SUNDAY, MARCH 29, 2015

Newlywed Convicted In Killing
BEAVER, Pa. (AP) - A western Pennsylvania newlywed has been convicted of involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment in the shooting death of her niece hours after the ceremony. Jurors in Beaver County deliberated for about six hours Friday before convicting 31-year-old Christina George of Patterson Township in the April 24 death of 21-year-old Katelyn Francis of Fairmont, West Virginia. Police said the newlyweds had emerged from Jimmy K's Bar and Grille in New Brighton, about 30 miles north of Pittsburgh, when an argument erupted about who should drive home. The defendant testified that the handgun went off when she was trying to move it from her new husband's open glove box. She wept as her hands were cuffed behind her back and her relatives and friends cried as she was led from the courtroom. (Photo: WPXI)

Police Standoff Ends

PITTSBURGH (AP) - A man wanted by a federal marshal's task force has surrendered without incident and was escorted out of a western Pennsylvania home in handcuffs by state police, about eight hours after he first refused to come out. State police say 45-year-old Charles Cottle was wanted on a probation or parole violation when the task force went to the Hempfield Township apartment about 7 a.m. Friday. Cottle was with a woman police didn't immediately identify, but she was also handcuffed and escorted away by troopers before 3 p.m. It wasn't immediately clear whether Cottle or the woman will face charges in connection with the standoff. Cottle's violation warrant stems from a 2008 incident in which he was convicted of taking a fake bomb into a bank and holding eight people hostage for about two hours.. (Photo: WPXI)

Norwin High School Teacher Facing Drug Charges
IRWIN, Pa. (AP) - A western Pennsylvania high school teacher who is the daughter of the district's superintendent has been arrested on drug charges. Health teacher Lisa Rodnicki is being held in Westmoreland County after her arrest Thursday on heroin charges. Authorities say the 37-year-old Irwin resident sold 45 bags of heroin to a confidential informant for $300. Rodnicki has been placed on paid leave from Norwin High School, where she has worked since 2007. She is the daughter of Norwin School District Superintendent William Kerr. Her lawyer didn't immediately respond to a message seeking comment on the charges. Rodnicki is being held in lieu of $75,000 bail pending a scheduled April 8 preliminary hearing. (Photo: Trib)

Co-Pilot May Have Hidden Illness
German prosecutors say they have found evidence that the co-pilot of the Germanwings plan which crashed in the French Alps appears to have hidden evidence of an illness from his employers. Prosecutors in the western city of Duesseldorf say they seized medical documents from the home of Andreas Lubitz that indicate "an existing illness and appropriate medical treatment."
Prosecutor Ralf Herrenbrueck said in a statement today that torn-up sick notes for the day of the crash "support the current preliminary assessment that the deceased hid his illness from his employer and colleagues." He said the search of Lubitz's home revealed no suicide note or evidence of any political or religious motivation for his actions. (photo: Facebook)

Energy Officials Say U.S. Should Prepare To Drill
WASHINGTON (AP) - A U.S. Energy Department advisory council says the U.S. should immediately begin a push to exploit its enormous trove of oil in the Arctic waters off of Alaska, or risk a renewed reliance on imported oil in the future. The study released Friday says that in order for the U.S. to keep domestic production high and imports low, oil companies should start probing the Artic now because it takes decades of preparation and drilling to bring oil to market. Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson is chairman of the study committee and spoke to The Associated Press. He said it will take 20 to 40 years for Artic oil resources to become available. Environmental advocates say the Arctic ecosystem is too fragile to risk a spill, and cleanup would be difficult or perhaps even impossible because of weather and ice.

Cop Shootout Suspect Dead
BOSTON (AP) - Boston police say the officer who was seriously wounded in a shootout is a former Army Ranger who served in Iraq and was honored at the White House in May as a Top Cop Award winner. The shootout happened Friday evening in the city's Roxbury section. Police say a suspect in a motor vehicle stop opened fire on officers, seriously wounding 34-year-old John Moynihan before being killed by other officers. Police Commissioner William Evans says Moynihan was shot just below his right eye and is hospitalized in critical condition in an induced coma. He says the suspect died at the scene. An apparent bystander also was shot. Moynihan was honored by President Barack Obama for being one of the first responders in Watertown following the April 2013 gunbattle with the Boston Marathon bombers.

State Trooper Hit By Own Patrol Car; Badly Wounded
FRACKVILLE, Pa. (AP) - State police say a trooper was severely injured when he was struck by his own patrol car while helping a motorist on Interstate 81 in eastern Pennsylvania. Police say Sgt. Robert Bemis pulled over to the side of I-81 in Schuylkill (SKOO'-kul) County on Friday to help a man whose car had caught fire. They were standing near mile marker 121 when a passing motorist lost control of her SUV, which struck the unmarked patrol car, which hit Bemis and the man. Bemis, a 22-year state police veteran, was flown to Geisinger Medical Center in Danville with serious injuries. He is assigned to the Bureau of Training and Education in Hershey. The other man was taken to the hospital with minor injuries. The passing motorist and her two passengers were taken to a hospital for precautionary treatment. No charges have been filed. The interstate was closed for about five hours.

Two People Missing After NYC Gas Explosion
NEW YORK (AP) - Police are searching for at least two people still missing after an apparent gas line explosion leveled three New York City apartment buildings. Officials say canines will be used Saturday amid the rubble. Officials from the medical examiners' office will also be at the scene. Police have released posters seeking information on the whereabouts of Nicholas Figueroa and Moises Lucon. The 23-year-old Figueroa had been on a date at a sushi restaurant in the building where the destruction was centered. The 26-year-old Lucon worked there. Investigators believe an explosion amid plumbing and gas work inside the building was to blame for the blast that injured 22 people, four critically. Hours before the blast, Consolidated Edison utility workers visited the building and determined ongoing work there didn't pass an inspection.

Reid Not Seeking Re-Election
WASHINGTON (AP) - Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid is announcing he will not seek re-election to another term. The 75-year-old Reid says in a statement issued by his office Friday that he wants to make sure Democrats regain control of the Senate next year and that it would be "inappropriate" for him to soak up campaign resources when he could be focusing on putting the Democrats back in power. Reid also mentioned the Jan. 1 exercising accident that left him badly bruised and struggling to regain sight in his right eye. He said the accident had given him time to think, and that his first concern should be the country, the Senate and the state of Nevada. Reid was first elected to the Senate in 1986. (photo: Reid, L, with House Speaker John Boehner)

"Coach" Comes Out Of Retirement
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Craig T. Nelson is getting back in the coaching game for NBC. The network said that it has ordered 13 episodes of a sequel to the 1989-97 ABC sitcom that starred Nelson as Hayden Fox, head coach of a college football team. In the new series, nearly 20 years have passed and Fox has retired from coaching, NBC said Thursday. That's until he's called in to serve as assistant coach to his grown son, the new head coach at an Ivy League school in Pennsylvania. Barry Kemp, who created the previous series, will write and serve as executive producer. Details on other casting for the sequel or an air date were not announced. Nelson hasn't been away from TV. He co-starred in "Parenthood," which just wrapped a six-year run on NBC.

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