May 23, 2013
Latest Pennsylvania news, sports, business and entertainment
Ex-PSU prez seeks dismissal of criminal charges
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) _ Former Penn State President Graham Spanier is asking a county judge to throw out criminal charges accusing him of helping to cover up abuse allegations against former assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky.
Spanier's lawyers filed the motion last week, citing his allegation that the university's former top lawyer violated attorney-client confidentiality when she gave prosecutors information about him.
He's also arguing that some of the charges were filed after the statute of limitations had run out.
Spanier remains a faculty member while fighting the accusations that he and other administrators committed crimes as they responded to complaints about Sandusky, who was convicted last summer of 45 counts of child sex abuse.
Spanier was charged in November along with former Athletic Director Tim Curley and retired Vice President Gary Schultz.
PHILLY POLICE SHOOTINGS
Philly police shoot, kill 2 suspects after chases
PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Police say officers shot and killed two armed suspects in Philadelphia after pursuits in different parts of the city.
WPVI-TV says officers were called to a Germantown intersection at about 9 p.m. Wednesday.
Police say they chased a suspect on foot, firing when he turned and pointed the weapon at them. He was pronounced dead at the scene. His name has not been released.
At about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday in west Philadelphia, officers chased two armed men after they fled.
Chief Inspector Scott Small said one ran into a moving vehicle, and as officers moved in to arrest him, he pointed his gun at them.
Small said both officers fired, and the suspect was hit once and later died at a hospital. He has not been identified.
Faith healers charged with murder after 2nd death
PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ A Philadelphia couple who believe in faith healing over medicine and who were on probation in their son's 2009 pneumonia death have been charged with murder after a second child died.
Herbert and Catherine Schaible (SHY'-bull) face third-degree murder, child endangerment and other charges in the April death of their 8-month-old son, Brandon. Prosecutors call Brandon's death ``eerily similar'' to that of his 2-year-old brother Kent in 2009.
First Assistant District Attorney Ed McCann says the Schaibles are entitled to their religious beliefs _ but not when it endangers their children.
The Schaibles are members and former teachers at the First Century Gospel Church in northeast Philadelphia.
Catherine Schaible declined to comment earlier Wednesday. Defense lawyers call the couple loving parents who did not intend for their sons to die.
Child killed in western Pa. picnic shooting ID'd
PITTSBURGH (AP) _ Authorities in western Pennsylvania have identified a toddler killed when gunfire erupted during a backyard picnic in Pittsburgh, also injuring two women.
The Allegheny County medical examiner's office said Wednesday that the victim was 1-year-old Marcus White Jr. of the Homewood section of the city.
Police said as many as three gunmen jumped out of a vehicle and opened fire on the group in the city's crime-ridden East End at about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, leaving the road littered with dozens of shell casings
A 20-year-old woman reportedly found lying on top of the child in an apparent effort to shield him was listed in critical condition after surgery at UPMC Presbyterian hospital. A 19-year-old woman was in serious but stable condition.
Police don't believe the victims were the intended targets.
Philly police release shooting video, seek info
PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Philadelphia Police are releasing video from a shooting at a men's club earlier this month and asking the public for any information about two suspects.
The video posted online Wednesday shows one man shooting an AK-47 in the parking lot of the Purple Orchid Gentlemen's Club in the Elmwood neighborhood, then going into the club and firing more shots.
The gunman suspect is being identified as 21-year-old Henry Pettigrew. Police are also looking for information about a second suspect, a black man in his 20s, who drove a light sedan that could be a Hyundai or Mitsubishi.
Police say one person was shot in the attack, which took place at 2 a.m. on May 11. The club is on South 61st Street.
Anyone with information should call 911.
PHILLY OFFICER ARRESTED
Philly police officer accused of robbing dealer
PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ A Philadelphia police officer has been arrested and charged in federal court with working with another person to set up and rob suspected drug dealers.
Prosecutors allege that Officer Jeffrey Walker, a 24-year veteran of the force and longtime narcotics officer, repeatedly spoke this month with an unnamed person who turned out to be an FBI informant about different robbery plans.
Authorities allege that he planted drugs in a suspected dealer's car outside a west Philadelphia bar on Tuesday and he and the informant later left the suspected dealer's home with $15,000 cash and marijuana.
Walker is charged with robbery and extortion and misusing his position as a police officer to obtain property, cash and marijuana.
A Fraternal Order of Police representative did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
TRANSIT AGENCY-CREWS SHORTAGES
SEPTA says canceled trains reflect chronic problem
(Information in the following story is from: The Philadelphia Inquirer, http://www.philly.com)
PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ The transit agency serving southeastern Pennsylvania says crew shortages prompted cancellation of eight trains last weekend, and the problem is chronic and may worsen.
The Philadelphia Inquirer says the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority is citing a 2011 toughening of federal work rules that have reduced the number of hours crews on passenger trains can work in a week or month.
SEPTA engineers and conductors work overtime each week and are paid accordingly due to a shortage of qualified workers, complex rush-hour scheduling and the agency's desire to limit costs for employee benefits.
SEPTA has 194 locomotive engineers and needs 213 for full staffing. Five conductors who have completed training to be engineers will be working this week and 16 more are being trained in a yearlong program.
Pa. auditor general gives layoff notices to 67
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) _ Dozens of employees of the Pennsylvania auditor general's office are in line to be laid off because of budget cuts.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Wednesday that the affected workers have been offered help with unemployment benefits and finding other work.
The layoffs are expected in mid-June, unless the state budget includes more money than expected for the governmental watchdog body.
Officials with the agency say they've also been cutting its vehicle fleet and making other changes to save money.
The layoffs will leave the auditor general with a workforce of 476 people.
Occupy Easton protesters ordered to leave Thursday
(Information in the following story is from: The (Easton, Pa.) Express-Times, http://www.lehighvalleylive.com )
EASTON, Pa. (AP) _ Officials in the eastern Pennsylvania city of Easton have told Occupy protesters to leave by noon Thursday or be cited for trespassing.
The (Easton) Express-Times says police officers on Wednesday evening told protesters that they were violating nuisance, sanitation and disorderly conduct ordinances.
Members of the protest movement returned two weeks ago to downtown Easton, where they had camped in late 2011 as protests were waged around the country alleging corporate greed.
Protester Chris Leaning said he wasn't surprised by the eviction order and members would meet on the issue and seek legal advice.
Mayor Sal Panto Jr. said residents have complained about noise and disruption.
Leaning said the group isn't breaking any laws and has kept the area clean and litter-free.
Corbett says Latino comment taken out of context
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) _ Gov. Tom Corbett's office says his comments about a lack of Latinos on his staff were taken out of context to discredit him.
The first-term Republican said in response to a question at an Al Dia newsmedia-sponsored event in Philadelphia last week that he did not have any Latinos on his staff. Then he asked people at the forum to help him find one.
His office issued a statement Wednesday that said he was only referring to his immediate staff, a small group.
His press secretary, Kevin Harley, says Corbett has appointed ``numerous'' Latinos, including former Health Secretary Eli Avila.
At the forum, the governor also said increasing employment was ``in the best interest of every nationality in Pennsylvania.''
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