Boeing Receives $265 Million Chinook Helicopter Order from U.S. Army Special Operations


First Block II Chinook for the Army Special Operations Aviation Command will be delivered this year

PHILADELPHIA, PA (STL.NewsBoeing [NYSE: BA] recently signed a $265 million contract for nine more MH-47G Block II Chinook helicopters that employees in its Philadelphia plant will assemble for the U.S. Army Special Operations Aviation Command (USASOAC).

Boeing is now on contract for 24 of the next-generation Chinooks. The MH-47G Block II Chinook features an improved structure and weight reduction initiatives like new lighter weight fuel pods that increase performance, efficiency, and commonality across the fleet.  The new Chinooks will give the Army significantly more capability for extremely challenging missions.

“The G-Model is a critical asset for the Army, our nation, and the defense industrial base,” said Andy Builta, vice president and H-47 program manager.  “We’re honored that the Army’s special operators trust us to deliver it.”

Boeing has more than 4,600 Boeing employees in Pennsylvania supporting H-47 Chinook, V-22 Osprey, MH-139A Grey Wolf and a number of services and engineering efforts.  Boeing’s presence, including suppliers and vendors, supports an estimated 16,000 total jobs in Pennsylvania.



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Alaska Doctor Andrew J. Van Atta Sentenced For Wire Fraud


(STL.News) – U.S. Attorney Peter G. Strasser announced that Dr. Andrew J. Van Atta, age 37, from Wasilla, Alaska, was sentenced today to three years of probation for a fraudulent scheme in which VAN ATTA impersonated other doctors while submitting paid surveys.

VAN ATTA pled guilty on November 18, 2019, to the one-count indictment that charged him with committing wire fraud from January of 2017 through May of 2018.  According to court documents, starting in January of 2017, when VAN ATTA was a medical student, and continuing after he graduated, VAN ATTA used multiple email accounts and PayPal accounts to impersonate numerous other physicians while filling out surveys with a survey company that paid VAN ATTA for surveys that the victim company believed were completed by various other physicians.  The company paid VAN ATTA a total of over $114,000 for the surveys completed under the fake names.

Judge Susie Morgan sentenced VAN ATTA to three years of probation.  Judge Morgan will hold a restitution hearing for October 27, 2020.

U.S. Attorney Strasser praised the work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Assistant United States Attorney Nicholas D. Moses is in charge of the prosecution.

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Randolph County man Jack Carl Rice sentenced for child porn charge


(STL.News) – Jack Carl Rice, of Elkins, West Virginia, was sentenced today to 57 months incarceration for a child pornography charge, U.S. Attorney Bill Powell announced.

Rice, age 62, pled guilty to one count of “Possession of Child Pornography” in February 2020.  Rice admitted to having images of child pornography depicting minors under the age of 12 in January 2018 in Harrison County.

Assistant U.S. Attorney David J. Perri prosecuted the case on behalf of the government.  The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the West Virginia State Police, and the Bridgeport Police Department investigated.

U.S. District Judge Thomas S. Kleeh presided.

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Randolph County man Eric Allen Harris sentenced for methamphetamine charge


(STL.News) – Eric Allen Harris, of Beverly, West Virginia, was sentenced today to 36 months incarceration for a drug distribution charge, U.S. Attorney Bill Powell announced.

Harris, age 40, pled guilty to one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine” in June 2019.  Harris admitted to distributing methamphetamine, also known as “ice,” in September 2018 in Randolph County.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen D. Warner prosecuted the case on behalf of the government.  The Mountain Region Drug & Violent Crime Task Force investigated.

The investigation was funded by the federal Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force Program (OCDETF).  OCDETF was established in 1982 to conduct comprehensive, multilevel attacks on major drug trafficking and money laundering organizations and is the keystone of the Department of Justice’s drug reduction strategy.  Today, OCDETF combines the resources and expertise of its member federal agencies in cooperation with state and local law enforcement.  The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking organizations, transnational criminal organizations, and money laundering organizations that present a significant threat to the public safety, economic, or national security of the United States.

