Friday, August 24, 2007

Today's News-Friday, August 24th

Four people, including three children, were hurt in a crash in Schuylkill Township yesterday.
Police report that Megan Murray and her three young children were traveling east on Route 209 when a truck driven by James Davis of Tamaqua pulled into her path. According to the Republican and Herald, Murray's SUV was pushed off of the road and into a wooded area.
The Murray family was taken to Lehigh Valley Hospital for treatment. Two of the kids were released. Davis was not injured. The crash happened around 9:30 Thursday morning.

Arrests are pending for several people following a fight at a Mount Carbon establishment early this morning. Schuylkill Haven state police were called to Goodfella's Café around 2am after a large fight was reported. Several as yet unidentified individuals were involved in the fight, one was taken to the hospital for a severe cut on the ear, and one treated at a local hospital for facial injuries. Troopers report that there were approximately 30 people at the bar at the time of their arrival. Haven state police were assisted by troopers from Hamburg and Frackville, along with Pottsville city police, and officers from Schuylkill Haven and St. Clair. Assault and harassment charges will be filed against several individuals at the conclusion of the investigation.

A Shamokin man was arrested following an incident in Mahanoy Township earlier this week.
Frackville state police say that 34-year-old James Campbell and 37-year-old Guy Coxe got into an argument at the Schuylkill Energy Resources co-gen plant Monday afternoon. Reports indicate that the argument escalated, with Campbell pushing Coxe against the wall. Campbell was charged with harassment.

State police are investigating two incidents of people’s vehicles being damaged by BB pellets.
Troopers say that two vehicles, owned by Steve Motil of Nuremberg, and Joseph Kriesher of Brandonville, were traveling on Route 924 in Brandonville when they were struck by BB pellets from an unknown shooter. Both cars had minor damage. The investigation continues.

An East Union Township home was burglarized earlier this week. The home of Jennifer Hasker of Oneida was robbed between Monday and Tuesday. The thief got away with a diamond ring and cash from a safe in the bedroom. Troopers from the Frackville barracks are continuing their investigation.

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has announced another round of grants to ensure the safety of the state's drinking water supplies. In an announcement made yesterday, Governor Ed Rendell said that more than $2.6 million dollars in sewage facilities enforcement grants to help municipalities enforce on-lot sewage system requirements. The grants reimburse local governments for costs associated with permitting these systems. In Schuylkill County, 9 boroughs and townships will receive grants, in varying amounts, to help in permitting the sewer systems.

The County Commissioners honored Orwigsburg Troop 624 during their Wednesday meeting.
The troop was presented with a certificate of appreciation for their efforts for being a sponsor for a recycling site in Orwigsburg. The troop was also presented with a check for $1,378.
Dan Grow of the Solid Waste department said the Orwigsburg site has collected 245 tons of recyclable material during the year, among the highest tonnage in the county. In other business, the commissioners approved a request to extend the bid award date for 12 demolition projects from Wednesday to September 12th. The bids were opened during a work session on August 9th. The Commissioners also approved a grant-in-aid application from the juvenile court judges' commission for improving juvenile justice services in the county. The grant is for $272,304 for the period July 1, 2007 through June 30, 2008.

The Schuylkill County Commissioners Wednesday approved two change orders for work being done at the Tremont Senior Center. A blocked sewer line needs repair and an automatic door opener will be provided for the main entrance. The new contract cap for the project is $153,995. The former Tremont school building is being converted into a senior center by Bognet, Inc. of Hazleton. In other business, the ReDCo Group was given a contract for after hours crisis counseling and emergency services. The cost of the service was set at just under $218-thousand-dollars for the period July 1, 2007 through June 30, 2008. The County Economic Development office was granted approval to advertise for a public hearing on the Community Development Block Grant program and to hire a consultant for the program. Mullin and Lonergan Associates of Jamison will provide consulting services for a three year period beginning in 2008, at a cost of $21,700 per year.

UNDATED (AP) - More storms are possible today across parts of the Midwest that could use a break. Chicago storms dumped so much rain yesterday that officials were forced to open locks that release storm water and sewage into Lake Michigan. Parts of Ohio are cleaning up from the worst floods in almost a century.

