Today's News - Tuesday, May 13, 2014

State Attorney General Kathleen Kane says there is a heroin epidemic in Johnstown because the city is accessible off the highways. It’s the right size, and drug dealers know the police department is understaffed. She says that's why there's been a sudden spike in crime in Johnstown over the past couple of years. Last year, there were seven homicides attributed to drugs. Narcotics agents are now focusing on Johnstown, executing more search warrants, stopping more cars, and more heavily patrolling the streets.

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In Johnstown’s federal court, sentencing was scheduled today for convicted drug kingpin George Lowmaster of Carrolltown, but it’s been postponed until June 23. His mother, Dolly, pleaded guilty to marijuana possession and distribution conspiracy and was previously sentenced to five years probation, including a year on house arrest. His father, Gerald, pleaded to money laundering-related charges and received 46 months behind bars. Dozens of other members of the operation were also arrested. George Lowmaster could get up to 20 years.

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One of Johnstown's largest employers has been acquired by Aterian Investment Partners. Johnstown Wire Technologies currently employs 260 people and is the largest independent producer of high-quality carbon and alloy wire in North America. According to a news release, Aterian is a middle-market private equity firm that focuses on underperforming and unique situations that generate $25 to $500 million in revenue.

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The family of 20-year-old Linsey Wolfe of Johnstown believes she died in a tragic accident Saturday night at her home on Bloom Street in Dale Borough. Police say she argued with her boyfriend, 25-year-old Kyle Rodgers. He apparently got a gun from the bedroom mand went down the stairs. He told police Wolfe pushed him, and the gun went off, hitting her. Rodgers told police he was sorry. Rodgers is in the Cambria County Jail, charged with criminal homicide. His preliminary hearing is scheduled May 22.

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A military group plans to ask the Pentagon today to appoint a chaplain for atheist servicemembers. The Military Association of Atheists and Free Thinkers says current chaplains don't provide enough outreach for military personnel who don't believe in God.

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A police officer in New Hampshire is dead after being shot just before a house exploded on Monday. The state's attorney general says Brentwood officer Steve Arkell was fatally shot while responding to a domestic disturbance. Authorities believe Arkell was shot by a man who died either in the fire or the explosion.

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Researchers think the wreck of a very famous ship may be resting off the northern coast of Haiti. It could be what remains of Christopher Columbus' flagship the Santa Maria which ran aground more than five centuries ago.

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U.S. Senate Republicans are not voting on a long-delayed oil pipeline. On Monday they blocked an energy bill backed by manufacturers and environmentalists. That block forfeited a vote on the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

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The United States is now flying manned surveillance missions over Nigeria in hopes of locating more than 200 missing schoolgirls. The girls were kidnapped almost a month ago by the militant Islamist group Boko Haram. A new video released on Monday shows about 130 of the girls.

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Presidential spokesman Jay Carney says the White House remains very concerned about problems at the Veterans Administration and takes the situation very seriously. Carney noted that a comprehensive review is ongoing at VA health clinics across the U.S.

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A patient diagnosed with a potentially deadly virus called MERS is responding well to treatment at an Orlando, Florida hospital. The 44-year-old man is only the second domestic case of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome confirmed by the CDC.

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The wife of the driver killed in a fiery car crash along with "Fast and Furious" actor Paul Walker is suing Porsche Cars North America. Kristine Rodas filed the lawsuit Monday in Los Angeles. She claims the 2005 Porsche Carrera GT her husband Roger Rodas was driving at the time of the 2013 crash had faulty mechanics that caused the fatal accident.

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Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling is apologizing for recorded racist comments that got him banned for life from the NBA. Sterling also told CNN's Anderson Cooper he was "baited" into making the remarks. The interview aired last night and Sterling admitted he was jealous his girlfriend was bringing African-American men to Clippers games.

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A Satanic Black Mass at Harvard is not going to happen. The Harvard Extension School Cultural Studies Club released a statement Monday night saying they were unable to come to terms with The Middle East club to host the event.

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Perhaps wine and chocolate don't lead to improved health as once thought. Researchers at Johns Hopkins University have found that the compound resveratrol, found in wine and chocolate, was not associated with longevity or a decrease in heart disease or cancer.

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Witnesses describe Beyonce's sister Solange Knowles as looking extremely angry after leaving a New York City hotel last week, presumably after her alleged attack on brother-in-law Jay Z. Footage from the elevator altercation at The Standard Hotel has gone viral after it was leaked to the press.

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Pittsburgh drivers are among the nation's most polite, while Houston is home to the nation's worst road ragers. The Texas city is at the top of a new AutoVantage survey of cities with angry drivers. Atlanta, Baltimore, Washington, DC and Boston were also on the top five of cities with the most road rage. Portland was at the top of that list of the best mannered drivers, followed by Pittsburgh, St. Louis, San Francisco and Charlotte.

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