Theft Charges Dismissed

BEAVER — Criminal charges filed against the owner of a defunct personal-care home were dismissed prior to a preliminary hearing.

Lynn M. Katekovich, 58, was accused by state police of withholding pay from employees at her Big Beaver-based facility, Katera’s Kove.

The 78-bed facility on Norwood Drive was closed in October after an employee reported not having been paid by Katekovich for two months of work. In all, three employees were named in a criminal complaint filed against her.

One former employee reported she was not paid $560 by Katekovich for hours she worked between Sept. 24 and Oct. 14, police said. Another told police she had not been paid for two months of work, though the report did not specify the amount she was owed.

Police said a third employee reported her insurance through the company Aflac was canceled in March when Katekovich stopped paying into the account, even though the employee said she had money taken out of her pay to cover the insurance, police said.

Katekovich’s defense attorney, Steven Townsend, said all three cases were dismissed. Only one of the cases, he said, was “valid.” Katekovich resolved that case by paying the employee the $560 she was owed.

In the case of the Aflac account, Townsend said documents showed that the employee was actually covered by the company and that the money had not been taken out.

The third employee did not cooperate with the investigation and failed to appear in court, Townsend said.

Three charges of theft were dismissed against Katekovich. Townsend said Katera’s Kove remains closed.

At the time she was charged, 19 residents were relocated from the home, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services.

NOT GUILTY – Sex Assault

BEAVER — It took a Beaver County jury less than two hours Friday to find a man not guilty on charges he sexually assaulted a 3-year-old New Brighton girl six years ago.

Thomas H. Javens II, 33, whose last known address was 1621 Sampson St., Conway, was accused of inappropriately touching the girl, now 9, in her home. He was charged with aggravated indecent assault and indecent assault by New Brighton Area police in May 2012 after a forensic interviewer concluded the girl was making what they call a “positive disclosure” of sexual abuse, according to the police report.

After the interviewer’s ruling, police set up a telephone call using the mother to obtain a confession from Javens. His defense attorney, Steven Townshend, however, argued during this week’s trial that the apology Javens gave on the recording was for a recent argument involving the child, not past sexual contact.

Townshend argued it was an older child in the home who touched the girl, not Javens, and her mother was taking advantage of the situation to harm Javens, who she was fighting with over a custody issue involving another child.

Assistant District Attorney Frank Martocci argued the girl has always been consistent in her story about what happened and that Javens inappropriately touched her.

He also argued that the apology telephone call clearly was about the 2007 incident, not the more recent argument.

After the verdict was read, though, Martocci said, “I respect the jury’s decision.”