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Twin tragedies involving hot cars and small children. A seven-month-old girl died after she was mistakenly left in a car in St. Louis, where it was in the upper 90s. Near
Cincinnati, a two-year-old girl died in a car in the parking lot at a school where her mother is assistant principal.

WASHINGTON (AP) - A key Republican says it's time to send Iraq's leaders a message that the U.S. won't keep its troops there forever. Senator John Warner of Virginia says President Bush should bring some troops home by Christmas. That as a new intelligence assessment says Iraqis have failed to govern effectively.

ATLANTA (AP) - A source tells ESPN that Michael Vick maintains he never killed dogs and never gambled on a dogfight. The source says the Atlanta Falcons quarterback will plead guilty Monday to a charge of interstate commerce for the purpose of dogfighting.

UNDATED (AP) - It's a big weekend for lottery players. Both of the nation's multi-state lotteries are sporting huge jackpots. The Mega Millions prize tonight is over 200 million dollars, while tomorrow's Powerball will be at least 300 million.

CHESTER, Pa. (AP) - Governor Ed Rendell is scheduled to visit a troubled Philadelphia area school district today. Rendell will discuss improvements that are being made in the
Chester Upland School District in preparation for the 2007-08 school year. The governor will hold a news conference at Chester High School. The Delaware County school district has struggled for years with low test scores and financial troubles. But the state declared in
March that the district was no longer financially distressed, and it appointed a special empowerment board to address the academic problems. The board is currently looking for a new top executive. Superintendent Gloria Grantham resigned in June, citing personal

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - Governor Ed Rendell says he's willing to consider alternatives to Labor Day weekend for upgrading Pennsylvania's computerized criminal background check system. That could be good news for hunters and sportsmen who otherwise will be unable to purchase guns for several days around the holiday weekend. Rendell acknowledged administration officials probably made a mistake by not touching base with sportsmen's groups before scheduling the work. Doing it September second through sixth would require halting gun sales during the first days of dove and Canada geese hunting seasons. The plan drew criticism from sportsmen's groups, gun dealers and some legislators. Rendell says he's naming an informal panel to decide whether the computer work can be done later in the fall.

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa. (AP) - The Montgomery County district attorney cautions that the arrest of the 22-year-old son of Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid shows only "the possibility of a crime." Plymouth Township police say Britt Reid was taken to a hospital
for a blood test after he failed a field sobriety test in a store parking lot yesterday. But DA Bruce Castor says he's waiting for the results of that test, which he says won't be available until Monday at the earliest. Britt Reid is already awaiting sentencing in a road-rage case,
in which police say he brandished a handgun at another driver. The prosecutor in that case says a drunken-driving charge would violate Reid's bail conditions.

MILLERSVILLE, Pa. (AP) - Millersville University officials say they're investigating photographs posted on the Web site of an anti-hazing group that appear to show members of the women's lacrosse team at a drinking party. The 16 photos show women wearing men's underwear on their heads, drinking from what appear to be beer cans duct-taped to their
hands, and wearing their hair rolled up in tampons. The Web site ( obscures the women's faces with black bars and circles, but says the names and faces match the
university's current team roster. Time stamps on the photos say they were taken in February 2006 and this year. Millersville athletic director Peg Kauffman says school officials are examining the photos to determine who participated. A spokesman for the Web site isn't saying how the photos were obtained.

CHICORA, Pa. (AP) - A Butler County man has been ordered to stand trial for allegedly killing his girlfriend's 14-month-old son after learning he wasn't the father . Police say 23-year-old Jarred Knight of Harrisville gave investigators at least three different accounts of how 14-month-old Tyler Davis suffered severe head injuries. An Allegheny County pathologist testified yesterday that none of Knight's accounts would have caused the two skull fractures, brain
swelling and retinal bleeding Tyler Davis suffered in June. Knight is charged with homicide, child endangerment and reckless endangerment. Knight's attorney says what happened to Tyler was an accident.

BLUE BELL, Pa. (AP) - A Montgomery County woman accused of killing her bigamist husband is headed to trial. Myra Morton's lawyer says the 47-year-old woman endured multiple
emotional tragedies, including the loss of her husband's affection and the death of a child. She has waived her right to a preliminary hearing and faces trial at a later date. Prosecutors say Jereleigh Morton met his second wife, a younger woman from Morocco, on the Internet. He was shot in his own bed on the day he was to fly to the north African country to try to
impregnate her. A Montgomery County prosecutor says the evidence against Myra
Morton is overwhelming.

