Friday, May 17, 2013
Francisco Miranda eluded law enforcement for 18 years in the 1994 South Bethlehem killing of Jorge Velazquez. Now, he will spend the next 10-20 years in prison.
A man who spent 18 years on Pennsylvania’s Most Wanted list pleaded guilty on Friday to a 1994 murder in a South Bethlehem parking lot. Francisco G. Miranda, 50, was sentenced to 10 to 20 years in state prison after pleading guilty to third-degree murder, according to published reports. Under the terms of a plea bargain, Miranda will serve the maximum sentence that would have been allowed at the time of the murder, according to The Morning Call. Miranda eluded authorities for 18 years while he lived in the Dominican Republic but he didn’t flee the country on his own, the newspaper reported. New Jersey officials unwittingly deported Miranda—just weeks after the Bethlehem homicide—after he was arrested on drug charges under an assumed name…
Thursday, May 16, 2013
Man walked into Bon-Ton at Westgate Mall, stuffed a garbage bag with Izod shirts and walked out, police say.
- POLICE & FIRE
Thursday, May 16
A man walked into the men’s department at The Bon-Ton at the Westgate Mall, took out a black garbage bag, stuffed it with about 50 Izod shirts, then walked out of the store, Bethlehem police said. Today, police released a surveillance photo of the man and is asking for the public’s help in finding the thief. The stolen shirts are valued at about $1,400. The incident occurred at about 1:45 p.m. Monday. Anyone with information is asked to call the Bethlehem Police Department at 610-865-7187.
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Ecstasy and cocaine found within reach of minor daughter of arrested couple, police say.
Bethlehem police raided a South Side home early Tuesday morning and arrested a man and a woman on multiple felony drug charges, law enforcement officials said. Police brought a search warrant to 1135½ E. Third St., the home of Ramon A. Headley, 29, and Desiree Helena Bostic, 24, as a result of an investigation into illegal narcotics sales, police said. The raid and search was done at a little after 6 a.m. Inside, police found quantities of marijuana, cocaine, heroin and ecstasy, police said. A child, the daughter of Headley and Bostic, was also inside the home and had the cocaine and ecstasy within her reach, according to an arrest affidavit. Police also found a .38-caliber pistol, cash, drug paraphernalia, gang-related paraphernalia, cell…
Monday, May 13, 2013
Law enforcement response to a domestic disturbance on 3rd Avenue leads to drug arrests, police say.
Bethlehem police called to a Third Avenue home for a domestic dispute found “large” amounts of marijuana and heroin, a stolen gun and $9,000 cash, police said. The drugs, gun and cash, along with two cars, a motorcycle, two more guns and drug paraphernalia were all seized as part of the investigation, police said. Alexander Bernardini, 42, 419 Third Ave., Bethlehem, was charged with multiple felony counts including three counts of possession with intent to deliver drugs, three counts of prohibited possession of firearms and one count of receiving stolen property. He was also charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and simple assault. Mildred Martinez, 32, of 1215 Livingston St., Bethlehem also was charged with two counts of …
Sunday, May 12, 2013
The older sister is charged with assault, resisting arrest after she kicked the side of a squad car after police took her into custody, according to court papers.
A woman came after her sister with a kitchen knife in a South Bethlehem apartment then resisted arrest after police arrived, according to court papers. Xesenia Vives Martinez, 24, of Philadelphia, kicked the side of a squad car as police tried to put her inside, causing a dent in the door and other damage, police wrote in an affidavit of probable cause. Police responded to a second-floor apartment at 1307 E. Fourth St. at a little after 4 p.m. Thursday on a report of women fighting with knives, according to the affidavit written by arresting Officer Joshua John Schnalzer. The victim, Martinez’s 23-year-old sister, told police that she disarmed Martinez, threw the knife and a fight followed, the affidavit says. During the fight, Martinez …
Hellertown man accused of stealing copper valves and engine parts from railroad cars and braided copper cable from decommissioned PPL transmission towers.
