The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Breaking News

Local News

October 11, 2013

Toth adds township to free-speech civil suit

SOUTH PYMATUNING TOWNSHIP — Fresh from his victory in criminal court fighting charges that he disrupted a South Pymatuning Township supervisors’ meeting, Kurt D. Toth has filed new charges in an amended civil suit related to the same incident.

Toth has added South Pymatuning Township as a defendant – he initially sued only patrolman Andreu Foriska – and levied charges that the township violated his free-speech rights, and that Foriska maliciously prosecuted him, abused the criminal process and committed battery against him.

His previous complaint included charges that Foriska violated his free-speech rights, retaliated against him for exercising those rights and assaulted him.

The events arose from a June 12, 2012, supervisors’ meeting when Foriska removed Toth from the meeting at Taserpoint as Toth was questioning the supervisors.

Foriska charged Toth in criminal court and Toth went to trial Aug. 13. Mercer County Common Pleas Court Judge Thomas R. Dobson dismissed charges of disorderly conduct and failing to disperse after the prosecution rested its case, and found Toth not guilty of disrupting a lawful meeting.

Dobson said Toth, Foriska and then-Supervisor Michael Nashtock shared blame for the unpleasantness at the meeting: Toth for not showing respect or restraint; Nashtock, who was chairman, for not controlling the meeting or Foriska; and Foriska for usurping Nashtock’s role and stepping in when he was not needed.

While Dobson’s comments were made at a criminal trial in a state court, and Toth’s civil suit is before a federal judge, the amended complaint incorporates the supervisors’ alleged lack of strict control of meetings into the allegations of the suit.

The suit also alleges the township did not properly train Foriska as to his role when he is assigned to attend a supervisors’ meeting, and failed to “control” him when he stepped in and removed Toth.

The complaint also alleges Foriska filed the criminal case “to create leverage against (Toth) to withdraw his federal complaint in exchange for the reduction of charges as part of a plea bargain.”

Foriska filed the criminal charges June 25, 2012, three days after Toth initiated his civil suit.

The township and Foriska will have an opportunity to respond to the amended complaint, which was filed Oct. 1.

Text Only
Local News
  • Couple, another man charged in thefts

    Pennsylvania State Police have filed charges of burglary, theft, receiving stolen property and criminal mischief against an East Palestine, Ohio, couple and another man in connection with two robberies in rural Mercer County.

    July 22, 2014

  • Taking stock Where’s the beef? Bull’s still missing

    Is it possible that an alien abduction took place in the Mercer area last week? A solid red, 2-year-old Watusi bull with 3-foot-long horns has been missing since July 14 with no trace of its existence left on earth.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Buhl Day honorees

    The Buhl Day committee has chosen for this year’s celebration five honored guests whose volunteer work they feel best showcases the legacy of philanthropic work left behind by Frank and Julia Buhl a century ago.

    July 22, 2014

  • GC pair not hurt in accident injuring 2

    Two drivers were taken to a hospital after an accident at the intersection of state routes 965 and 173 in Worth Township, police said.

    July 21, 2014

  • WaterFire crowds WaterFire doused

    Sharon’s WaterFire wasn’t lacking either of its elements on Saturday. There was steady, day-long rain but the day concluded with the Shenango River ablaze.

    July 21, 2014 2 Photos

  • ‘Starved’ boy released from hospital

    A 7-year-old boy allegedly starved and beaten by his mother is out of the hospital and ordered out of his Greenville home by Mercer County Common Pleas President Judge Thomas R. Dobson.

    July 20, 2014

  • WaterFire walking tour Time traveling

    A group of more 50 people walked between the raindrops Saturday during an historical tour of downtown Sharon during the city’s WaterFire celebration.

    July 20, 2014 6 Photos 1 Story

  • News briefs from July 19, 2014

    Michigan man charged with assaulting girl here

    Sharon man charged with raping woman

    July 19, 2014

  • For sale Realty transfer tax hike headed for ballot

    Sharon voters will be deciding through a referendum whether city council can raise the realty transfer tax. Council gave first reading Thursday to an ordinance that phrases the question that will be printed on the November ballot.

    July 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bella recovering Vet: Dog lucky to be alive, should survive

    Although a veterinarian said an underweight dog found Thursday with a gruesome neck wound was lucky to be alive, her prognosis for recovery is good.

    July 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • Alleged hit-run driver arrested

    Sharon police said Friday afternoon they had arrested a man believed to have driven a vehicle that struck an 11-year-old boy Thursday and left the scene.

    July 19, 2014

  • Boy ‘was being starved’

    A 7-year-old Greenville boy described as looking like a human skeleton had been starved and beaten by his mother for a year, authorities are saying.

    July 19, 2014

  • Corruption case puts ex-youth leader in rehab program

    The former commander of the local Civil Air Patrol squadron has been admitted into a diversionary program to resolve a criminal case, but the conditions of the program all but forbid his involvement with CAP, his attorney said.

    July 18, 2014

  • GACT’s ‘Steel Magnolias’ opens tonight at Thiel

    Beauty parlor gossip, southern drawls and big hair may sound out of place for Mercer County, but it’s very much a real scene in Thiel College’s William Robinson Theater.

    July 18, 2014

  • Police seek hit-and-run driver who struck boy

    A boy riding a Mongoose bike on Second Avenue in Sharon Thursday evening was struck straight on by a truck whose driver never hit the brakes or looked back, witnesses said.

    July 18, 2014