurrence “happened out of homophobia,” said Gittens.
Because the incident occurred outside of campus, near the 900 block of W. Main St., UW-Whitewater Police cannot technically rule it as so. It is left in the hands of the City of Whitewater Police.
Gittens, like many others, feels that, “as a campus family, I think we need to really just raise awareness.”
This was completed in a gathering that took place in the University Center on campus on Oct. 15. Students, staff and faculty united in a range of colorful t-shirts to illustrate the diversity on campus, as well as to relay an overall message of support and togetherness for the LGBT community.
A second incident happened to another student, junior Tyler Lanphear, only two weeks ago.
According to the victim, he was exiting his apartment building with a group of acquaintances when three African American individuals pulled up in a car together. One of the peers who were with Lanphear said some vulgar comments to the men in the vehicle, which then prompted an attack.
The group Lanphear was with left the scene, leaving him to face the offenders alone.
Later that night, Lanphear was taken to a nearby hospital and treated for his injuries, which included several contusions on his face as well as a cut on his lip that required six stitches.
Chancellor Richard Telfer issued a university-wide statement via e-mail regarding the violent occurrences. Both crimes are currently still under investigation.
“If it is determined that students were the perpetrators in these situations, we will use our own disciplinary process alongside the legal process,” Telfer delivered.
Gittens offered one final potential solution: “Don’t go off on your own,” especially at night. He regrets letting his friends continue to walk home without him.
In order to assure that our peers remain safe on and around campus, students, staff and faculty need to come together to support and protect one another.
June 12, 2005
“Stay hungry. Stay foolish.”
Steve Jobs, 50, co-founder of Apple Computer Inc. and Pixar Animation Studios, joined Stanford University’s graduating class today, clad in a black and red graduation gown, to deliver his commencement speech.
The speech provided three stories about Jobs’ life that bridged his adoption at birth to his view on death; all eventually tying together to create one message: follow your heart.
Initially, Jobs talked about “connecting the dots” in life, which discussed the hardships he endured that eventually lead him to success.
“It wasn’t all romantic,” he admitted. His adoptive parents vowed to raise a son who would attend college, so Jobs opted to enroll at Reed College in Portland, Ore. A brief six months passed by before he eventually dropped out of his required classes and began “dropping in” on classes that struck an interest; particularly calligraphy. This inspired the typography now found on Macintosh computers, as well as other personal computers.
“You have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future,” Jobs noted, because maintaining the faith “will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well-worn path.”
When Jobs was 20, he collaborated with friend and high school peer Steve “Woz” Wozniak to establish Apple Computer Inc.; a company that is now worth $2 billion. In the midst of Apple’s success, Jobs lost his high-ranking position to John Sculley, a former Pepsi-Cola employee that Jobs personally sought out.
This lead Jobs to the creation of yet another computer company he called NeXT, as well as Pixar Animation Studios, the company responsible for producing several box office sensations. Apple eventually bought NeXT and rehired a newly married Jobs as chief executive.
From these trials came triumph and Jobs noted that it would not have been possible if he hadn’t remained passionate about life and his interests.
“The only way to do great work is to love what you do,” Jobs advised.
But Jobs’ brilliance and hunger for life didn’t fade even when he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer about a year ago. “Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose,” Jobs said. He remains healthy due to an operation that was capable of curing the cancer.
To achieve your goals, you must keep death in your foresight and love and life in your heart, Jobs abridged.
In his final words of guidance, Jobs relayed an appropriate message to the Stanford graduates from Whole Earth Catalog’s final 1972 issue: “Stay hungry. Stay foolish.”
CITY OF KITTATINNY IN THE MIDST OF A FINANCIAL EMERGENCY
Mayor Gustavus Petykiewicz of Kittatinny, Pa. proposed a new budget plan for the City Council to review.
State law requires a balanced budget to be approved and signed into law by Dec. 1, 2014. The law will go into effect in January 2015.
Petykiewicz suggested a total spending cut of 2.9%, or about $100,000. This includes decreasing police wages significantly, which may be a result of reducing the amount of hours police spend patrolling and protecting the city.
Kittatinny’s chief of police, Roman Hruska, addressed these potential cuts.
Hruska announced, “I cannot stand idly by and watch a city of this size be deprived of regular police protection for a third of each day.”
Additionally, Hruska was the first of many to say he would accept a 10% pay cut in order to save the city.
Denelda Penoyer, president of the Kittatinny City Council, stood alongside Hruska.
“In the spirit of shared sacrifice,” Penoyer concurred with the chief of police on accepting a 10% pay cut in order to lessen the blow Kittatinny police forces would have to take.
Penoyer also suggested raising taxes to five mills, rather than the mayor’s proposed 4.3 mills, but recognized, “This will mean hardship for some people.”
The mayor’s proposal also includes increases in yearly parking fees, city utilities, health insurance and legal counsel.
The budget proposal states that two AFSCME personnel will be laid off by seniority. Martha Mittengrabben, president of AFSCME Local Union 644, said she is, “not happy about losing two colleagues in the union.”
Mittengrabben also agreed that the pay cut idea is a good start. She stated more than once that, “The mayor is right. This is an emergency.”
So, in the spirit of shared sacrifice, will the Kittatinny City Council renegotiate in order to maintain normal city functions?
By: Kristin Dvorak
Recalling her childhood isn’t something Natalie S. does often; so as I prodded her with questions about her broken family and home life, she slowly began to untangle her story.