U.S. District Judge Thomas S. Kleeh presided.

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Harrison County man Matthew Scott Collins sentenced for firearms charges


(STL.News) – Matthew Scott Collins, of Stonewood, West Virginia, was sentenced today to 84 months incarceration for a firearms charges, U.S. Attorney Bill Powell announced.

Collins, age 37, pled guilty to one count of “Possession of Stolen Firearm” in January 2020.  Collins admitted to having a .22 caliber rifle, a 9mm pistol, and a .223 caliber rifle in Barbour County in July 2018. All three firearms are stolen.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen D. Warner prosecuted the case on behalf of the government.  The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigated.

U.S. District Judge Thomas S. Kleeh presided.

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Upshur County man Jason Benton Barcus admits to methamphetamine distribution


(STL.News) – Jason Benton Barcus, of Ellamore, West Virginia, has admitted to methamphetamine distribution, U.S. Attorney Bill Powell announced.

Barcus, age 40, pled guilty to one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute 50 grams or more of Methamphetamine.”  Barcus admitted to distributing 50 grams or more of methamphetamine in March 2019 in Upshur County.

Barcus faces not less than ten years and up to life incarceration and a fine of up to $10,000,000.  Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Brandon Flower is prosecuting the case on behalf of the government.  The Mountain Lakes Drug & Violent Crimes Task Force investigated.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael John Aloi presided.

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Gary W. Bornman Admits Robbing Banks in East Haven and Windsor Locks


Gary W. Bornman Admits Robbing Banks in East Haven and Windsor Locks While on Federal Supervised Release

(STL.News) – John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that Gary W. Bornman, 58, of New Haven, waived his right to be indicted and pleaded guilty today to two counts of bank robbery and admitted that he violated the conditions of his supervised release from a prior federal case.

Pursuant to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), the guilty plea proceeding occurred via videoconference.

According to court documents and statements made in court, on October 29, 2019, Bornman drove a female accomplice to the Citizens Bank located at 430 Foxon Boulevard in East Haven.  While Bornman waited outside, his accomplice entered the bank wearing a disguise and a red wig, approached a teller, and demanded money.  The teller handed over approximately $1,003.

On January 27, 2020, Bornman drove a male accomplice to the People’s United Bank located at 20 Main Street in East Windsor. While Bornman waited outside, his accomplice entered the bank, approached a teller and showed a note demanding money.  The teller hand over approximately $1,056.  Bornman’s car was captured on surveillance video from a nearby business.

In June 2001, Bornman was sentenced in Hartford federal court to 235 months of imprisonment, followed by five years of supervised release, for bank robbery and firearm possession offenses.  He was released from prison in October 2018.

Bornman has been detained since February 12, 2020, when he was arrested for violating his supervised release.

Bornman is scheduled to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge Robert N. Chatigny on October 27, 2020, at which time he faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 40 years on the bank robbery offenses, and additional penalties for violating the conditions of his supervised release.

This investigation is being conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. Marshals Service, East Haven Police Department and Windsor Locks Police Department.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anastasia E. King.

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Kaenon A. Constantin from Rayne Sentenced for Transporting Illegally


Kaenon A. Constantin from Rayne Sentenced for Transporting Illegally Killed Endangered Whooping Crane

(STL.News) – United States Attorney David C. Joseph announced that Kaenon A. Constantin, 28, was sentenced on July 30, 2020, to five years of probation for killing and transporting a federally protected and endangered whooping crane.  During his period of probation, Constantin must complete 360 hours of community service related to wildlife conservation.  As part of the sentence, Constantin’s hunting privileges have been suspended until he completes the community service.  United States Magistrate Judge Hanna also ordered Constantin to pay a $10,000 fine and to pay $75,000 in restitution to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF).

