Today's News - Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A Cambria County jury yesterday convicted 49-year-old Albert Baldish, Sr. of Johnstown on all 51 counts of molesting a young girl for several years beginning when she was 6. Baldish is now in the County Prison awaiting sentencing.

-0-

State drug agents arrested Clinton Mickens, Jr. of Johnstown yesterday after making a controlled heroin buy on the 1700 block of Seventh Avenue in Altoona. Mickens also faces charges for delivering 50 bags of heroin into the Altoona area back in March.  He was already on parole for a previous drug conviction.

-0-

21-year-old Nathan Diehl of Portage Borough was locked up in the Cambria County Prison this week, accused of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl.  State police say the incidents occurred inside his Mountain Avenue home. Bail is set at 30,000 dollars.

-0-

A South Fork woman has been accused of stealing wallets from customers shopping at area stores. Richland Township Police charged Robin Hamilton in connection with the thefts. She stole around 240 dollars.

-0-

Conemaugh Township Elementary School will open in time for the new school year, “The Tribune-Democrat” reports. Construction on the building is ongoing, but classes will begin August 26.

-0-

Two men who stole a truck and led police on a back-road chase in Somerset County earlier this month will go to trial. Gregory Wills, Jr. and Wayne Jarvis waived their rights to a preliminary hearing. A police officer on a motorcycle tried to stop their vehicle for speeding on August 5, the two men then tried to run the officer over and then began the multiple municipal chase before driving the truck into a ditch.

-0-

Good news for drivers: AAA fuel gauge says western Pennsylvania gas prices fell six cents to $3.59 this week.  Today's national average for regular unleaded is $3.54, seven cents less than a week ago and 15 cents less than on this date last year.

-0-

Funeral services will be held today in Scranton for a former Pennsylvania governor. William Scranton died in late July at his home in California. He was 96. All state flags, lowered in his honor, should be returned to their full height Thursday.

-0-

Governor Tom Corbett yesterday ceremonially signed Senate Bill 5, which provides 4 million dollars in the current state budget to fund community health centers and additional medical services in rural and underserved areas of the state.  The grants, distributed by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, require a matching commitment.

-0-

At least 40 are dead and 200 arrested during a security operation to clear anti-military protests in Cairo, Egypt. Among the dead are a U.K. news cameraman and the 17-year-old daughter of leading politician Mohamed Beltagi.

-0-

A large UPS cargo plane crashed in a field outside Birmingham, Alabama early today. No word yet on any deaths or injurues.

-0-

At least a dozen homes in Summit County, Utah have been reduced to ashes by a wildfire.  The blaze is also threatening more than 200 other homes. The Rockport Five Fire has blackened at least four thousand acres.  Evacuations were ordered for approximately 300 homes near the blaze.

-0-

The California girl who was kidnapped and taken to Idaho by a family friend is speaking out about her ordeal.  Hannah Anderson broke her silence on the social media website ask.fm.  She says she and her family were duped by James Dimaggio to go up to his home.  Dimaggio tied up her eight-year-old brother and mother in the garage before driving away toward Idaho.

-0-

The New Jersey Democratic Senate primary is going to Cory Booker.  The Newark mayor moves a step closer to being the state's first African-American U.S. Senator.  Booker will face Republican Steve Lonegan in a special election on October 16. 

-0-

Huge investments by power companies and stricter maintenance standards are helping to make a massive blackout like the one that hit the Northeast ten years ago far less likely. It was on August 14th, 2003 when some untrimmed tree branches in Ohio disabled several power lines and set off a cascading outage causing 50-million people to lose power. 

-0-

Officials in San Diego have dropped the idea of including co-sponsorship with Mexico in their bid to host the Olympic games in 2024.  However, they still would have some of the sports venues on the other side of the border.  The International Olympic Committee is expected to name the host city in 2017.