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - The state Labor and Industry Department says there's no reason for its secretary to remove himself from the case of contractor accused of underpaying workers.
Pipersville-based Worth & Company is fighting a three-year ban on state work. Worth says Labor Secretary Stephen Schmerin shouldn't be involved in its case because he receives income from a labor union. The department's Bureau of Labor Law Compliance argues that
Worth only alleged a "remote and tangential connection" between Schmerin and any party to the case. The Labor and Industry Department maintains that Worth violated the state Prevailing Wage Act by misclassifying some workers as laborers, rather than as apprentices or journeymen, among other alleged misdeeds.

MIAMI (AP) - Miami City Manager Pete Hernandez says he is waiting for an opinion from his city's Commission on Ethics before deciding what action to take concerning Police Chief John Timoney. The chief, who used to be Philadelphia's police commissioner, has drawn criticism for his free use of a $54,000 sport utility vehicle for more than a year. Timoney says he hasn't broken any laws but acknowledges that his use of the Lexus RX Hybrid provided by a dealership raises ethical questions. Timoney says he bought the vehicle Wednesday for the
full sticker price in an effort to resolve the matter. The Miami area's 900-member Fraternal Order of Police local has scheduled an unusual no-confidence vote Sept. 4 in an effort to
oust Timoney.

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. (AP) - A volunteer firefighter in Cambria County is being charged with setting more fires. Nineteen-year-old Charles Shenego was arraigned in connection
with fires in trash containers outside an auto mechanic shop and a recycling center in May and this month. The Lower Yoder Volunteer Fire Company member was charged on Tuesday with arson, causing or risking a catastrophe, criminal mischief, and loitering and prowling at night.
Police accuse him of setting fire to two vacant homes last month and the auto garage this month.
Shenego's attorney says Shenego intends to accept responsibility for his actions and will receive mental health treatment.

WASHINGTON (Dow Jones/AP) - Further legal fallout from the case of the collapsed Adelphia Communications cable company once based in Coudersport (Pennsylvania). Auditing firm Deloitte & Touche has agreed to pay more than 167 million dollars to a trust set up to pursue litigation on behalf of Adelphia. This comes after a bankruptcy court approved a settlement
between the auditor and Adelphia. The deal settles a lawsuit Adelphia filed against the auditing
company in 2002, as well as a series of claims Deloitte filed in Adelphia's bankruptcy case.
Court papers show a federal bankruptcy judge in Manhattan approved the settlement last week without a hearing.

PITTSBURGH (AP) - Dunkin' Donuts is planning to roll into the Pittsburgh region on a historic scale. The Canton, Massachusetts-based chain plans to open 105 new restaurants in the city and throughout Allegheny County in the next several years. There are currently 10 Dunkin' Donuts locations in the area. The company says the expansion comes through an agreement
with Heartland Coffee of Pittsburgh. It's the largest store development deal in Dunkin' Donuts'
57-year history. The chain says it hopes to triple the number of Dunkin' Donuts stores in the U.S. by 2020, to 15,000.

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) - A small cargo plane carrying hazardous materials made an emergency landing at University Park Airport in State College yesterday. The FedEx plane landed without incident after the pilot reported smoke in the cockpit. No leaks to the hazardous materials were reported. Officials believe the smoke came from cargo labeled "bone
cement," which is used in medical procedures.

WAYNE, Pa. (AP) - Rose Bampton, a soprano who performed 18 seasons at the Metropolitan Opera and established herself as a premier voice in American opera, has died. She was 99.
Bampton died Tuesday in the Philadelphia suburb of Bryn Mawr. That's according to Mark Sullivan, parish administrator at St. David's Episcopal Church in nearby Wayne, where her family attended for years. Bampton made her professional debut in 1929. She appeared
several times with Leopold Stokowski and the Philadelphia Orchestra. She sang with such opera immortals as Lauritz Melchior, Helen Traubel, Rosa Ponselle, Jan Peerce and Ezio Pinza. She
recorded with Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Symphony, and a broadcast version of their "Fidelio" remains in print.


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