Archive for December, 2011

Pennsylvania’s Rabies Problem

Posted on: December 29th, 2011       Attorney Thomas Newell

A December 20, 2011 article on highlighted the continued problem we face with rabies here in Pennsylvania. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, PA ranked first in the United States for domestic animal rabies cases in 2010, 2009 and 2008. In 2010, Pennsylvania was ranked 5th for the total number of confined rabies cases in all animals.

The PA Department of Agriculture (PDA) identified 3 ways that rabies can be transmitted:

– a direct bite
– a scratch
– exposure to an open wound

In the year 2010, the PDA reported 410 rabid animals in Pennsylvania with 56 cats and 4 dogs among those identified.

Attorney Newell recommends that all dog/cat bite victims obtain a rabies vaccine injection unless they are able to verify that the attacking dog/cat was up to date with its rabies shots. If you would like a free home consultation with Attorney Thomas J. Newell after a dog attack, call 800-980-4842. His website – has additional information regarding medical issues common in dog bite attacks.

Should PA Follow New Jersey’s Lead re: Dangerous Dog Attacks?

Posted on: December 22nd, 2011       Attorney Thomas Newell

A December 15, 2011 article on highlighted the new “get tough” laws being proposed in New Jersey to place more accountability on dangerous dog owners. The New Jersey Sentencing Counsel is considering new laws which would:

1. Ensure that irresponsible dog owners who put the public at risk are banned from owning/harboring dogs
2. Euthanize dogs adjudicated to be dangerous dogs
3. Require compensation be paid to victims

Owners of dangerous, non-confined dogs that injure people in a public place could face up to 2 years in jail under new guidelines for judges. In 2010, almost 1,200 dangerous dog owners were sentenced for offenses which would be covered under the proposed new laws. Anyone using an animal as a weapon to attack someone can be cited for criminal assault.

If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in a dog bite attack, please contact Thomas J. Newell at 800-980-4842 to set up a free home consult. Attorney Newell has been representing PA personal injury victims since 1981. Please visit his website of for more info on the PA Dog Law.

Fatal PA Turnpike NE Extension Car Accident

Posted on: December 19th, 2011       Attorney Thomas Newell

On Dec. 13, 2011, a multi-vehicle crash on I-476 took the life of a driver in a Montgomery County accident. As described in The Morning Call, a tractor-trailer was being driven southbound on the Northeast Extension when rush hour traffic ahead of it slowed down. The truck driver could not stop in time and slammed into the rear of a car.

The Montco motor vehicle accident resulted in a fireball which engulfed a portion of the car and the tractor-trailer. The driver of the car was pronounced dead at the scene of the fatal PA car wreck. The passenger car was pushed into another vehicle which resulted in a chain reaction causing damage to 5 vehicles in total.

All southbound traffic was rerouted from Interstate 476 at the Lansdale exit as that portion of the NE Extension was shut down for hours. If you or a family member have been involved in a serious car accident, you deserve to have an experienced PA car crash lawyer fighting on your behalf. Attorney Thomas J. Newell has been representing PA auto accident victims since 1981. Call 800-980-4842 for a free home consultation or see his website of

Fayette County Pit Bull Attack Precedes Fatal Stabbing

Posted on: December 15th, 2011       Attorney Thomas Newell

On Dec. 10, 2011, a Fayette County woman claimed she was bitten by a pit bull after her boyfriend ordered it to attack her. According to The Herald Standard, the pit bull became aggressive with her, ripped her shirt and bit her arm. The woman then grabbed a kitchen knife and began to stab at the pit bull to defend herself.

The Fayette County pit bull attack victim claimed that her boyfriend attempted to protect the dog when she stabbed him in the ensuing melee. Pennsylvania State Police were called to the scene of the attack. The pit bull owner was medevaced to Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh where he died a short time later.

Pennsylvania State Police from the Uniontown Barracks investigated the incident. The PA dog bite victim was treated at Uniontown Hospital for her dog bite wounds. She was then arrested and charged with a single count of criminal homicide. She remains incarcerated in Fayette County prison.

If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in a dog bite attack, please call 800-980-4842 to set up a free home consultation. Attorney Newell has been representing personal injury victims in Pennsylvania for over 30 years. Information regarding the PA Dog Law can be found at

Investigation Into Westmoreland Co. Pit Bull Attack Continues

Posted on: December 12th, 2011       Attorney Thomas Newell

On Dec. 12, 2011, Attorney Newell spoke with several potential witnesses who may have information regarding the owner of the pit bull that savagely attacked Hayden Stoll on 11/18/11 in Herminie PA. A resident of nearby Arona PA owned multiple pit bulls over the last few years.

It is alleged that one of his pit bulls bit a young boy in the face on 12/19/10. Medical care was provided at Westmoreland Hospital with stitches needed to close the facial wounds. Local dog catcher, Fred Moran, informed Attorney Newell that the pit bull owner in question was cited 3 or 4 times in the past for various PA Dog Law violations, including failure to confine.

While it is unclear as to the connection between the most recent pit bull attack and the resident of Arona, the investigation regarding the identity of the negligent dog owner continues. To arrange for a free home consultation with Attorney Newell concerning your dog bite case, call 800-980-4842. You may also reach him thru his website of

5 Teens Killed in Adams County Car Accident

Posted on: December 7th, 2011       Attorney Thomas Newell

On Dec. 5, 2011, a fatal PA car crash on Route 94 in Hamilton Township took the lives of 5 teenagers. As described on, the 5 teens were all students of New Oxford High School and had just left school for the day. The 17 year-old driver had 4 passengers in his Saturn when he crossed the center line on Rt. 94.

The teenage driver tried to swerve back into his lane. Unfortunately, he could not avoid a collision with a Chevy Silverado in its proper lane. The pick-up crushed the smaller vehicle and forced it backwards nearly 200 feet. All 5 Adams County car accident victims apparently died instantly.

The grim irony is that “Lacy’s Law” is due to go into effect on December 24, 2011. That law limits a driver under the age of 18 to one passenger under 18 for the first 6 months after receiving a junior license. After 6 months, the passenger limit increases from 1 to 3 so long as the driver is not cited for any motor vehicle violations or has any culpability for an automobile accident.

Attorney Thomas Newell has represented PA car crash victims throughout Pennsylvania since 1981. If you or a family member have been seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident, please call Attorney Newell at 800-980-4842. He provides a free home consultation for all of his clients. Put his 30 years of experience to work for you. For more information, please visit his website of

Attorney Newell Hired to Represent Westmoreland County Pit Bull Attack Victim

Posted on: December 5th, 2011       Attorney Thomas Newell

On Dec. 2, 2011, Attorney Thomas J. Newell was hired by a Westmoreland County family to represent their son who was viciously attacked by a pit bull on Nov. 18, 2011. The 5 year-old boy was admitted to the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC. Multiple surgeries were required to treat his extensive injuries.

The Herminie PA dog bite victim had surgery performed to repair a damaged right-sided facial nerve. Another surgery was needed to repair an external auditory canal avulsion. There were 2 large facial lacerations which were sutured closed. Lastly, he had 3 fractures to the jaw which were treated with wires and the installation of a plate.

The dog bite victim was hospitalized for 6 days and remains confined to his home due to his significant injuries. If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in a dog attack, please call 800-980-4842 to arrange for a free home consultation with Attorney Newell. Put his 30 years of experience to work for you. More information about his expertise can be found at