-0-

One of two enormous snakes that went missing in Crawford County, Missouri has been located.  The two pet boa constrictors, a male and female nine-and-ten-feet long, escaped out of the window of a trailer in the town of Bourbon.  Residents are especially worried after news last week about two young Canadian boys killed by a pet python.

-0-

A Houston woman is facing burglary charges after allegedly posing as a realtor to rob homes.  According to Houston's KTRK TV, Rebecca Lynn Bench was arrested this week in connection with a July 5 burglary, where she and Laura Kristen Campas allegedly acted as real estate agents to gain access to a Houston home.  Apparently, the homeowners allowed the two suspects to be in their house when they weren't at home.  When they returned the phony realtors were gone along with several items from the home.  The pair is also believed to be responsible for a similar case that happened later in July.  So far Campas is at large and wanted for questioning. 

-0-

Two mountain climbers in Austria might choose to tough it out the next time around.  Authorities tell Austria's ORF broadcasting the climbers are facing consequences for pretending to be in jeopardy in order to get a helicopter ride down the mountain.  Back in June the two friends had climbed a peak near Salzburg.  They wrote in a climber's book at the top of the mountain that they were "going back by helicopter," and then called for the rescue chopper to pick them up.  The climbers have been fined 3,100 dollars each for their ride, and prosecutors are now investigating the matter.  They say they'll prosecute if they determine the rescue was an abuse of emergency services.  If the climbers are tried and found guilty, they could be sentenced to as much as six months behind bars and receive additional fines.

-0-

Two would-be robbers are behind bars after a restaurant owner told them to return after one hour.  According to the “Chicago Tribune,” the men entered the restaurant demanding food.  One reportedly told the owner “I will kill you; I have a gun with me,” and flashed what appeared to be a gun under a red t-shirt.  Out of concern for his customers, the owner asked them to return in an hour.  After the pair left, he called authorities, who waited for the suspects to come back.  A little after midnight on Monday morning, the two men showed up and were arrested.  A search of the suspects' home eventually turned up the “gun” – a black squirt gun in that looked like a Mac-10.  The would-be robbers are each facing one count of attempted aggravated robbery.

-0-

The police department in Hillsboro, Oregon is gaining national attention for their creative recruiting tactic.  According to Oregon's KPTV, the department is searching for a new police chief and recently released a video with officers acting in a series of comedic sketches.  Since the video made headlines, it has been viewed over 20,000  times.  The search for a new top cop came after Police Chief Carey Sullivan resigned earlier this year.  The department then turned to a local production company, who enlisted the department's own officers to shoot the short film.  While the creative video is catching eyes, its 9,000 dollar price tag is also raising eyebrows.  Hillsboro resident Lucy Gutierrez says she doesn't think it was “necessary” to make the video.  She also says the taxpayer's “money could be used in a better way.” 

-0-

Beyonce's epic halftime show at this year's Superbowl was the biggest social media television event of the past two years, according to new numbers released by Twitter. The performance received 268 thousand tweets per minute, beating out the past two State of the Union addresses and other big political events.  Last month's NBA finals was the only sporting event to come close to the Superbowl, earning 150 thousand tweets per minute.  Other moments among the top 20 most-tweeted included last year's Olympic closing ceremonies in London and the 2013 Grammys.  “Argo's” big win at last year's Oscars saw an impressive 85 thousand tweets per minute.  The Discovery Channel's “Sharknado” movie made it on the list as well, bringing in over five-thousand tweets per minute when it premiered last month.

-0-

Most young couples aren't going spending beyond their means on their weddings.  A poll conducted by bluepromocode.com studied the shopping trends of couples under the age of 35.  The majority said that 2,500 dollars was the maximum appropriate amount for a young couple to spend on an engagement ring.  Thirty-eight percent said they spent or plan on spending less than 10 thousand dollars total for their wedding.  For locations, women said they prefer to have a traditional church wedding, but enjoy attending outdoor and beach weddings of their friends and relatives.  Target and Bed, Bath and Beyond were named the most popular stores where young couples register.  

Category: