Wednesday September 25 2013

Feed(s): 

WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 2013

SANDUSKY SCANDAL

PENN STATE AND FOOTBALL FANS ARE CELEBRATING NOW THAT THE NCAA HAS DECIDED TO REDUCE THE PENALTIES. STARTING NEXT YEAR, SCHOLARSHIPS WILL BE RESTORED, BUT THE BOWL BAN AND FINES REMAIN IN PLACE. UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT RODNEY ERICKSON SAID IN A STATEMENT THAT THE DECISION NOW OPENS UP MORE OPPORTUNITIES FOR STUDENT ATHLETES TO CHOOSE PENN STATE. COACH BILL O’BRIEN SAYS HIS STAFF IS “ESPECIALLY PLEASED FOR THE PLAYERS, WHO HAVE PROVEN THEMSELVES TO BE A RESILIENT GROUP OF YOUNG MEN WHO ARE ABLE TO LOOK AHEAD, FOCUS AND OVERCOME ADVERSITY.” HE ADDS THAT “PENN STATE HAS LONG BEEN KNOWN FOR GRADUATING STUDENT-ATHLETES AND PROVIDING THEM WITH A WORLD CLASS EDUCATION. THE SCHOLARSHIP ADDITIONS WILL ALLOW US TO PROVIDE MORE STUDENT-ATHLETES WITH A TREMENDOUS OPPORTUNITY TO EARN THAT DEGREE AND PLAY FOOTBALL FOR PENN STATE.” NCAA OFFICIALS SAY THE ACTION WAS TAKEN IN RECOGNITION OF PENN STATE’S SIGNIFICANT PROGRESS UNDER, AND CONTINUED COMPLIANCE WITH, THE ATHLETICS INTEGRITY AGREEMENT.

PENN STATE’S 2ND ANNUAL CONFERENCE ON CHILD PROTECTION AND WELL-BEING BEGINS TODAY AT THE PENN STATER CONFERENCE CENTER IN STATE COLLEGE. THIS YEAR’S EVENT WILL ADDRESS THE NEED FOR CHILD ADVOCACY CENTERS ACROSS THE STATE AND THE KEYNOTE SPEAKER IS TERESA HUIZAR, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF NATIONAL CHILDRENS ALLIANCE.

GOODBYE TO A LOCAL JUDGE

A FUNERAL MASS IS SET FOR 10 THIS MORNING AT THE CATHEDRAL OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT IN ALTOONA. BISHOP MARK BARTCHAK WILL PRESIDE AS SENIOR BLAIR COUNTY JUDGE THOMAS PEOPLES IS LAID TO REST. HE DIED AFTER A BRIEF ILLNESS LAST WEEK AT THE AGE OF 77.

STUDENT DIES IN WRECK

A 2011 ALTOONA AREA HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATE HAS DIED IN A CRASH IN MOUNT JOY TOWNSHIP. 20 YEAR OLD ANNASTASIA LEBERFINGER ATTENDED INDIANA UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA. SHE AND 26 YEAR OLD MITCHELL RUNK OF MIDDLETOWN WERE BOTH EJECTED EARLY SATURDAY WHEN THEIR CAR STRUCK AN EMBANKMENT AND ROLLED OVER SEVERAL TIMES. POLICE AREN’T SURE WHO WAS DRIVING. RUNK IS LISTED IN FAIR CONDITION.

FATHER FACES SENTENCING TODAY

SENTENCING IS SCHEDULED TODAY IN CAMBRIA COUNTY COURT FOR 38 YEAR OLD BRIAN ROLES SENIOR OF EAST TAYLOR TOWNSHIP. A JURY CONVICTED HIM OF VEHICULAR HOMICIDE WHILE UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL AND PRESCRIPTION PILLS. ROLES’ 16 YEAR OLD SON, BRIAN JUNIOR, DIED WHEN HIS PICKUP CRASHED LAST YEAR. ROLES’ TEENAGE NEPHEW TESTIFIED THAT HE WAS PRESSURED BY HIS ENTIRE FAMILY, ESPECIALLY ROLES SENIOR, TO SAY BRIAN JUNIOR WAS DRIVING.

BOYFRIEND WILL STAND TRIAL FOR HOMICIDE

A DISTRICT JUDGE IN JOHNSTOWN HAS ORDERED 21 YEAR OLD DEMETRIUS GIBSON OF TIRE HILL TO STAND TRIAL FOR STABBING HIS GIRLFRIEND TO DEATH IN EARLY AUGUST AT A MOXHAM CAR WASH. GIBSON’S ATTORNEY TOM DICKEY SAYS IF GIBSON ACTUALLY KILLED ELIZABETH MILLER, IT WASN’T ON PURPOSE SO THIS SHOULD NOT BE A CRIMINAL HOMICIDE CASE. GIBSON…WHO TURNED HIMSELF IN MORE THAN 2 WEEKS AFTER THE STABBING…REMAINS IN THE CAMBRIA COUNTY PRISON. POLICE HAVE ALSO FILED DRUG CHARGES AFTER FINDING NEARLY 300 STAMP BAGS OF HEROIN INSIDE HIS VEHICLE A FEW HOURS AFTER THE STABBING.

FOSTER CHILD MISSING

STATE POLICE IN HUNTINGDON COUNTY ARE LOOKING FOR A MISSING 16 YEAR OLD GIRL. DARIAN OSCHEA DID NOT RETURN TO HER FOSTER HOME IN MOUNT UNION AFTER SCHOOL YESTERDAY. SHE WAS LAST SEEN NEAR THE SHEETZ STORE IN THE BORO, WEARING A LIME GREEN SHIRT AND BLUE LEVIS JEANS. DARIAN IS A WHITE FEMALE, 5-FOOT-4 AND 223 POUNDS WITH BROWN EYES AND BROWN SHOULDER-LENGTH HAIR. ANYONE WITH INFORMATION SHOULD CALL TROOPERS AT 627-31-61.

ALTOONA DRUG RAID

STATE AND LOCAL DRUG AGENTS RAIDED A HOUSE AT 10-11 18TH AVENUE IN ALTOONA YESTERDAY AND FOUND 161 PACKETS OF HEROIN WITH A STREET VALUE OF ABOUT 4-THOUSAND DOLLARS. THEY ALSO SEIZED 2 OUNCES OF CRACK COCAINE WORTH ABOUT 56-HUNDRED DOLLARS…A SMALL AMOUNT OF MARIJUANA…DRUG PARAPHERNALIA… AND 1-THOUSAND DOLLARS IN CASH. COPS ARRESTED ROMAN “SKEETER” MCCRAY OF PITTSBURGH…SEAN MORRIS OF WEST VIRGINIA…AND ALTOONA RESIDENTS HEATHER SAYLOR, ELIZABETH HORNBERGER, AND JOSEPH DESPOT.

CHANGING ALTOONA’S FORM OF GOVERNMENT?

THE GOVERNMENT STUDY COMMISSION MET IN ALTOONA LAST NIGHT TO DISCUSS ADOPTING A “HOME-RULE” FORM OF GOVERNMENT AS A WAY TO GET THE CITY OUT OF THE STATE’S DISTRESSED MUNICIPALITIES PROGRAM. CUTBACKS MIGHT BE NECESSARY AND THAT COULD MEAN PROBLEMS WITH LOCAL UNIONS. MEETINGS WILL CONTINUE.

FEWER LAWMAKERS IN HARRISBURG?

STATE HOUSE SPEAKER SAM SMITH OF PUNXSUTAWNEY SAYS HIS LEGISLATION DESIGNED TOP REDUCE THE SIZE OF THE PENNSYLVANIA LEGISLATURE HAS BEEN APPROVED BY THE HOUSE STATE GOVERNMENT COMMITTEE. F IT PASSES A VOTER REFERENDUM AND BECOMES LAW, LEGISLATIVE DISTRICTS WOULD DROP FROM 203 TO 153, EFFECTIVE AFTER THE YEAR 2020. SMITH SAYS A REDUCTION WOULD ALLOW LAWMAKERS TO BETTER UNDERSTAND THE IMPORTANCE OF EACH ISSUE IN DIFFERENT PARTS OF THE COMMONWEALTH…AND WOULD RESULT IN LAWS THAT ARE MORE EFFECTIVE AND TIMELY.

GAMELANDS FIRE PLANNED TODAY

IN BLAIR COUNTY TODAY, THE GAME COMMISSION PLANS TO CONDUCT A PRESCRIBED BURN ON 78 ACRES OF STATE GAME LAND 267 IN LOGAN TOWNSHIP. THIS MORNING, THE BURN BOSS WILL CONDUCT A “TEST BURN” TO CHECK THE FIRE BEHAVIOR AND SMOKE DISPERSION PATTERNS FOR THE DAY. IF THE TEST BURN SHOWS CONDITIONS ARE CORRECT WITHIN ESTABLISHED PARAMETERS, THE PRESCRIBED FIRE WILL BE A GO. FALLING GAS PRICES WESTERN PA GAS PRICES FELL ALMOST 5 CENTS TO AN AVERAGE OF $3.54 THIS WEEK, ACCORDING TO TRIPLE-A FUEL GAUGE. THE NATIONAL AVERAGE HAS DROPPED FOR 22 STRAIGHT DAYS, WHICH IS THE LONGEST STREAK IN 2013. TODAY'S AVERAGE FOR REGULAR UNLEADED IS $3.46, DOWN A NICKEL FROM ONE WEEK AGO…8 CENTS LESS THAN ONE MONTH AGO AND 35 CENTS LESS THAN THE SAME DAY LAST YEAR.