Today's News - Thursday, May 15, 2014

In Johnstown Wednesday afternoon, fire gutted a home in Franklin Borough and damaged the siding and roof of a house next door along the 1200 block of Main Street. The resident was not home when the blaze broke out and there were no injuries. A state police fire marshal is investigating the cause.

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Eighteen-year-old Nicholas Ferguson of Colver is in the Cambria County Jail after his mother called police and said he had stolen two vehicles from her home. Authorities say Ferguson also took two other vehicles and an ATV from residences in Colver. He may also be involved in other vehicle thefts in the Cambria Township area. A preliminary hearing is pending.

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When a burglar failed to find money in a cash register at Moo Echo Dairy in Somerset, food was stolen instead. The burglar took a six-pound ham, three gallons of ice cream and possibly a bag of rolls. Surveillance footage is being reviewed.

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In Cambria County Court yesterday, 38-year-old Bernard Brown, of Johnstown, waived his right to a preliminary hearing. Brown is accused of sexually assaulting two children, including an 8-year-old girl who says he once tied her to a bed.

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More news concerning Johnstown’s unpopular sewer upgrade project. According to “The Tribune-Democrat,” new councilman Frederick Mikel introduced a motion to at least temporarily suspend the pressure test mandate during a council meeting yesterday, but that motion was tabled. Council members will meet with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection tomorrow.

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National Dog Bite Prevention Week is coming up and a new report issued by State Farm Insurance says Pennsylvania is one of the top states in the country for dog bite insurance claims, ranking number five last year and racking up $5.8 million in damages for about 180 claims. California topped the list, followed by Illinois, Ohio and Texas.

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Flags are going to be flown at half-staff statewide today. Governor Tom Corbett issued the order in recognition of National Peace Officers Memorial Day, which honors the memory of law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty. 105 police officers were killed in the line of duty in 2013, including two from Pennsylvania.

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The President and First Lady will officially dedicate the national 9-11 Museum and Memorial today. The museum features steel remnants of the twin towers and the remains of firetrucks that were crushed when the towers collapsed. There are also phone messages from many of those who died in the terrorist attacks.

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Casey Kasem is no longer missing. Just hours after a missing person's report was filed to locate the radio icon came word late Wednesday that he had been found. Kasem's family issued a statement saying they had received confirmation that he has been located and that they were doing everything in their power to bring him back home.

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More than half a dozen brush fires are still challenging firefighters in northern San Diego County. The campus of Cal State San Marcos has been evacuated. In the coastal city of Carlsbad, eight homes have been destroyed. California Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency for San Diego County late Wednesday night.

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The captain and three crew members of a South Korean ferry that sank last month are charged with murder. Prosecutors filed charges today against the captain, chief engineer, and first and second mates. Eleven other crew members have been indicted on charges of abandonment and violating a ship safety act.

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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie predicts the Bridgegate scandal will have no impact on his political career. Speaking at a Peterson Foundation Forum in Washington DC, Christie expressed confidence that the George Washington Bridge traffic fiasco won't hurt him because he "didn't do anything."

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There's an important meeting today in Washington, DC that could determine how much you pay for wireless cell phone service and how well it works. The Federal Communications Commission wants TV stations around the country to sell back their licenses for low band spectrum that they don't use. The plan could reduce cell phone dead spots. A Muslim civil rights group is demanding an investigation into an FBI agent who shot and killed an acquaintance of one of the accused Boston Marathon bombers. The Florida chapter of the Council on Islamic-American Relations claims the agent has a "checkered history."

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Embattled Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki will be grilled in a Senate hearing set for Thursday. Shinseki is under fire over problems at V.A. health clinics. He has ordered a comprehensive review of all V.A. health clinics, including scheduling problems that may have led to the deaths of at least 40 veterans at the V.A.'s facility in Phoenix.

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Convicted murderer Joran Van Der Sloot is soon to be married to his Peruvian pregnant girlfriend in an upcoming prison ceremony in the South American country. Van Der Sloot's lawyer says all the necessary paperwork has been duly filed with local authorities paving the way for his client to wed Leydi Figueroa. Van Der Sloot is the primary suspect in the disappearance of Alabama high school senior Natalee Holloway while on the Dutch island of Aruba during a class trip in 2005.

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Fast-food workers are planning to strike in more than 150 cities across America. Workers at McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's and KFC are expected to walk off their jobs Thursday as they call on employers to pay them a minimum wage of $15 per hour.

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The Detroit High School teacher who was fired earlier this month after using a broom to break up a fight now says she may not want her job back. After a week and a half of national attention, the Education Achievement Authority of Michigan offered Tiffani Eaton her job back earlier this week. Eaton made a statement that she wasn't sure she could accept her job back without certain "assurances being made."

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The FBI is offering a reward of 20-thousand dollars for information leading to the missing wife of a headless man. Eighty-seven-year-old Shirley Dermond of Putnam County in Georgia hasn't been seen since her husband's decapitated body was found at their home on May 6. Investigators believe she may have been kidnapped.

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"Two and a Half Men" will end a long and successful run on CBS with a 12th and final season. Network executives announced plans to end the show after its next season in a statement issued Wednesday. Series creator Chuck Lorre is reportedly working on a season-long event to send off the comedy.

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"Flappy Bird" is coming back. The popular mobile app will be back in app stores this summer. Creator Dong Nguyen told CNBC on Wednesday the mobile gaming sensation will be available in August. Nguyen says he was making $50,000 a day from the app that had more than 50 million downloads before he pulled it in February. Nguyen says he took down the game because he noticed people were too addicted to playing it.

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The hotel staffer behind the video leak of the attack on rapper Jay Z by his sister-in-law Solange Knowles is out of a job. Reps for New York's Standard Hotel tell NBC News they have fired the person "responsible for breaching the security policies of the hotel." The hotel also says it's "pursuing all available civil and criminal remedies."

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Barbara Walters isn't necessarily ruling out a comeback. At her retirement party in New York City Wednesday, the broadcast vet offered a "see you later" instead of goodbye. According to TheWrap.com, Walters told the crowd gathered for her farewell, "Who knows what the future brings?"

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