Note: now that the one-time left-of-center editorial page of the Post-Gazette has turned darkly Trumpist, we can no longer say that the Trib's editorial page is the "solitary" voice of wingnut conservatism in tahn.
Anyway, before heading over to the Trib's op-ed page at the Trib, I usually scan their front page. And today I found this rather troubling article:
Kittanning Council does not have the authority to remove a councilman from office despite charges he engaged in sexual contact with a disabled 14-year-old, Council President Kim Chiesa said Friday.Obviously, the case has yet to go to trial and so I will present no opinion as to the guilt or innocence of Pastor Croyle or of Mr. Feeney.
On Thursday, Council Vice President David John Croyle, 60, was arrested and charged with felony counts of statutory sexual assault, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, unlawful contact with a minor, aggravated indecent assault of a person with a mental disability, corruption of minors and related charges.
Croyle is the editor and publisher of the Kittanning Paper and senior pastor at the Family-Life Church on South Jefferson Street in Kittanning.
Also arrested and facing identical charges is Applewold Council President Mark Alan Feeney, 55, who also serves as chief of the East Franklin Township Fire Department and fire marshal for North Buffalo Township.
However, this story has an interesting twist that I've yet to see in the news. From KDKA, we learn this seeming innocuous detail:
Investigators tell KDKA the victim first met Croyle when he applied for a job at the Kittanning Paper.Remember that part - it will make sense very soon, I promise. I started to research The Kittanning Paper (circulation? ownership?) and found this:
The Reverend David Croyle has responded to an article appearing in today’s Leader-Times, citing an incident that occurred last June of stalking by a former employee.This was from 2015 and the mention of Pastor Croyle's criticism of one of the many Tribune-Review papers caught my interest. This is the article to which Croyle was responding. Here's how it opened:
According to court documents, charges were filed in the incident and the case was scheduled to go to court yesterday. However, Croyle said it was in the best interest of everyone to not continue with the trial and dropped charges.
“Our church and media organization teaches grace toward an individual who repents,” Croyle said. “It is unfortunate that the Trib news staff had to run an article that affected the lives of another person and myself in an incident where the District Attorney’s office was willing to dismiss the case. This damages reputations and does nothing to promote a sense of community in our county.”
A prominent Kittanning businessman and candidate for Armstrong County commissioner who claimed he was a victim of stalking and assault last year has dropped the charges against his alleged assailant.Again with no case, there'll be no opinion as to Zimmerman's guilt or innocence from me. However Mr. Zimmerman does show up again on the pages of the Trib a few months later:
The Rev. David Croyle dropped the charges against Charles E. Zimmerman III, 25, of Kittanning on Wednesday, two days after a jury was selected to hear the trial.
A Kittanning man has been accused of stalking, harassing and threatening a public official for the third time in about a year.I hope you noted presence of the name "Mark Feeney" in the story. So Mr. Zimmerman was accused of stalking Croyle (charges were dropped) and then accused of stalking Mr. Feeney. Guess what? Croyle shows up in that story, with a curious tidbit of information:
Charles E. Zimmerman, 25, of Kittanning was charged this month with several misdemeanors following a complaint filed with police by Mark Feeney of Applewold. The former Applewold president and East Franklin fire chief told police that Zimmerman had threatened him several times recently.
“It's crazy,” Feeney said. “I'm not the first person he did this to. It's just a sad situation. It really is.”So a few years ago both Croyle and Feeney were stalked by a one-time employee of the Kittanning Paper and now in 2018 they're both arrested for allegedly assaulting a 14 year old who allegedly met Croyle when the teenager applied for a job at the Kittanning Paper.
The Rev. David Croyle, a Kittanning councilman, in March dropped charges against Zimmerman days before a trial began for criminal trespass, stalking, simple assault and harassment. The charges were related to alleged incidents about a year ago. Croyle, president of Family-Life Media-Com and publisher of the Kittanning Paper, declined to comment about the case.
Croyle had employed Zimmerman and was his landlord at the time charges were filed in 2014.
Am I the only one who noticed this? I haven't seen that reported yet - that's all I am saying.