two stories of violence

November 7, 2010

Here are two recent stories of very violent incidents, involving out of state gas drilling employees. The victims include all taxpayers.

I was reluctant to post these stories for fear some readers might think I am trying to generalize about all drillers. That is not my intent here. It is merely to illustrate some grisly particulars in an already recognized trend:

In a press release from Rendell’s office in Harrisburg, state police Commissioner Frank Pawlowski reported more arrests and incidents involving drugs, assaults and illegal weapons in northern Pennsylvania, where much of the drilling into the Marcellus Shale is taking place in the state.

“More and more, it seems the police reports coming out of the northern tier include arrests because of drug use and trafficking, fights involving rig workers, DUIs and weapons being brought into the state and not registered properly,” Pawlowski said.

“We’ve even encountered situations where drilling company employees, who have been convicted of a sexual assault in another state, come here to work and do not register with our Megan’s Law website.” (see news article here)

Also,  see: Police chief: Gas drilling causing increase in crime locally

Gas industry worker charged in Pa. stabbing death
By Jason Whong November 5, 2010, 9:25 pm
pressconnects.com

CHARLESTON TOWNSHIP, TIOGA COUNTY, Pa. — A gas industry worker from Texas has been charged in the Thursday night stabbing death of a local man from whom he rented a room.

Pennsylvania State Police in Mansfield arrested Billy Holden Landry, 49, of Liverpool, Texas. He is charged with criminal homicide and aggravated assault in the death of Shawn Charles Miller, 44, of Cherry Flats Road in Charleston Township, east of Wellsboro.

Police were called just before 11:30 p.m. Thursday to 158 Cherry Flats Road, where Miller rented two upstairs bedrooms to Landry and another gas industry worker.

Miller had no pulse when medics arrived, according to a criminal complaint against Landry filed in District Court in Wellsboro.

Miller was pronounced dead at the scene by the Tioga County Coroner’s Office.

Police said the men were arguing before the stabbing.

Kimberly A. Hess said she witnessed the argument at the home that her mother, Connie Everitt, shared with Miller, Everitt’s boyfriend of 13 years. Miller rented the two upstairs bedrooms in the three-bedroom home to “oil-riggers,” she said.

Hess said she spent the night on the couch and was awakened by Miller asking Landry and the other man, Mike Helton, to be quiet.

“They were drunk, and one had a girl over, and they were all just rowdy and making noise,” Hess said.

Hess said she heard a voice from upstairs taunting Miller and asking him to come upstairs.

Miller remained at the bottom of the stairs and asked them to “shut up, be quiet,” she said.

Hess said the men came downstairs, one with a knife, as Everitt tried to keep the men apart.

Everyone was “eventually pushed down on top of Shawn,” Hess said, as the fight moved toward the television.

“There was a candle that got broke, and I seen blood coming … from Shawn’s wrists, from the top of his hand, actually. And I thought it was from the candle getting broken,” she said.

Miller took a few steps, then fell over. “That’s when we realized he had gotten cut … right below his chest,” Hess said, as she traced a line across her abdomen with her finger.

Landry and Helton left immediately afterward, she said. “They left without their shirts on or anything. They didn’t grab their bags or nothing.”

Just after midnight, Landry went to state police in Mansfield and told the dispatcher that he wanted to speak with a trooper “about a situation he was involved in,” according to the complaint.

Landry told the dispatcher that “two females had beat him up” and that he had stabbed a man “in self-defense,” according to the complaint.
Related

When a trooper interviewed Landry, he said he was protecting himself and that “nobody should take a beating and not protect themselves.”

Police found Helton after 5 a.m. Friday in a trailer in Richmond Township, sleeping in a pair of blue jeans “stained throughout” with blood, according to the complaint.

Helton told police the blood on his pants probably came from Miller, according to the complaint.

Police were unable to say Friday night whether Helton had also been charged in the stabbing.

On Friday afternoon, Landry told police he was hit in the head with a candle and knocked to the ground during the fight and was held down as Miller punched him repeatedly in the face, according to a court document.

