NEWS Saturday, May 28 - Friday, June 3, 2011
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Coudersport attorney, others
charged in plot to buy newborn
A bizarre criminal case in Potter County
has ﬁnally been made public. It involves
a conspiracy to purchase two local babies
from their expectant mothers.
According to the Attorney General’s
ofﬁce, ﬁve suspects have been arrested and
charged with participating in a plot to buy
a baby and adopt the child out to family
Central ﬁgure in the case is a Coud-
ersport attorney Jarett R. Smith, who Jarrett Smith
coincidentally was just disciplined by the
Pennsylvania Supreme Court for unrelated
Also facing charges are Smith’s ex-wife,
Donna Albright-Smith, 38, also an attorney
who once practiced in Coudersport; as well
as his brother and wife, Jerome and Eileen
Nearly 100 children 12 and under took Smith, both 44, of Overland Park, Kansas.
part in the second First Fork Fishing Club Acting Attorney General Bill Ryan said
ﬁshing derby held at the Austin Dam Me- that Albright-Smith and her ex-husband Donna Smith
morial Park. Dawson Hooftallen, the son Jarrett Smith allegedly solicited Krista
of Terry and Rhoda Hooftallen of Austin, Eveland to sell them her unborn child so
was among the lucky anglers who land- that Jarrett Smith’s brother and sister-in-
ed a lunker. The event once again turned law could adopt the baby.
out to be a huge success with all children According to the criminal complaint
going home with prizes donated by doz- Jerome Smith and his wife Eileen were
ens of sponsors. To learn more about the
First Fork Fishing Club, visit their website, hoping to adopt a child when they were
Tom Glasl (right), chief ﬁnancial ofﬁcer for Good- approached by Donna Albright-Smith
ﬁrstforkﬁshingclub.org or ﬁnd them on will Industries of Northcentral Pennsylvania, was
FaceBook. on hand for an informal opening of the Good-
who told them she knew of a mother who
will collection shed in Coudersport Monday. Also wanted to put her child up for adoption.
attending were Ben Fye (middle), organizational Charges state that Jerome and Eileen Krista Eveland
trainer; Sue Whitney, employment specialist; and Smith paid for Eveland’s pregnancy plac-
local part-time staffers David Knowlton (left), ing several thousand dollars into a trust
SUMMERTIME! Charles Shafer and Nathan Marble. fund to reimburse her for “necessary expenses.” The Smiths
also allegedly gave Eveland cash at least once a week for
gas and groceries, and also paid her rent, car insurance, car
Memorial Day events repairs and electric bills.
kick off the season Goodwill comes According to the criminal complaint, in addition to taking
care of her expenses, Jerome and Eileen Smith agreed to pay
the Eveland a ﬁnal cash payment of $4,000 to $6,000 after
Communities around the region will hold
traditional Memorial Day observances on
to Coudersport See ARRESTED Pg. 3
Memorial Day, formerly known as Decora- Goodwill Industries has come to Coudersport, giving
tion Day, commemorates U.S. soldiers who area residents an easy means of donating items to help
died while in the military service. First en- the less fortunate.
acted following the Civil War, it was extended Spokesman Tom Glasl assisted with the opening day
after World War I to honor Americans who of the Goodwill donation shed which is positioned in
have died in all wars. the parking lot behind the Coudersport Post Ofﬁce,
By the middle of the 20th century, Memo- bordering North West and West Third streets.
rial Day was an occasion for more general Owners Todd and Micki Brown have donated use of
expressions of memory, as ordinary people the lot until a Goodwill store can be opened downtown,
visited the graves of their deceased loved possibly before year’s end.
ones, whether they had served in the military Donations of clothing, furniture, kitchen utensils and
or not. other items are welcome. Initially, three part-time atten-
Memorial Day often marks the start of the dants have been hired to accept donations at the shed
summer vacation season and Labor Day its each day from 11 am to 7 pm.
end. Glasl said the goal is to gather, over time, enough
Here’s a summary of each community’s stock to start a local store. Goodwill will cover costs of
Memorial Day observance schedule: utilities and site maintenance.
Coudersport: Lineup for the parade is Glasl emphasized that Goodwill will complement
at 10:30 am on Oak Street. Veterans, youth the impressive efforts of the all-volunteer Christmas
groups and other marching units are invited. House, which provides Christmas gifts and year-‘round
The parade steps off at 11 and will proceed to assistance for families in need.
the courthouse square, where the ceremony Donors with questions can call Jason Marshall at
will follow with Norma Cobb Nichols, long- Goodwill, 814-371-2821.
time leader of the Post 192 American Legion
Auxiliary and community volunteer, as the
Fascination with the Austin ﬂood of 1911 extends far
Emporium: Cameron County Memorial beyond the region’s borders. Country music stars Willie
Detail will be heading up the Memorial Day Nelson and Charlie Daniels have both taken an inter-
parade. Formation starts at 9 am at the Vets
Club and Olivett’s. Veterans who would pre-
fer to ride on the ﬂoat, rather than marching,
should be at the formation no later than 9:30.
