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Authorities probe death of man killed in blast



Published: Thu, August 15, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



Authorities probe deathof man killed in blast

NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- Authorities in New York are investigating the death of a man who was killed during a fireworks explosion. Police said the fireworks originated from Zambelli Fireworks Internationale here.

Authorities believe it was an accident but are still investigating, said Michael Orrego, a senior investigator with the New York State Police. State police, Newburgh, N.Y., Police and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms are assisting in the investigation.

Orrego said Angelo Marafioti, 63, of Hopewell Junction, N.Y., was killed by an explosion Aug. 6 as he was unloading fireworks into a former military bunker in Newburgh. Police said the bunker is used by Zambelli to store pyrotechnics.

Orrego said the fireworks were from a show in Rye, N.Y., that had been canceled Aug. 5 because of bad weather. Police suspect static electricity ignited fireworks and caused the explosion. Marafioti was working alone, Orrego said.

Seeking cause of fire

NEW CASTLE, Pa. -- Officials are investigating an Epworth Street fire. Firefighters said a two-story house caught fire on the first floor about 12:30 p.m. Wednesday. The house is owned by Fredericka Bell who used 407 Epworth as a rental property.

Firefighters said Bell lives in another home on Epworth Street. No damage estimate was available. The name of the occupant, who was home when the blaze started, was not available this morning.

Sentenced in rape case

YOUNGSTOWN -- A judge sentenced a city man to nine years in prison Wednesday after the man pleaded guilty to rape. Gollin Freeman, 27, had sexual contact with a 7-year-old girl in March 1999, said Deena Calabrese, an assistant prosecutor. Judge James C. Evans of Mahoning County Common Pleas Court gave Freeman credit for time he spent in the county jail awaiting trial.

Arrested in attack

SHARON, Pa. -- Police arrested two more women suspected in an attack Sunday on an East Budd Street man.

Police said Latesha Hubbard, 24, of Sharon, and Terika Hubbard, 21, of Hermitage, surrendered to police Wednesday afternoon. Police believe they were part of a group of five or six women who kicked in a man's door, beat him up and then threw a potted plant through his window.

Police said the matter stemmed from an ongoing custody dispute one of the women had with the man, who is in his 20s. He was not seriously hurt, police said.

Two other women were arrested earlier this week. All four are charged with burglary, simple assault, criminal mischief and criminal conspiracy and have preliminary hearings pending.

Multiple charges

GREENVILLE, Pa. -- A Franklin Street man remained in jail this morning on charges of burglary, rape, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, indecent assault and simple assault.

Greenville-West Salem Police arrested Timothy Minner, 19, on Tuesday. His preliminary hearing is set for 2 p.m. Aug. 22 before District Justice William Fagley. Police said Winner went through the window in the home of a former acquaintance about 3 a.m. Monday and assaulted a 22-year-old woman. Minner's bond was set at $20,000.

Hearing postponed

STRUTHERS -- The preliminary hearing of Christopher Gentile, 29, of Clingan Road, has been postponed until Sept. 4. He had been scheduled to appear in court Monday on charges of conveying drugs into a detention facility.

Gentile was charged in July after Struthers police confiscated a tablet of OxyContin that they said Gentile had hidden in his sock when he was booked into Struthers jail on drug charges filed by the Mahoning County Drug Task Force.

Gentile also had been arrested June 1 after authorities executed search warrants at his Poland home and the Struthers residence of his father and seized suspected cocaine, drug processing equipment and weapons, including a machine gun with a silencer.




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