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Weird Pittsburgh

News of the weird from all over Western Pennsylvania

Johnstown Wire Technologies is denying internet rumors that the employees present when Hillary Clinton visited were actually plants bussed in by the Democratic nominee’s campaign. Commenters on news station WJAC’s Facebook posts claimed the July 30 event “was all staged,” in the words of one MaryAnn Versmessen of Greensburg. “She even brought in her own people to be bystanders.” A replier said she’d heard actual employees were barred from the wire factory because of a “security issue.” Jim Barber, a manager at the company, told the Tribune-Democrat newspaper that the rumors are “craziness.” He said that the Clinton campaign approached the company for a tour. (Barack Obama visited the facility in 2008, as did both major-party candidates in the 2014 race for governor.) Employees had the option of attending but were not obligated. Some did, and a usual cadre of staffers and media followed Clinton through the building. No “fake” workers were bussed in, Barber said. However, in a Facebook post shared by the group Citizens for Trump, Craig Bernat, a Mineral Point man who often reposts right-wing memes, claimed he saw a post from someone who said her son-in-law said that “like 6-8 bus loads of kafe worker showed!!” (presumably he meant to type “fake”), so there’s that.

Shortly after 8 p.m., several people walking by One Enchanted Evening, a bridal shop on Zelienople’s Main Street, spotted a man “fully naked, no shoes, shirt, pants or anything,” standing next to the window-display mannequins, according to an arrest record obtained by the Cranberry Eagle. Police allegedly found co-owner Peter Scolieri, visibly drunk, in the store and matched him to a cell-phone photo a passerby took of the exhibitionist. The website for the boutique, which also offers attire for proms and pageants, states it “is aware of an incident … involving a minority owner of the company,” who has “taken an indefinite leave of absence.”

Though apparently estranged from her family, 62-year-old Suzanne Troy showed up at the Beinhauer Funeral Home in Pittsburgh for her sister’s service. Tracey Schweitzer, an off-duty city police officer and niece to both Troy and the deceased, tried to intervene, telling Troy it was the woman’s wish she not be at her funeral. “[I]n front of the casket, Troy lifted her dress and told Schweitzer to kiss her [expletive],” according to court documents obtained by KDKA. A brawl between the two women reportedly spilled out into the funeral-home hallway and both were arrested. 

A 911 dispatcher received a frantic call from Mark Huellen reporting six men on his rooftop trying to break in. Police didn’t find a squad of invaders at the Scott Township house where Huellen was staying. They did apparently find meth — lots and lots of meth. Police told WPXI the house contained $20,000 worth of the drug, plus $6,000 in cash. Accused of dealing, Huellen, 40, apparently got so high off his own supply that he busted himself (and three associates) by hallucinating a mirage real and threatening-seeming enough to call 911.

A Ross Park Mall security guard accidentally shot his friend in the butt at the shopping center. KDKA reports that, while the mall does not require security staff to be armed, the employee brought his personal Glock — in case of a standoff at the Cheesecake Factory or something — and accidentally pulled the trigger while loading it, lodging one bullet in his friend’s rear. The man was released from the hospital that night. The guard was not charged with a crime, but he is out of a job.

Jamie Jon Harris apparently couldn’t accept it was over, so the 46-year-old Westmoreland County man allegedly sent his ex-girlfriend more than 6,000 text messages and left 200-plus voicemails in a nine-month span, police told WPXI. Some of the messages included threats, according to police, including one that read: “I’m coming to ur house after work and kill your parents and whole family.” (Harris apparently wanted her to think he was consumed by homicidal rage, but not enough to miss work over it.)

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