Olyphant volunteer firefighter reported fake gas leak, police say

Dec. 7—An Olyphant volunteer firefighter reported a fake gas leak in October, one of several false calls reported in the borough in recent weeks, borough police say.

Joseph Ogozaly, 23, 316 Jackson St., is charged with one count of false alarms to an agency of public safety, a misdemeanor. Police say he reported a phony gas leak Oct. 30 at 504 Susquehanna Ave. to UGI Utilities, which resulted in the Fire Department responding to check it out.

According to a criminal complaint filed by Sgt. Lewis Kline and Patrolman Daniel Volpi, borough Fire Chief Bob Powell and Tyler Tratthen, chief of Excelsior Hose Company 1, quickly identified Ogozaly by his voice as they listened to a recording of the report police obtained from the utility company. Ogozaly is a member of the hose company, according to the police report.

Ogozaly denied he made the call when asked by Kline. Ogozaly changed his story several times once Kline told him he was identified from the recording without hesitation.

The Oct. 30 call was one of several false reports made between Oct. 27 and Nov. 25, police said. Kline said the case remains under investigation.

Anyone who has information should contact police at 570-383-1820.

Ogozaly was released on $8,500 unsecured bail. A preliminary hearing is scheduled Dec. 19.

Contact the writer: jkohut@timesshamrock.com, 570-348-9100, x5187; @jkohutTT on Twitter.