CLOSE TO HOME est in the story, thanks to the efforts of two local au-
thors whose complementary books on the topic are
about to be released. Gale Largey (inset with Nelson)
recruited Nelson as narrator of his 1999 documentary
Anyone who would like to be in the parade
should call Barry Sarick at 486-7954. Speaker Gas wells in Coudersport of the ﬂood and has followed that with a book that
spotlights newspaper coverage of the disaster from
around the world. Paul Heimel (top, left) discussed
will be Gary Kamats, an Army veteran of the
Vietnam War. There will be a luncheon for
participants after the parade at the Vets Club.
Borough causing concern with Daniels the possibility of writing a song based on
the ﬂood and the musician has since asked for back-
ground material to assess. Heimel’s new book, “1911:
Austin: Marchers and parade units will After witnessing a bright vironmental impact of another The Austin Flood,” is being billed as the authoritative
assemble at the school for lineup no later than natural gas drilling rig lighting natural gas drilling plan slated account of the tragedy.
10:15. The parade will step off at 10:30. A up the night sky over Couder- for a forested hilltop area near
service will begin at 11 am at the Veterans’ sport Borough, some residents the northern ridge overlooking
Memorial on the town square. Guest speaker took their concerns to this East Second Street in Coud-
will be State Representative Martin Causer. A month’s Borough Council ersport.
luncheon will follow at the ﬁrehall. meeting. Penn Virginia Corporation
Citing the close proximity received state permits to drill
of Marcellus Shale natural gas the two wells in the Niles Hill
GOOD AND BAD drilling on Niles Hill to one
of the borough’s public water
supplies, they inquired as to
area. The Pa. Dept. of Envi-
ronmental Protection (DEP),
which issued the drilling
Two authors set to release
Turnover of county whether the borough had com-
missioned a thorough testing
permits, refers to the sites as
Northeast Timberlands A 1H books on Austin Dam disaster
employees sign of times of water quality to serve as a
baseline in case contamina-
and A 2H.
Penn Virginia has also
A pair of notable books that capture the history of the
Austin ﬂood are heading to the press – just in time for the
tion occurred that could be drilled three wells in Allegany centennial observance marking the tragic dam failure of
Private-sector employers connected with the attributed to the drilling. Township, north of Couders-
growing natural gas industry have been pluck- Sept. 30, 1911.
The response was “no.” port, two on the Risser farm Advance orders are now being taken for local author Paul
ing employees from the Potter County govern- Borough ofﬁcials have since and a third on the Dunn farm.
ment with offers of higher pay. W. Heimel’s latest title, “1911: The Austin Flood” (Knox
arranged for a battery of tests Penn Virginia is one of the Books), which is being billed as the authoritative story of
The situation was acknowledged at last to establish the water qual- bigger players in the region,
week’s meeting of the Board of Commission- the ﬂood, complete with a series of eyewitness accounts in a
ity baseline prior to the next with ambitious plans for section titled, “They Were There.” See ordering information
ers, as two more workers jumped ship. stage of the drilling process, gas production in townships
Board Chairman Doug Morley said the below.
which is hydraulic fractur- surrounding Coudersport, Also on press is historian Gale Largey’s work, “The Austin
county had been anticipating the situation ing. That technique entails including a major lease of
since signs of the gas rush began to appear in Disaster, 1911: As Reported in the Media Before Radio,
the high-pressure injection of state forest land. The com- Television and the Internet.” Largey, who produced a popular
2008, and ofﬁcials have been grooming suc- millions of gallons of wa- pany submitted the high bid
cessors as part of an effort to “promote from video focused on the 1911 ﬂood in 1999, has produced a cof-
ter, combined with sand and of $13.9 million on 3,640 fee-table style hardback that’s heavy on quality photographs,
within and develop a succession plan for some chemicals, to create ﬁssures in acres in Eulalia and Roulette
departments.” spotlighting newspaper coverage of the disaster from around
shale formations roughly one townships. The state will also the world.
“We’ve been focused on building inter- mile underground and release receive 18 percent of produc-
nally,” Morley said. “And it has paid dividends The books are complementary – Heimel’s as a history
natural gas. tion royalties. During the volume that tells the story as thoroughly as it has ever been
because we have good people underneath who Some residents believe the same round of state forest land
step up to the challenge.” told, and Largey’s as a limited-edition collector’s item heavy
testing should have taken leasing, Seneca Resources on graphics.
Letters of resignation were accepted from place prior to the initial drill- of Houston, Texas, was high
David Knowles, director of buildings and That’s no coincidence, as the two authors collaborated to
ing. There is also concern bidder on 7,440 acres between make sure their works were in sync, rather than competing
grounds, and Joe Gerhart, geographic informa- being expressed by some Denton Hill and Fox Hill, of-
citizens about the possible en- fering $23.3 million.
See TURNOVER Pg. 3 See BOOKS | Pg. 3
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