Magisterial District Court Reports
DUI

Maureen Marie Ryneski, 52, 1156 Foster Ave., White Haven, has been charged with DUI and careless driving stemming from an incident that took place on June 16, 2017. Charges were filed on July 11, 2017 by Sgt. Harry Ehret, Rice Township Police Department.

According to the Affidavit of Probable Cause, on June 16, 2017, Sgt. Ehret was working a DUI checkpoint on Route 309 in the area of Weis Plaza. While parked in the center lane facing north, he observed an oncoming vehicle traveling south in the area of the DUI check point ahead sign, turn and cross over the center turning lane into the path of oncoming traffic and proceed to go north.

Sgt. Ehret pulled out and stopped the vehicle, a silver Honda Civic, at the corner of Route 309 and Birch Street. The officer approached the vehicle and spoke to two persons in the vehicle, and asked why they turned around to avoid the DUI checkpoint.

The driver, who was identified as Maureen M. Ryneski, stated that they did not want to get tied up in the checkpoint, and that they were just heading home from King’s restaurant.

While speaking with Ryneski, Sgt.

Ehret noticed the odor of alcohol on her breath, that her speech was slurred, and her eyes were bloodshot and glossy. Sgt. Ehret asked if she had been drinking and she stated yes, that they had a few glasses of wine with dinner but that they were fine to drive. Sgt. Ehret requested that Ryneski make sure the car was in park and exit the vehicle the vehicle and perform field sobriety tests, and a breath test. She was informed that as long as she was able to do the tests and that her breath test for alcohol was under the legal limit, she was free to go.

Ryneski exited the vehicle and was asked to walk to the rear of the vehicle. Sgt. Ehret noticed she was having trouble walking and standing in place so she was assisted to lean up against the vehicle. The breath test was administered to Ryneski and it took three attempts to obtain a satisfactory amount of breath to register a blood alcohol result. The result did register over the legal limit allowed by state law.

Due to her condition of not being able to follow simple commands and also the fact that she was so unstable on her feet, no other field sobriety tests were given to her. She was placed under arrest for suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and was advised of her Miranda Rights and O’Connell Warnings.

When the front seat passenger, Tara Bending, heard Ryneski was being arrested for suspicion of DUI, she became very abusive and argumentative with the officer and stated she was calling her lawyer and that he would take care of this. She was also informed to call a family member to pick her up because she had been drinking and that the vehicle was parked on the roadway.

Ryneski was transported to the DUI Processing Center at the Wilkes-Barre Police Headquarters. Ryneski’s legal blood alcohol was 0.168%. She was released to her family and informed she would be receiving paperwork in the mail in regards to a DUI charge.

A preliminary hearing has been scheduled August 23, 2017 at 10 a. m. before Magisterial District Judge Martin Kane.

Simple Assault, Harassment

Kenneth D. Kleppinger, 30, 136 Valley Stream Park, Mountain Top, has been charged with simple assault and harassment stemming from an incident that took place on July 2, 2017. Charges were filed on July 5, 2017 by Ptlm. Andrew Hashagen of the Rice Township Police Department.

According to the Affidavit of Probable Cause, on July 2, 2017, Officer Hashagen was dispatched to 136 Valley Stream Park for a report of a male, later identified as Kenneth Kleppinger, packing up a female’s, later identified as Jessica Roman, belongings and attempting to move her out. Jessica stated to 911 dispatchers that she had lived at the residence for two years.

Upon the officer’s arrival, Roman stated Kelppinger had fled the scene. Inside the residence, Officer Hashagen saw items thrown around the house. There was also a silver gun safe that the officer opened and saw all guns removed. Roman said Kleppinger took them all with him. She continued to state that she had been fighting with him for the past few days because she had gone to see the “Chippendale dancers” for her birthday. Roman stated that Kleppinger came home and told her she was not allowed to stay there and began to grab dresser drawers from the bedroom and put them in a back bedroom and in her vehicle which was parked outside. She then stated her two children were present in the home at the time of this and told them to go next door.

Roman then attempted to call 911 and when she did, Kleppinger “became violent” and attempted to grab her phone. She said he pushed her up against a door, grabbed her by the arms and kept trying to grab her phone. Officer Hashagen noticed signs of recent injuries such as a bruised lip and marks on her upper arms and neck area.

Officer Hashagen and Fairview Officer DeLuca learned that Kleppinger could be heading to Act Towing on South Main Road and went to look for him there.

When the officers arrived there, they spoke with Jennifer Pearson who stated Kleppinger had come to the shop with several firearms in his pickup truck. She said he parked his truck, took a silver handgun behind the building, shot two rounds, then put the handgun in the saddle bag ofhis Harley-Davidson motorcycle and“ sped off” without saying anything. Officers were told Kleppinger maybe at the Crossroads or Wheels butwere unable to locate him there.

At 10:36 p. m., Kleppinger cameto the Rice Twp. Police Dept. tobe interviewed. He was read hisMiranda Warnings, and was advisedthe interview would be audio andvideo recorded. Kleppinger signedthe waiver of his rights and agreed tobe recorded.

Kleppinger stated that he arrivedat the home and told Roman to moveher stuff to the other side of thehouse, and that Jessica stated shehad 30 days to leave. He then saidJessica “started pushing buttons” and was telling him to hit her. At thistime the children left the house andKleppinger said Roman pulled himdown by the neck, telling him to hither. Kleppinger stated he did not wanther in the house and was advised thatshe was a resident of the house andshe would have to be evicted. Whenasked by Officer Hashagen if hesmashed Jessica’s phone, he stated hedid not but that he had her phone withhim and turned it over to the officer. Kenneth stated he took the phonebecause she threw it at him.

Kleppinger was notified that hewould be receiving charges in themail about the incident. He stated hewanted to file charges against Jessicafor grabbing him.

A preliminary hearing has beenscheduled August 16, 2017 at 10 a. m. before Magisterial District JudgeRonald Swank.