Imagine a small farmhouse that sits on a winding country road, at least twenty miles from downtown Nowhere, Wisconsin. Some might describe it as shack-like, but to Natalie, this was home. As she described it to me, “I didn’t particularly like living there- it was small, smoky, shabby… We only had one bathroom and half the place didn’t have electricity. My parents didn’t really take care of my sisters and me, let alone themselves or the house.” Natalie, one of four girls in a family of six (including her parents), went on to talk about how especially her mother’s lifestyle exacerbated the issues at home. She told me that much of what her mother endured growing up has carried over into her own life.
Natalie’s mom, Eva, has been an ardent smoker since she was only 13 years old, “and has even admitted to smoking while she was pregnant with me. The problem hasn’t stopped; it’s only gotten worse- to the point where her gums are starting to blacken and her teeth are falling out.” Furthering this addiction, Eva has been a heavy drinker for as long as Natalie can remember. “I always assumed drinking was okay because both my parents, especially my mother, always did it. So I started drinking at a young age (14). I just thought that’s how everyone’s parents were.” I talked with Natalie for well over an hour about why she thought her mom was the person she is today. Not only was Eva the daughter of an alcoholic father who died of liver cancer, but Natalie also expressed to me that her mother was the victim of rape. Natalie’s great uncle, Tim, sexually assaulted Eva before Natalie or any of her sisters was born. Several years passed before that news reached Natalie. When it did, though, it hit her harder than she thought it would be. This all happened recently, and when Natalie found out, a tidal wave of memories came rushing back to her. “I remember sitting in the cab of my great uncle’s truck with him as he drove me home from the movie theater. He was tickling me a lot and I didn’t realize it was inappropriate until a long time after that. I was so young, maybe ten years old.” She continued to describe this drive home from the movie theater and through watery eyes told me her great uncle, Tim, had attempted to sexually assault her that day. This has caused a lot of strife for Natalie. She’s never allowed herself to get close to males, including her own father. Now she realizes that the incident from her childhood is the reason for the lack of trust she shares with men. She elaborated, “Even getting into my first serious relationship took a lot of courage. Opening up to males, has been hard my whole life because it’s difficult to trust someone when at such a young age, my trust was violated by my own family member.” These events have affected Eva and in turn trickled down to Natalie. Not only does Eva probably have some emotional scars from her childhood, but she and her family grew up poor as well; which is part of the reason Natalie thinks her mom was such an absentee parent to her and her three sisters. “She just followed suit because that’s all she knew. And that’s what I was born into.” Natalie reiterated more than a few times that she has made a vow to herself that she wouldn’t turn out like her mother just because of the way she was raised. “I don’t want to be like her at all”, she muttered.
Natalie describes her mother as someone who just doesn’t care about being a parent. “Parenting almost seemed like a phase for her”, she said. ““My mom makes me feel like she’s sick of being a parent and that me and my sisters are nothing but a nuisance.” Eva never asked Natalie what she wanted to be when she grew up, never talked to her about taking the ACT or even about college. Likewise, among her friends she was known as the dumb one. School never came easily to Natalie, but she has a lot of common sense and more street-smarts than most of the kids she went to high school with. Constantly being put down by her family and friends, Natalie began to believe that she would never succeed in life… That she would always be stuck in poverty without a proper education. “I didn’t have electricity in my bedroom, so I would sleep on the couch every night during the week to be able to set an alarm for school the next morning.” Every time she did this, though, Natalie would be scolded by her parents. They didn’t seem to understand that she had to get up to get ready every day for work and high school. She had a 4:00 a.m. alarm that would wake her up, prompting her to get ready for her Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) courses each morning. Weekends were no better. All throughout high school, Natalie juggled two jobs, school, sports and a social life- all which she was fully responsible for, including finding rides to and from. She relied a lot on her close friends, whose parents began to take the place of her own; driving her around on weekends, allowing her to sleep over and paying for weekend outings. “I didn’t want to be home on weekends. If I stayed home, I would be alone because I didn’t want friends to come over, and I couldn’t go anywhere because my parents either didn’t want to drive me or they were gone out drinking.” Again, Natalie finished this part of our interview with a whisper: “I just don’t want to turn out like my parents.”
And so far, she hasn’t. Immediately after high school Natalie moved out of her parents’ house to Illinois, where she moved in with her then-serious boyfriend of three years. She started working at a Domino’s Pizza part-time. This only lasted roughly a month before she decided to apply for full-time nanny positions. She accepted an offer from a family in the area. “The family I started working for took advantage of my lack of knowledge and copped me out of at least $2,000 by committing tax fraud for the year that I worked for them.” She quit and upgraded yet again, working for a different family who offered her better benefits. Additionally, Natalie began to take college courses through the College of DuPage. While being a part-time student, full-time nanny and between jobs, Natalie and her boyfriend split up because he cheated on her after four years of being in a committed relationship. She explained, “I feel like everyone in my life has been a disappointment so far. But I’m still working for the family whose offer I accepted and starting the summer of 2014, I will assume a live-in position with them.” Natalie accepted the live-in position so as to not live under the same roof as her ex-boyfriend. She also feels extremely comfortable with the family she’s worked for over the past year. “They’ve given me a sense of what a family should be like. They’ve shown me what I want to be like for my kids and I almost view them as parents”, she said.
Beginning this coming summer, Natalie will start a new chapter of her life with a stable substitute family and a career. She is obviously on a better track than where the events in her life could have lead her. Natalie concluded our interview with a statement that made my heart melt a little bit: “Looking back now, everything that’s happened to me in my life has made me who I am. I’m focusing on work and my education and taking it day by day. I think I’ve turned out all right… I’m just hanging in there.”