Police Drop Fleeing, Eluding Charges Against Sugar Notch Councilman

October 4, 2018

WILKES-BARRE — Police on Wednesday dropped fleeing and eluding charges against a Sugar Notch councilman accused of failing to yield during a traffic stop.

Mario J. Fiorucci Jr., 61, of 893 Main St., Sugar Notch, had been facing a felony count of fleeing police, a misdemeanor count of escape and a summary offense of following too closely.

Court records show that police dropped the charges against Fiorucci at a preliminary hearing at central court Wednesday morning.

Sugar Notch police Chief Jeremy Talanca did not immediately return a message seeking comment about the withdrawal. Fiorucci also did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

According to the complaint, Talanca was patrolling Main Street near the Major League Sports Bar & Restaurant the night of July 6 when he observed a gold Toyota sedan closely following a truck.

The officer pulled behind the car and activated the lights on his patrol car, and the driver stopped in front of Fiorucci’s house, the complaint says. The vehicle then began reversing toward the police car, prompting Talanca to activate an air horn to alert the driver of his presence, according to the complaint.

The driver quickly exited the vehicle, and Talanca recognized him as Fiorucci, who had previously fled the police, the complaint alleges.

Talanca ordered Fiorucci to return to his vehicle, but Fiorucci refused and continued walking quickly toward his home, police said. Despite getting numerous additional orders to return to his vehicle, Fiorucci unlocked his front door and entered before Talanca could stop him, according to the complaint.

Talanca called for backup, and the Luzerne County 911 call center then informed him that Fiorucci had called seeking state police assistance, the complaint says. Fiorucci explained that he needed to use the rest room because he suffers from irritable bowel syndrome, according to the complaint.

Through the call center, Talanca advised Fiorucci to exit his home after relieving himself, the complaint says.

Instead, Fiorucci opened a window to explain he had to go to the bathroom, but refused to come out, the complaint says.

Fiorucci was charged by summons July 16 and had been out of custody pending his preliminary hearing.

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