Landry told police he removed a knife that was sheathed on his belt and cut and stabbed at Miller, and, as he was driving his truck later, he discarded the knife, according to the complaint.

On Friday afternoon, Hess sat in her home in Wellsboro and described Miller as a nice man who treated her “like his own daughter.”

“I just hope that they get what they deserve. They need to rot in jail,” she said.

Bar fight, black eye leads to Buckeye’s arrest
BY MIichael J. Rudolf (Staff Writer)
thetimes-tribune.com
Published: November 4, 2010

TUNKHANNOCK – A 25-year-old former gas worker from Ohio was extradited to Wyoming County on Wednesday to face charges related to an Oct. 23 bar fight here.

Tunkhannock Police traveled to Ashland, Ohio, to pick up Nathan A. Milam, who is accused of beating another man with a pool cue during a fight at Beagles Pub, East Tioga Street.

According to the police complaint, Patrolman Dustin Cokely responded to a reported fight and found another man outside, bleeding heavily from his face, with his eye and nose swollen. Police learned the victim had fractures near his eye and nose.

The man told Patrolman Cokely that he was playing pool with three other people, including Mr. Milam, but did not know their names. Asked what started the fight, the man said he missed a shot, then someone hit him.

Patrolman Cokely went into the bar and spoke with several patrons, none of whom had ever seen Mr. Milam. A woman told Patrolman Cokely she saw Mr. Milam strike the victim, then run out the back door. The witness gave police a description. Patrolman Cokely said an anonymous caller contacted state police later that day to say Mr. Milam had been dropped off in Binghamton, N.Y., planning to take a bus to Ohio.

Dave Wenzel, a supervisor for a gas drilling contractor. told police he saw Mr. Milam shooting pool. A few moments later, he heard a loud crack near the pool table, and saw a man on the ground covered with blood.

Borough police picked up Mr. Milam in Ohio, where he waived extradition. He is charged with aggravated assault and simple assault, disorderly conduct and harassment and is in the Wyoming County Correctional Facility in lieu of $25,000 bail. A preliminary hearing is set for Wednesday in Tunkhannock.


Somewhat random thoughts on the election

November 4, 2010

The Democrats deserved it. There was no “change”. From the very beginning it was clear. If it were really change: Pelosi would have jettisoned Murtha – and O’Bama would have fired Geithner. If it were really change, the Inauguration would have been more modest.

And the notion of the Jonas Brothers hiding in the White House to surprise Malia and Sasha O’Bama on their first night there, is patently elitist.

Leadership is not trash talk or spin, photo-ops or junkets. It is first and foremost, setting example.

The Democrats and the Republicans have turned into a professional wrestling act. They attack and boast. Good versus Evil. We suck it up like adolescents. It seems we are stuck in a culture based on immaturity.

The campaign ads were despicable. They insult us all. If your solutions are so vapid or nonexistent that you have to throw mud, what kind of person are you? Certainly not a leader. None of you!

As far as the Marcellus Play, it is up to the citizens to demand a moratorium as the only sane plan. The politicos won’t do it on their own, the gravy train is too sweet.


MARC 1 PIPELINE – The end of the Endless Mountains?

October 22, 2010

Here is an urgent article from RDA. The comment period ends October 25th.:

MARC 1 PIPELINE
The end of the Endless Mountains?

Central New York Oil and Gas L.L.C., a subsidiary of Inergy L.P., has applied to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for certification to build a pipeline named MARC 1 through Sullivan County. This would connect interstate gas transmission pipelines running east-west across the state though the counties of Lycoming, Clinton, Tioga, Bradford, Susquehanna, and others.

Permission for this line must be granted by FERC. If granted, pipeline construction that includes the right of eminent domain becomes a reality in the heart of the Pennsylvania’s Endless Mountains. This large pipeline also guarantees “development zones” along its path, and thousands of gas wells with thousands more gathering lines will be constructed to meet up with MARC 1.

