The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Local News

February 26, 2014

Judge believes man changed his life

FARRELL — Defendants facing criminal sentences always try to present their best faces, Mercer County Common Pleas Court Judge Robert G. Yeatts said.

However, their expressions of humility, regret and transformation often are not backed up, he said.

Christopher B. Cordero was able to back it up, Yeatts said

“You are a very unique case,” the judge said Tuesday.

Everything he has heard about Cordero is “extremely positive,” Yeatts said, and corroborates what Cordero told him in court.

To reward Cordero, Yeatts sentenced him to 1 year less 1 day to 2 years less 1 day in jail with 80 days’ credit on a charge of prohibited possession of a firearm, a count that resolved two cases: the Dec. 21, 2010, shooting of Deandre Chambers in Triple D’s Diner, 605 Roemer Blvd., Farrell; and the assault of a woman Jan. 13, 2013, in an apartment in the 800 block of Market Avenue, Farrell.

Yeatts noted he went below the guidelines – he did not say what they were – but could have sentenced Cordero to a maximum of 5 to 10 years in prison.

Assistant District Attorney Brian Farrone said he had no objections to departure from the guidelines.

Cordero, 26, of 218 Fruit Ave., Farrell, is not allowed to possess a gun because of a 2006 conviction on a charge of possession of cocaine with intent to deliver.

Since posting bond, Cordero has started attending church, got a part-time job as a carpenter, started a side business as a party promoter, and become much more attentive to the 4-year-old son he lives with.

He noted his girlfriend, Charisse Kennedy, is expecting a child, which will be his fifth.

“I’ve never been so positive in my life,” Cordero said. “I’ve been going through some good things.”

“He’s definitely changed,” Kennedy said.

Prior to his last jail stint, Kennedy could not rely on Cordero to look after their son. Now, he’s interacting with the boy every day, an experience Cordero has found to be uplifting.

“Before, he would never do that,” Kennedy said. “He did a complete turnaround.”

Cordero’s attorney, Melissa M. Merchant-Calvert, said Cordero had a rough upbringing, noting his mother and stepfather both are incarcerated.

Cordero said his stepfather is serving a federal sentence for drugs, and his mother is in an Ohio institution for a drug offense.

“I need to break that cycle,” Cordero said.

“In the last year I’ve been with Mr. Cordero, he has made steps in the right direction,” Merchant-Calvert said.

Text Only
Local News
  • Police: Kids in car were OK

    The mother of two young children was drunk and passed out when police found them all in a car parked along a city street, Sharon police said.

    July 29, 2014

  • To talk – or not – about police

    The mysterious agenda item, “No. 10,” at Farrell’s council meeting Monday became the center of a heated workshop and business session.

    July 29, 2014

  • Community thanks its first-responders

    Sharpsville honored its emergency responders Sunday at an event that included Mertz Towers residents as special guests.

    July 28, 2014

  • Drilling boom challenges state inspectors

    The state’s 83 well inspectors face a daunting enough challenge keeping tabs on 120,000 active oil and gas wells that have been drilled over the last century.

    July 28, 2014

  • Kidds Mill Covered Bridge A span of time

    Four generations of the Cadman family have enjoyed the Kidds Mill Covered Bridge, which is in Pymatuning Township near where the family’s ancestral farm is located.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • Intruder hurts woman, takes $5

    A home invasion in Hermitage Friday night sent an elderly woman to the hospital and netted the robber $5.

    July 27, 2014

  • national night out March against crime set for Aug. 5

    At the last Southwest Mercer County Regional Police Commission meeting, Chief Riley Smoot Jr. presented the number of incidents for each of the four communities in May.

    Farrell topped out at 819.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • high street trail Peaceful pathways

    History buffs and picnickers in the Shenango Valley won’t have to drive to Sharpsville to hang out at the old Erie Canal extension lock. They’ll soon have the option to walk or roll in on bicycles and even powered chairs to visit Canal Park near the outflow of Shenango Dam.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • balloonquest1 Balloon Quest celebrates 25 years

    Today is the final day of the 25th annual Western Pennsylvania Balloon Quest at Scotland Meadows Park.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • News briefs from July 26, 2014

    Man faces bomb threat charges

    June building tops $4 million in Hermitage

    July 26, 2014

  • Elderly man survives plane crash

    An elderly man survived wrecking his plane into a bank, then landing into a wetland, about 200 feet south of Runway 28 at Grove City Regional Airport in Springfield Township on Friday.

    July 26, 2014

  • Dontae Rashad Pinkins Man arrested for April gunfight

    Federal marshals and local police arrested Dontae Rashad Pinkins Thursday on a warrant accusing him of involvement in an April gunfight with another man in a Sharon alley.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hearing changed in starving case

    The time and place for the preliminary hearing of a Greenville mom accused of starving and beating her 7-year-old young son has been changed.

    July 26, 2014

  • Schell working on mural Drawn to Mexico

    Jason Schell probably is not exaggerating when he says that millions of people have seen his art.

    July 26, 2014 4 Photos

  • Farrell man, 24, arrested on warrant in connection with April shooting

    Federal marshals and local police arrested Dontae Rashad Pinkins Thursday on a warrant accusing him of involvement in an April shootout in Sharon.

    Pinkins, 24, of Farrell, is in Mercer County Jail after failing to post bond on gun charges.

    Additional details to follow.

    July 25, 2014