In November 2019, Constantin was named in a federal bill of information for violating the Lacey Act in May 2016.  Specifically, on May 20, 2016, Constantin and a juvenile, using .22 caliber rifles, shot at a pair of whooping cranes located in a field within Acadia Parish, Louisiana.  One of the cranes, identified as L5-15, fell dead in the field, and Constantin and his accomplice retrieved its carcass. The other crane, identified as L3-15, flew too far north into another field so that it could not be retrieved, but investigators later recovered its carcass.

After retrieving L5-15’s carcass, they noticed that it had transponders on its legs and received information that the bird was a whooping crane.  Constantin and the juvenile transported the carcass to the juvenile’s residence, where they severed the legs from L5-15’s carcass by using a knife and removed the transponders.  They then transported the knife, carcass, severed legs, and transponders along a nearby road and discarded the evidence.  When initially approached by investigators shortly after the crime, Constantin lied about his involvement, causing the investigation to continue for nearly two more years before he finally confessed in April 2018.

The Lacey Act is a comprehensive federal law that protects against wildlife crimes, such as international and domestic wildlife trafficking.  The Act prohibits, among other actions, a person from knowingly transporting wildlife, when in the exercise of due care the person should have known that the wildlife was taken or possessed in violation of, or in a manner unlawful under, any underlying law, treaty, or regulation of the United States.  Whooping cranes are a federally protected species under federal laws and regulations, including the Endangered Species Act.  They are large birds, standing nearly five feet tall and with wingspans of 7.5 feet.

United States Fish and Wildlife Service Acting Special Agent in Charge Stephen Clark stated, “We take our mission partnering with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries in conserving, protecting, and enhancing fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats very seriously. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Office of Law Enforcement, considers the illegal taking of protected wildlife species a high priority, and we will continue to work closely with our state agencies to assist them in these important joint investigations.”

“Our agents take any investigation of illegally shooting whooping cranes very seriously.  Chief of LDWF Enforcement Col.  Chad Hebert and I applaud the judge in this case for imposing severe monetary punishments to help deter anyone from this behavior,” said LDWF Secretary Jack Montoucet.  “The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has spent a lot of resources in an effort to bring back the native whooping crane to a sustainable population, and senseless shootings like this case make that mission much more problematic.”

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Mass gathering along SW 3rd Avenue includes speeches


Portland, OR (STL.News) During the evening hours of July 30, 2020 a group of a few hundred people gathered along SW 3rd Avenue and gave speeches for a few hours outside the Justice Center and Mark O. Hatfield U.S. Federal Courthouse.

At times people lit small fires along sidewalks on surrounding blocks and attempted to light fires inside the fence at the federal courthouse. Others in the crowd put the fires out.  Some people climbed on or near the fence at the federal courthouse, but others admonished them and they got down.  People could be heard in the crowd repeating that the protest was to remain peaceful.

By about 1:00 a.m. on July 31, 2020 most of the speeches had ended.  The larger group broke in to smaller groups and over the next hour or two people dispersed without police interaction.

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Former Prison Guard Addie Isaac Reid Indicted For Trying To Smuggle Contraband


Former Prison Guard Addie Isaac Reid Indicted For Trying To Smuggle Contraband Into Dauphin County Prison

(STL.News) – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that a former Dauphin County Prison guard, Addie Isaac Reid, age 24, of Harrisburg, PA, was indicted on July 2, 2020, for bribery related to trying to smuggle a cellular telephone into Dauphin County Prison for inmates.  At the time, Reid was a prison guard at the facility.  The case was unsealed following Reid’s initial appearance before United States District Court Judge Sylvia H. Rambo.

According to United States Attorney David J. Freed, the indictment alleges that between August and September 2019, Reid used a cellular telephone to arrange for a meeting where he could receive a bribe.  Reid then met with an undercover officer where he accepted a bribe to smuggle a cellular telephone into Dauphin County Prison.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation with the assistance of Dauphin County Prison and the Dauphin County Criminal Investigation Division.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Consiglio is prosecuting the case.

Indictments and Criminal Informations are only allegations.  All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.

A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

The maximum penalty under federal law for this offense is five years of imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine.  Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant’s educational, vocational and medical needs.  For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.

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