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Five enter guilty pleas

Published July 13. 2012 05:01PM

Five defendants in pending criminal cases entered guilty pleas on Thursday in Carbon County court while two defendants ,who previously pleaded guilty, were sentenced.

The cases were heard by Judge Joseph J. Matika.

Palmerton incident

Ryan Rehrig, 32, of Walnutport, and formerly of Palmerton, pleaded guilty in two pending cases.

He pleaded to one count of recklessly endangering another person for an incident at his then residence in Palmerton where police were called in March for a report of drug activity. On scene police found illegal substances, needles, and other paraphernalia in the home along with Rehrig's then girlfriend, Leanna Altemose, and their two children, ages four and one.

In the second case he pleaded to one count each of simple assault and resisting arrest for another incident at the residence. Altemose accused him of assaulting her. When police attempted to take him into custody he resisted and had to be physically subdued.

On the recklessly endangering charge Matika sentenced him to serve thee to one day less 24 months in the county prison. He was also ordered to render 100 hours of community service, get a drug and alcohol (D&A) evaluation and follow any recommendation for treatment, zero tolerance imposed on D&A use, attend anger management classes, and attend parenting classes.

On the simple assault charge the same sentence was imposed concurrent to the first count. On the resisting arrest charge he was placed on probation for a year, consecutive to the other charges.

He was give credit for 95 days spent in jail to date on the charges and immediately paroled. He won't be release until a preparole plan is approved by the adult probation office.

Anthony James Capaldo, 21, of Summerset, N.J., pleaded to one count of theft. He was arrested by state police at Lehighton on Jan. 2, 2011, at the Blue Mountain Ski Resort in Lower Towamensing Township, for stealing three snowboards.

Matika sentenced him to time served (27 days) to one year in jail and ordered he render 50 hours of community service. The snowboards were all recovered.

Dylan Brett Danko, 20, of Weatherly, pleaded in two pending cases. He pleaded to one count of possession of drug paraphernalia for an incident near the Weatherly Plaza in December 2011. The pleaded to one count of loitering and prowling at night for an incident along Plane St., in Weatherly, also in December.

Matika deferred sentencing because of a question concerning restitution for damages to a vehicle in the second case.

Daniel D. Leitzel, 44, of Pottsville, pleaded to one count each of driving under the influence (DUI) and driving while under suspension-DUI related. He was arrested on April 12, 2011, in Beaver Meadows after being involved in a hit and run accident. Give a test, the result was .17BAC.

Prior to starting the proceeding Matika asked Leitzel if he had been drinking prior to coming to court. Court personnel detected the odor of alcohol on Leitzel. He told Matika he had been drinking the night before but stopped around midnight. Leitzel was then taken to the adult probation office for a breath test which revealed a .06BAC.

Matika told Leitzel was was "very close" to the legal limit in the state for driving a vehicle. The judge also wondered while the alcohol level was still high if the defendant's last drink was a midnight. Matika also noted that Leitzel failed to complete a inpatient rehabilitation program.

Matika said, "It's obvious you have a very serious alcohol abuse problem which he have failed to address." Matika denied a request by defense Attorney Paul Levy to run the mandatory sentences concurrently.

On the DUI charge Matika sentenced Leitzel to serve 30 days to six months in prison, fine of $750, license suspended for 18 months, get a D&A evaluation, zero tolerance for D&A use, and make total restitution for damages of $5,851.69.

On the suspension count he was sentenced to serve 60 days in jail, a fine of $500, and another year suspension, all consecutive.

He began the jail term immediately.

Rebekah Joy Shubrick, 21, of Lehighton, pleaded in two pending cases. She pleaded to one count of possession of a small amount of marijuana for an incident stemming from a vehicle stop in which state police found marijuana in the vehicle. That occurred around Jan. 5.

She also pleaded to one count of possession of drug paraphernalia for an incident when police were called to her home by her father who told them she had illegal drugs in her bedroom. That was around Jan. 20.

She is currently in the county prison serving a sentence on a probation violation.

On the first possession count Matika placed her on probation for 30 days and ordered her to render 50 hours of community service, get a D&A evaluation, and zero tolerance for D&A use.

On the second possession count she was placed on probation for a year, concurrent with the first count.


Troy Lee Mamuzich, 21, of Bethlehem, was sentenced to serve two to 12 months in the county prison on a charge of corruption of a minor.

He was arrested by state police at Lehighton for an incident at the BZ-Bee in Bowmanstown. He was involved in the entry of the property in which 25 cartons of cigarettes and $400 in U.S. currency was taken. There were two other defendants in the incident, including a juvenile, which led to the corruption charge.

Matika also ordered him to get both a D&A and mental health evaluations, make restitution of $466.66, zero tolerance imposed on D&A use, and when released from jail render 50 hours of community service. The prison term runs concurrent with a term he is now serving in Northampton County. He was given three days credit for time spent in the Carbon County prison.

Kerri A. Blasko, 44, of Nesquehoning, was sentenced to serve one to 23 months in the county prison on charges of theft by failure to make required distribution of funds, and receiving stolen property.

She was arrested by Palmerton police for an incident in which she was the executor of an estate and received a payment but failed to properly deposit it.

Matika also ordered she make restitution of $6,752.85 to the law firm of Strubinger and Gazo, and render 100 hours of community service.

She will begin serving the jail term on Monday, July 16, at 8 a.m., and serve it on consecutive Mondays to Wednesdays.

Each defendant sentenced must also pay court costs, which average close to $1,000, and a $50 per month supervision fee while on probation or parole.

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