Judge fines those who skipped jury duty in Lightcap trial

A Cambria County Judge has fined eighteen people who were called for jury duty but didn’t show up on jury selection day in the trial of George Lightcap.
Lightcap, 30, of Nanty Glo, was on trial for the beating death of 43-year-old Tyrone Fire Chief Ray Stringer.
“Our Constitution says a person is entitled to a jury of his or her peers, to a full cross-section of our citizens, and not (only) to those out of a job at the time or those retired,” Krumenacker told The Associated Press on Tuesday.
AP said Krumenacker fined 17 of the jury skippers $25 each; while a physician who skipped got a $100 fine. The judge issued a warrant for a 19th person who skipped jury duty on the trial and missed Monday’s court date when the fines were handed out.
AP said among the 126 people who did report to the jury pool that day were a mother who couldn’t find a sitter and showed up cradling her baby, and a woman still on crutches from hip replacement surgery.
The jury was selected on March 1 and the trial began the next day. Lightcap was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter and aggravated assault when a verdict was handed down on March 6.
Lightcap was accused of hitting Stringer in a bar fight at the Nanty Glo VFW in the early morning hours of Aug. 19. Stringer died about an hour after the incident at a Johnstown hospital. Lightcap was arrested within hours of the incident and charged with homicide. Prosecutors decided not to seek the death penalty. Defense attorneys argued for self-defense. The jury could have found Lightcap guilty of first, third or voluntary manslaughter charges but decided on involuntary manslaughter and aggravated assault.
Stringer was in Nanty Glo for a firefighters convention and went to the VFW on the night of Aug. 18. Convention activities were held elsewhere in Nanty Glo and the VFW was not the scene of official convention activities.
After his conviction, Lightcap was returned to Cambria County Prison where he has been lodged since his arrest in August. He is due to be sentenced on May 16.
In a previous article, the Associated Press reported Cambria County District Attorney Patrick Kiniry said Lightcap probably faces several years in prison, plus a lengthy probation. Aggravated assault is a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison; involuntary manslaughter — a killing that results from reckless or grossly negligent behavior — is a misdemeanor punishable by up to five years in prison.
(Editor’s note: The Associated Press contributed to this article.)