A Hellertown man made more than $35,000 in less than 10 months by selling scrap metal he—with some help—had stolen from railroad cars parked in South Bethlehem and decommissioned electrical transmission towers on South Mountain, Bethlehem police said. On Friday, Corey C. Merwarth, 34, of 13 E. Depot St., was arrested and charged with multiple felony theft and conspiracy counts and sent to prison in lieu of $20,000 bail. Court records say Merwarth is a "known heroin addict with an extensive criminal history." The investigation that led to Merwarth’s arrest began in September when Bethlehem police received a report from Lehigh Valley Rail Management that more than 700 copper valves had been stolen from railroad grain cars—also known as …
Thursday, May 9, 2013
14-year-old boy accused of stealing 3 guns in burglary. Man who bought one of them also faces felony charges.
A South Bethlehem man was arrested for buying a stolen pistol from a 14-year-old boy accused of stealing three guns and ammunition from an Amplex Street home in a Monday burglary, according to court papers and Bethlehem police. Miguel A. Torres, 27, of 218 Hobart St., was charged with two felonies for buying a stolen weapon. The 14-year-old, who was not identified because of his age, is also facing multiple charges, police said. The burglary of the home on Amplex Street occurred while the victim was at work, police said. Stolen were a 9mm handgun with magazine and bullets, a .22-caliber pistol and a 12-gauge shotgun, court papers said. The teenager was arrested on Tuesday, after he sold at least one of the weapons—the .22-caliber pistol…
Wednesday, May 8, 2013
19-year-old who has been charged with three summary crimes since January ran and resisted when police tried to apprehend him, court papers say.
Bethlehem police were forced to chase a teenager who ran when an officer tried to pick him up off the streets of the Marvine-Pembroke neighborhood on a warrant Wednesday afternoon, according to court papers. As a result, Nixon Joel Montalvo-Velez, 19, of 1370 Fritz Drive, is facing more serious charges of escape and resisting arrest and he is in prison. According to an arrest affidavit, Officer Erik M. Kaintz spotted Montalvo-Velez walking along the 1200 block of Woodbine Street at about 12:40 p.m. Kaintz stopped his patrol car, got out and instructed Montalvo-Velez to stay where he was. Instead, Montalvo-Velez turned his back and ran east toward a park and then south toward apartments on Eastwood Road, police said. More police officers …
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
E. 5th Street couple left 10-month-old daughter in care of a nephew and his friend. When they returned, infant was alone and cash, laptop and video game system was missing.
A South Bethlehem couple who left their 10-month-old daughter in the care of a nephew and his friend returned home to find their infant home alone and that they had been cleaned out of $1,500 cash, a laptop computer and a video game system, police said. The friend, William Torres-Approvato, 19, and listed as homeless on court documents, was arrested on Monday and charged with theft, receiving stolen property and endangering the welfare of children. The nephew, Dylan Bright, who according to court papers is also homeless, remains at large. The incident happened April 1 at about 8 p.m. when the victims, a couple who live on the 900 block of E. Fifth Street, decided to leave their daughter at home with Bright and Torres-Approvato so they …
Given $6,000 to renovate a bathroom in a Northeast Bethlehem home, a contractor took the money and paid personal debts, police say.
A contractor who was paid more than $6,000 to renovate a bathroom in Northeast Bethlehem used most of that money to pay off personal debt rather than for materials needed for the job, police said. Daniel N. Diaz, 42, of 5197 Spruce Road in Upper Milford Township, told police that he was “robbing Peter to pay Paul” in an effort to catch up to child support payments and other debts, according to an arrest affidavit. Diaz was arrested Tuesday and charged with home improvement fraud, theft and receiving stolen property—all felonies. He is free on $20,000 bail following his arraignment before District Judge James Narlesky. According to the arrest affidavit: