Today's News - Wednesday, April 2, 2014

A preliminary hearing is scheduled today for 31-year-old Robert Rigo of Stoystown who is in the Somerset County Jail accused of beating David Kimmel and breaking nearly every bone in his face. It happened last month at Lape Trailer Park in Holsopple. The victim is a Marine and, according to witnesses, the fight was over a woman at a party.

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57-year-old Russell Shick of Clearfield County was scheduled for a preliminary hearing yesterday in connection with a drive-by bar shooting, but several witnesses did not show up, so the hearing has been postponed. Police say Shick fired into George’s Tavern in Dysart back in October, injuring 31-year-old Robert Edgar of Coalport. Shick had been kicked out of the bar earlier that night. Edgar died in February following an ATV accident.

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A status conference is scheduled today in the stay of execution for Stephen Rex Edmiston. Governor Tom Corbett signed the warrant and he was scheduled to receive a lethal injection on April 16, but US District Judge Kim Gibson in Johnstown granted a stay because his rights of appeal have not been exhausted. Edmiston was convicted in the kidnapping, rape and brutal murder of 2-year-old Bobbi Jo Matthew who was taken from a home in Beccaria, Clearfield County, in 1988.

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A well-known former Johnstown businessman has pleaded guilty to a harassment charge related to an incident that took place in what is now Asiago’s Italian Restaurant. 56-year-old Andy Lasky, of Westmont, was sentenced to 90 days probation. He was part of a dispute that broke out at the restaurant in June, which once housed a business he owned, over the removal of certain property. He was asked to leave the property and refused.

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Two motorcyclists led Richland police on a high speed chase Monday and now face felony charges of fleeing and eluding police. Authorities say 25-year-old Adam Kelly and 20-year-old Christian Forosisky were going 66 in a 35 zone and cut in front of a school bus with a couple dozen children on board. They are in the Cambria County Jail after failing to post bond.

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After members of Johnstown City Council failed to come to a consensus about who should fill an empty council seat, they handed the task over to Cambria County Judge Timothy Creany. According to “The Tribune-Democrat,” eleven people have applied for the seat. The vacancy was created after councilman Frank Janakovic left in order to become city mayor at the beginning of the year.

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State police are warning drivers about the “Steer Clear Law” which is designed to protect police, emergency responders and tow truck operators. When you approach a traffic stop, tow truck responding to a disabled vehicle or a construction crew, you must move over to the other lane if at all possible. If it is not possible, you should proceed at a reasonable speed. Failure to obey the law could mean a fine of up to $250. Troopers will be doing targeted enforcement of this law.

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Jay Paterno’s name has been officially removed from the Democratic primary ballot for lieutenant governor. Paterno announced his withdrawal Friday, two days after the deadline. The “Centre Daily Times” says the commonwealth court granted his request. Five candidates are still seeking the nomination.

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Hawaii's tsunami advisory is still in effect but no inland flooding is expected. The advisory was issued due to yesterday's magnitude 8.2 earthquake that hit off the coast of Chile. The powerful quake created a tsunami that hit the northern part of the country.

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General Motors CEO Mary Barra is back in the hot seat today over GM's massive recalls. She is scheduled to be questioned by a Senate committee on the recall of faulty ignition switches. During her appearance in front of a House subcommittee yesterday, Barra said the company is waiting for the results of an internal investigation on why the repairs were delayed for years.

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Unprofessional behavior is not tolerated in the Secret Service. That's the message delivered by the head of the Secret Service, Julia Pierson, who was called to Capitol Hill Tuesday after three agents were sent home for drinking during President Obama's recent trip to the Netherlands. One of them was reportedly found passed out in a hotel hallway.

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A British nuclear submarine is joining a search crew of nearly two dozen ships and planes that are hoping to find clues to the whereabouts of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. Planes and ships are arriving at the search area for another day in the hunt for the missing Malaysian airliner. Experts say the batteries in the plane's black box will fail in the next few days. The device is designed to ping for 30 days but the plane disappeared more than three weeks ago.

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President Obama is applauding a milestone in the evolution of the Affordable Care Act. A last-minute surge pushed enrollment in HealthCare.gov to more than seven-million people. Speaking in the Rose Garden Tuesday, the President said millions of people have been able to find quality, affordable health insurance and "peace of mind." The President noted that people who started the process before Monday's midnight deadline will be given time to complete their enrollments.

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Terrorist networks are using social media to encourage lone wolf terrorist attacks in the U.S. In a briefing at NYPD headquarters Tuesday, police said al-Qaeda is using YouTube and Facebook to successfully recruit Westerners and urge them to copy acts like the Boston Marathon bombings. Meanwhile, Police Commissioner Bill Bratton says they are not aware of any threat against New York City or the Jewish community as Passover nears.

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A controversial religious freedom bill is getting the approval of Mississippi lawmakers. Legislators voted Tuesday to pass the measure, which allows residents to sue over laws that hinder their religious practices. Opponents say it will be used to discriminate against gay people.

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The official death toll in the massive Washington state mudslide is now at 28. The Snohomish County Medical Examiner's Office announced the figure today, which is up from 24 the day before. Twenty-two people are still listed as missing as a result of the March 22 slide.

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President Obama is expected to promote a minimum wage hike at a Michigan college. The President will speak this afternoon about his campaign to increase the national minimum wage to $10.10 at University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. The federal minimum wage was last increased in 2007.

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Thousands of people are paying tribute to a pair of Boston firefighters who were killed in the line of duty. Firefighters from across the nation attended a wake for Lieutenant Ed Walsh in Watertown, Mass. His funeral Mass is this morning. Later today a wake will be held in West Roxbury for firefighter Michael Kennedy. His funeral Mass is tomorrow.

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Financier Charles Keating is dead at the age of 90. Keating played a leading role in the savings and loan scandal from the 1980s that implicated five U.S. senators, including John McCain and Dennis DeConcini. Keating served five years in a federal prison after being convicted of securities fraud and other charges in connection with the collapse of Lincoln Savings and Loan.

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A high school senior from Shirley, New York is beaming with pride after being accepted to all eight Ivy League schools in the nation. Kwasi Enin received letters from Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, Brown, Columbia, Yale and the University of Pennsylvania. Enin is a first-generation American whose parents emigrated from Ghana.

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An online dating site isn't showing Mozilla love over its new CEO's stance on gay marriage. OkCupid.com users who accessed the site with Mozilla's Firefox on Tuesday received a message criticizing the activities of CEO Brendan Eich. A Mozilla spokesman said that Eich's donation in support of Proposition 8, which would outlaw gay marriage in California, does not reflect the position of the company.

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Two people are behind bars after reportedly collecting welfare while living on a million-dollar yacht. The pair was arrested in Florida on Tuesday. They are accused of defrauding the public assistance programs in both Florida and Minnesota all while claiming ties to Scottish royalty.

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People are looking at their mobile devices more than ever. A new study by mobile tracking company Flurry says mobile usage is up almost five minutes from last year, with the average consumer staring at their smartphones or tablets for almost two-hours and 42 minutes a day. Apps account for almost 90 percent of the average mobile consumer's time.

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Donald Trump is thinking about buying a professional football team. Trump told a Buffalo radio station he has been approached about buying the Buffalo Bills. Trump says he would be interested and will look into investing in the team.

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AAA Fuel Gauge says Western Pa. gas prices fell just a fraction of a penny, remaining at $3.65 a gallon for the third straight week. Today’s national average is $3.56, three cents more expensive than one week ago and ten cents more than one month ago.

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