Sgt. Daniel from the Ridgway-based Pennsylvania State Police attended the Jay Township Supervisors meeting yesterday evening to see if residents had any concerns that he could address and to also provide an update on crime trends in the area.
"From a township standpoint, looking back over the past three months we've had about 50 or so incidents down here. Nothing real critical, a lot of incidents where people just can't get along, disturbances of that sort. We had a couple thefts, minor odds and ends, but compared to last year in the same time frame we're actually down about 20 incidents, which is a good thing," Daniel said.
He noted that, all-in-all, things have been going well in the township.
Meeting attendees questioned him about the prevalence of camp break-ins this year, and he explained that a number of those break-ins could be attributed to two individuals.
"We had a large amount of break-ins, especially right over here in Benezette and up north. We had two boys, two brothers as a matter of fact, the Aiello brothers. We had a major operation where we had some guys go undercover and do some surveillance. We had a lot going on with that. I can't get into some of the specifics with that operation, but we were able to make some arrests on that, and it spanned over several counties," Daniel said.
He added that the case kept him and his fellow officers really busy.
"We've had, I think, 66 various counts filed against the Aiello brothers, just in Elk County. I think we've had another 20 over out in Cameron and about maybe another 20 up in McKean, and that's what we're going with right now. It's a major undertaking, so yes we've had our hands full," Daniel said.
One of the residents at the meeting remarked that incidents such as the break-ins give township residents a bad reputation; however, Daniel remarked that he did not believe that to be the case.
"It doesn't matter where you go, you're always going to have some bad apples out there perpetrating these things. Fortunately we were able to get through and get some work done on these things, which was fruitful and we were able to make some arrests on this," Daniel said.
He added that he was "real proud" of his fellow officers for the effort they put into the matter.
"The station as a whole really pulled together and the guys really did a bang-up job to make these arrests happen," Daniel said.