This project means an end to the Pennsylvania Wilds and Endless Mountains as we know them. Individual property owner’s rights, ecosystems, sustainable tourism revenue and jobs, and the quality of life for those who live in, travel through, and visit this region are at stake.

For example, one landowner along the route expressed concern over the fate of a 300-year-old tree. “Don’t worry,” a company representative told him. “We’ll pay you for the wood.”

RDA and other advocacy groups have thus far been unsuccessful in obtaining large numbers of people who care enough to make their voices heard. Join with us as we meet that challenge and speak out with a growing voice of outrage.

Comment period on permission for the pipeline ends on October 25th. We continually hear from RDA members asking, “What can I do?” Do this.

1. Contact FERC and express your concern over the environmental impact this pipeline will have on Pennsylvania’s ecosystems. (FERC’s involvement is only in the area of environmental risk assessment and only for this interstate line)
2. Forward this message to your friends and family and ask them to do the same

When contacting FERC, refer to Docket # :    CP10-480-000

Visit the FERC website by clicking here, then click on the orange e-Comment link.

You will be asked for your name and email and a capcha verification. Submitting that information will generate a message to your inbox providing a link to the comment section. You will need the Docket # to submit your comment.

If preferred, you may phone your comments to (202) 502-8258.

Request that this permit BE DENIED due to the impact that construction of this pipeline will have on the environment and ecosystems in Pennsylvania’s northern tier. You do not need to be an expert on the subject or to say more than that.

PLEASE – MAKE A DIFFERENCE TODAY.

UPDATE: Please follow the directions above.  They make you jump through hoops to file a comment but do persevere.


fracadelia

October 7, 2010

The amount of gas drilling vehicle violations in the Northern Tier were no surprise to many.  Operation FracNET was a three day, five county State Police enforcement initiative that inspected 1,135 trucks with a reported focus on  residual waste trucks.  The results:  959 citations, 208 trucks placed out of service, 64 drivers taken out of service.   “The most common problems involved faulty brakes, exterior lighting issues and hauling permit violations.”  Glad to see the industry has been on top of things. 

By any management metric, these are sadly laughable results.  The three day enforcement was a brief and thin view into the daily complex operations of the gas play .  Do the same compliance rates exist throughout this industrial system? 

It is chaos.  It is bedlam.   Trucks upon trucks of traffic, blasting here, drilling there, fracking there, and there.  A thousand critical details go by each day without sufficient oversight. 

This  State Police initiative is welcome and appreciated.  It certainly makes a case for the lack of control the industry has on its transportation sector.  One can only extrapolate this dismal record to other aspects of  management’s purview.

Please note, there have been previous initiates with much the same disheartening results. Guess we taught them a thing or two. They won’t dare violate the law again…
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The corporation is not a person, it is a machine, it reads only numbers. It is fueled by numbers. It is run by numbers. It will die by numbers.

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This severance tax debate is comical. Some legislators applaud it as a hedge against environmental calamity. It is like getting a cancer injection and crying out  “Hooray! I have medical insurance!”

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“The gas industry wants the Senate to give them all  Pennsylvania properties which now have no gas leases.”   

– Clearville’s Blog

Clearville says:  Contact PA Senators before October 12, 2012, the gas industry wants properties with NO GAS LEASES!

STOP FORCED POOLING!
 
Senate emails:

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“If you love the Creator, you’ll love His Creation”

– Jonathan Meritt


The Champagne State

September 10, 2010


Hello, this is Pennsylvania DEP Secretary John Hanger inviting you to vacation here in Pennsylvania.  There are so many things to do in the Champagne State: Take an intoxicating and romantic trip down the bubbly Susquehanna. Milk a dead cow! Come visit one of our many new and exciting theme parks such as Cabot Patch or EnCana Land!

Remember, liberty began and ended right here in Penn’s Woods.  See you soon!


How Natural Gas Drilling has Changed My Eating Habits by Molly M.

