Northwestern Press

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Bethlehem man charged after vehicle found in pond

Wednesday, July 18, 2018 by SUSAN BRYANT in Police Log

A 23-year-old Bethlehem man was charged with false reporting of a theft or conversion of a vehicle after reporting to police at 12:54 a.m. June 30 his vehicle was stolen on June 29 from Hometown Diner, 8732 Hamilton Blvd, Upper Macungie Township.

Upper Macungie police say an investigation revealed Michael P. Connelly was never at the diner.

Police allege Connelly told them he concocted the story of the stolen vehicle so his parents would not know he damaged the vehicle.

State Police Troop M, Fogelsville, located the vehicle, a 2005 Chevrolet Trailblazer, partially submerged in a pond at 9299 Valley Road, Weisenberg Township, after the property owner reported finding it at 7:15 a.m. June 30.

Police determined by evidence at the scene, Connelly was traveling north on Valley Road when the Trailblazer left its lane of travel after Connelly attempted a U-turn.

The Trailblazer crashed into the pond on its driver’s side and came to a final rest facing south with the entire driver’s side submerged in water, state police say.

Police interviewed Connelly July 1, via phone.

Connelly allegedly told police he drove the SUV into the pond while attempting to make a U-turn, before fleeing the scene on foot.

State police say Connelly, who reportedly was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash, was not injured.

Connelly was charged before District Judge Michael Faulkner, Upper Macungie Township, with filing the false report.

He was also charged with a traffic violation by state police.