Kevin Petrochko, WTAJ News

Kevin Petrochko


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Past articles by Kevin:

Gun sales skyrocket amid crisis

(CNN) — Gun sellers across the U.S. are reporting major spikes in firearm and ammunition sales In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. Images of long lines outside gun stores in California, Oklahoma, and elsewhere have gone viral across social media. The ammunition website said it saw a 222-percent increase in transactions over a three-week period. → Read More

Local first responders receive protective wear

ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — In Blair County, a shipment of personal protectant equipment arrived at the 911 center in Altoona this afternoon. Multiple boxes of gloves, head covers, and masks were dropped off. This gear will be worn by first responders who will be testing for the coronavirus. Director of EMA of Blair County Mark […] → Read More

Plant a tree for Flight 93 pushed back to next year

SHANKSVILLE, SOMERSET COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — In a response to the coronavirus, “plant a tree for flight 93” has been moved to next year. The event pays tribute to those who lost their lives in the Shanksville plane crash on September 11, 2001, by planting trees across the crash site. The reforestation effort was rescheduled […] → Read More

Olympic torch begins travel

(CNN) — Greece has officially handed over the Olympic flame to Tokyo ahead of the 2020 Summer Olympic Games. But, due to coronavirus fears, there’s still uncertainty if the games will actually take place. As of right now, the games are still on, but that could change. A board member of the Japan Olympic Committee […] → Read More

Local fire company offering delivery

OSCEOLA MILLS, CENTRE COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — The Columbia Fire Company is receiving $2,000 to prepare for the spread of Covid-19. Funds will be used to buy medical supplies to combat coronavirus. Firefighters will also be delivering groceries and prescriptions to senior citizens and anyone who is choosing to self-quarantine. Volunteers are just happy to […] → Read More

Local restaurant hands out food

TYRONE, BLAIR COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — Our community continues to provide. Lunches are still being handed out for those who may need them throughout the week. The bullpen is one place that is joining that cause. Volunteers met in the parking lot to hand out food provided by the bullpen and other surrounding businesses. One […] → Read More

Pa Supreme Court closes courts to public statewide

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WTAJ) — The Pennsylvania Supreme Court announced today that all Pennsylvania courts are closed to the public for non-essential functions through at least April 3, 2020. This is in an effort to restrict potential COVID-19 exposure within the courts further. This statewide closure also includes magisterial district courts, intermediate appellate courts, Philadelphia Municipal […] → Read More

Official at SFU vs Robert Morris game tests positive for coronavirus

(WTAJ) — An official who worked the NEC Men’s Basketball Championship game between Robert Morris University and St. Francis University on March 10 has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. The NEC has notified both universities as per their announcement earlier this evening via Twitter. → Read More

Four in custody for drug charges

JACKSON TOWNSHIP, CAMBRIA COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — Four people were taken into custody in Cambria County on various drug-related charges. A search warrant executed at a home on Trout Street in Jackson Township uncovered a stash of drugs hidden in the residence. One hundred forty-six grams of crystal methamphetamine were taken from the home, as […] → Read More

Dollar General announces first hour of operations dedicated to senior customers

(WHNT) – Dollar General announced Monday that the chain will dedicate the first hour of every business day to senior shoppers and will close an hour early for cleaning and restocking. Starting Tuesday, Dollar General is strongly encouraging that the first hour of operations each day be dedicated solely for the shopping needs of senior […] → Read More

Coronavirus shakes up stock market

(CBS) — Stocks tanked quickly after the opening bell, triggering another circuit breaker This is the third trading halt over the last six days. The sell-off came despite the federal reserve’s announcement Sunday it was slashing interest rates by a full percentage point to near zero. One of the hardest-hit sectors is travel though the […] → Read More

Local students perform in a rooftop musical

ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — Those traveling down Logan Boulevard got a musical surprise today when they came across two boys playing guitar on a roof. They were supposed to play in a band concert this Thursday, which was postponed due to the school closures. That didn’t stop them from enjoying the extra time they have. […] → Read More

Road closures expected on I-80 and I-99

(WTAJ) — Construction of replacement guard rails along Interstate 80 and Interstate 99 expected to cause closures. Work is expected to begin next Monday, March 23rd. Crews will be located in Clinton County and will extend to Centre and Clearfield counties. Construction is expected to take place between the 96 and 194-mile markers. There will […] → Read More

Man allegedly points gun at mother

ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — Police in Blair County arrested a man after he allegedly pointed a gun at his mother and fiance. WTAJ has learned Tyler Knepp Junior, 29, had an argument with his mother and fiance about where his brothers’ gun was. Knepp found the weapon in his brothers’ bedroom ejected the magazine and […] → Read More

Las Vegas student delivers groceries to elderly

(KVVU) — The Coronavirus has left many older people without any way to get groceries as health officials urge people over the age of 60 to stay at home. But one student in Las Vegas has taken it upon herself to make sure those affected are not left without the essentials. Tiana Bohner says the […] → Read More

$120 Million in grants to help the homeless

WASHINGTON D.C. (NEXSTAR) — More help is on the way for community organizations that serve homeless families and individuals. Jessi Turnure says the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development is offering nearly $120 million in grants to support programs across the nation. “It’s become a crisis in our country,” said Dr. Ben Carson: HUD […] → Read More

Amy Bracken investigation continues

(WTAJ) — New details on a search for a woman that went missing back in January. WTAJ has been told that the investigation of Amy Bracken, 39, has been transferred to the Allegheny Police Department in Pittsburgh. Amy was reported missing on February 10 by her family. She was last seen on January 17. Since […] → Read More

Multiple Fire Companies fighting brush fire

LOGAN TOWNSHIP, Pa. (WTAJ) — More than a dozen area fire companies have been battling brush fires today in the area of the Horseshoe Curve. Dispatch says there are multiple fires burning in that part of Logan Township. The area is extensive stretching from Coburn Crossing outside of Altoona, to above the second reservoir on […] → Read More

ATV crash sends two to the hospital

FERGUSON TOWNSHIP, CENTRE COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — An ATV crash sends two people to the hospital in Ferguson Township. The rider crashed into a telephone pole and rolled over at the corner of Marengo and West Gateburg roads around 11 p.m. last night. The 34-year-old driver was taken by medical helicopter to UPMC Altoona, and […] → Read More

Happy Valley’s Got Talent canceled

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (WTAJ) — Happy Valley’s Got Talent announced today that the upcoming show scheduled for April 25, 2020, at The State Theatre, has been canceled. They made the announcement earlier today on their Facebook Page. → Read More