September 1, 2010

Following is a guest post from Molly M.  All are invited to submit:

I travelled to Dimock, PA, several weeks ago to see for myself what was going on at my neighbors to the north.  I was astounded to see gas drilling pads in many farm pastures.  On several sites, cows were being pastured and fed adjacent to the pads. I had read about cows being quarantined in Tioga County after they were suspected of drinking polluted flowback water.  In Washington County cows died after exposure to drilling fluids.  At Dunkard Creek, where all aquatic life died from an algae bloom caused by drilling, beef cows were photographed standing in orange-tainted water.  I have decided not to eat beef any more.  Every time I look at a steak, I see those cows standing next to a drill site.

My new discoveries opened my eyes to other concerns.  How about the farmers who were present at the farmers’ markets? Had they leased their lands?  If I knew for sure they had, I bypassed their stands.  I am also boycotting a restaurant next to a drill pad in Fairmount Township.

I began searching for alternative food sources and discovered the joys of shopping at the Lands at Hillside.  The folks who bought this wonderful farm from the old coal barons opted not to lease these lands.  Hooray!  Now I buy hormone-free milk, free range eggs, Hillside Gold butter, fresh ice cream, and other goodies.  Life is good, and my tummy agrees.

How Natural Gas Drilling Has Impacted My Life by Molly M.

August 25, 2010

Following is a guest post from Molly M.  All are invited to submit:

For the past six months my life has been consumed by the prospect of natural gas drilling in my community.  I have attended meetings, been interviewed by the newspaper, written and talked to umpteen legislators, seen Gasland, put a No Frack sign in my yard, talked to everyone within hearing distance, and read, read, read.  On a more personal level, I have taken a hard look at my own lifestyle and the usage of fossil energy resources.  I would love to incorporate solar panels and a wind turbine at my home.  For the time being, I have changed all of my lightbulbs to CFLs, added solar lighting to my yard, added insulation to my home, and installed insulated drapes on my windows.  By using less energy, I hope to deny the energy companies of a little profit…

My driving habits have changed, too.  I am looking into leasing a Prius, although I don’t drive a lot, so my CO2 discharges aren’t excessive.  I combine trips and spend many days without using my car.  I wish I could use other ways of transportation – in a rural area it is hard to use public transportation or walk to many services.

Am I living greener? Definitely.  Perhaps I would anyway – I have always touted being an environmentalist.  Now it has become an absolute passion in my lifestyle.

Has gas drilling affected my diet?  I’ll leave that story for another day…


wake up to freedom

August 17, 2010

we are not hostage
to foreign oil

we are hostage
to ourselves


Come to GAS STOCK!

August 10, 2010
GAS STOCK

Environmental Concert – Festival – Rally

Free to the Public

NEPA Citizens in Action is sponsoring an Environmental Concert/Festival/Rally which is intended to bring light, education and political pressure on the Marcellus Shale gas well drilling situation in our communities.
The event will be held on August 21st, 2010 at the Luzerne County Fairgrounds in Lehman, PA from 12 noon until 7 pm. This is a family event, alcohol free and free to the public.
The event committee is seeking food and product vendors. Your product should contribute to a “green” lifestyle to be considered for inclusion. For further information, call Dorene at 570- 328-1551 or e-mail; Deedee7@epix.net
We are also seeking talented street performers and bands who are willing to donate their time for the cause. Please contact Roxie at or e-mail; Roxiep9@aol.com
We also welcome the participation of any organization concerned about the quality of life and future of water quality and availability here in PA. For information, call Mary at 570-676-4919 or e-mail; emhenzi@ptd.net
See you there!

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You are trailer trash until they need you

July 28, 2010

Goons
wanna bees
and baby
kissers,

they are in charge.

Users
bruisers
and the uninspired,

they call the shots.

Preppies
lawyer-ed
and uncaring,

see only themselves…

Do you love this world
and rejoice in it?

Or do you relish the smell of diesel?

Do you love
democracy?

Or do you love
this privileged form of governance?

(It seems the difference
between God and a fallen preacher.)