School Delays 

Friday, February 28, 2020

  If you see news happening, call the WJPA Newsroom at (724) 222-3522

Local News

Canonsburg Police Need Help Locating Teenager

(WPXI)-Canonsburg Police are asking for help in locating a missing teenager. Fifteen year old Joshua “JJ” Harsh did not come home from Canon McMillan High School on Thursday afternoon. Harsh is 6 feet 3 inches tall and weighs 190 pounds. He was last seen wearing black sweat pants and a dark colored hoodie and was carrying a backpack. If anyone has information regarding Harsh’s whereabouts, Canonsburg Police ask that you contact 911 to ensure prompt police response.

One Dead; Two In Custody After WVU Shooting

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. —One person is dead, and two suspects are in custody, according to University Police, after an early morning shooting at an apartment complex near West Virginia University’s downtown Morgantown campus. “Multiple agencies responded to support our department at the scene,” said UPD Chief W.P. Chedester. “We appreciate their cooperation and assistance as our investigation continues.” The medical examiner has been called. University Police is not releasing additional information at this time as its investigation is ongoing. Counselors from WVU’s Carruth Center are onsite at College Park to provide support for residents.

Investigation Continues Into Ruschel Studio Fire

The cause of a fire at a downtown Washington photography studio is under investigation.  The blaze broke out just after seven in the Ruschel Studio building at 120 N. Main Street.  Washington Fire Chief Gerry Coleman tells WJPA News that two residents of the building, believed to be a husband and wife were taken to the hospital for treatment of minor injuries, possibly smoke inhalation.  There has been no word on their conditions.  Officials say there are four apartments located above the photography studio and they house seven people.  Everyone was safely evacuated.  Authorities say they believe the blaze may have started in the basement, but the investigation is continuing.  Many of those who escaped the burning building went across the street to Joe’s Bakery until Red Cross volunteers arrived.  Main Street between Chestnut and Beau Street was closed throughout the morning. (Photo:  Facebook)

Charleroi Investigates ‘Fight Club’

CHARLEROI, Pa. — (WPXI) – The Charleroi Area School District is taking action after a fight club page was created on Instagram that showed underage students fighting. District officials said they are aware of the page and had Instagram remove the profile for violation of its community guidelines. Multiple videos were posted by the account showing middle and high school students fighting. The top of the account’s bio read, “Send me fight videos to post on this page and if you snitch you’re going to be on here.” Chuck Balieu, owner of Moke’s Martial Arts, is one of many people who alerted the district about this account. “We teach students that fighting is the last resort, and to see that being promoted on social media was very concerning,” said Balieu. “I think videos like this would promote bullying as more kids would see this and try to imitate the actions.” On Thursday, the solicitor for the school district told Channel 11 they figured out who created the account and had it removed. The district released the following statement:
“The Charleroi Area School District is aware of the Instagram page and has been proactively working since yesterday to investigate this matter and have Instagram remove the profile for violations of Instagram’s community guidelines. While the District cannot comment on specific student matters, we can assure parents, guardians, and students that appropriate steps have already been and will continue to be taken regarding this matter. Charleroi Area School District will always place the health, safety, and welfare of our school community at the forefront of every decision made.”

State Sued Over Counting Inmates In Legislative Districts

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – A new lawsuit seeks to end the practice in Pennsylvania of counting state inmates as residents of the district where they are incarcerated. The petition filed Thursday in Commonwealth Court argues it violates constitutional requirements that elections be free and equal and that state legislative districts be about the same size. The defendants are the state of Pennsylvania, Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar. An administration spokesman isn’t commenting, but Wolf has previously said he believes prisoners should be counted at their home or last known address for district-drawing purposes.

State Lawmakers Seek To Shield Reasons For Expenses

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – The Pennsylvania Legislature is concealing who lawmakers and staff met with and why in records on how it spends its roughly $360 million annual budget. The Caucus and Spotlight PA news organizations report that lawyers in the nation’s largest full-time Legislature cite the speech and debate clause in the state Constitution. But good-government advocates say that the speech and debate clause was intended to allow lawmakers to speak freely in official proceedings. Thousands of pages of financial records turned over in response to public records requests contained vague descriptions of expenses or redactions that made it impossible to see their purpose.

World News

Geneva Auto Show Canceled

GENEVA (AP) – The Geneva auto show is being canceled after the Swiss government announced an immediate ban on all public and private events involving more than 1,000 people. It took the measure Friday to halt the spread of the new coronavirus. The move comes into effect immediately and will last until at least March 15. The measure will above all affect the annual Geneva Motor Show, which was due to take place from March 5-15 and draws tens of thousands of visitors every year. Organizers of the auto show confirm that it is canceled out of precaution.

World Harshens Virus Response As Epidemic Worsens

BANGKOK (AP) – Saudi Arabia cut travel to Islam’s holiest sites, South Korea toughened penalties for those breaking quarantines and airports looked for signs of sick passengers as a new virus troubled more places. With the number of sick and dead rising, the crisis gave way to political and diplomatic rows and a sense that no part of the world was immune. South Korea reported a jump in new cases that pushed its total past 2,000. The hardest-hit country by far remains China, though its daily increases are continuing a downward trend. It reported 327 new cases and 44 deaths Friday, raising its totals to 78,824 with 2,788 deaths.

Virus Fear Touches Off Run On Face Masks

Fear of the spreading coronavirus is causing a global run on sales of face masks despite medical experts’ advice that most people who aren’t sick don’t need to wear them. In South Korea this week, hundreds lined up to buy masks from pharmacies and discount stores. Shortages started cropping up in Asia soon after the outbreak became a crisis in China. Now many places have sold out of masks, while others are limiting sales per customer. Amazon is policing its site, trying to make sure sellers don’t gouge panicked buyers. Still, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control says only people who are sick or have symptoms like fever and shortness of breath should wear masks. Others should wash their hands, disinfect commonly used surfaces and avoid touching their face.

Pence’s Handling Of HIV Outbreak Gets New Scrutiny

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Vice President Mike Pence’s handling of a health crisis when he was governor of Indiana is getting a fresh look. This comes after President Donald Trump tasked him with overseeing the U.S. response to the new coronavirus threat. Critics say he mishandled the 2015 HIV outbreak in southern Indiana. Pence delayed allowing a program to provide clean needles to intravenous drug users in one rural county where nearly 200 people eventually tested positive for HIV. Foundation for AIDS Research official Greg Millett says the outbreak would have been “entirely preventable” if Pence had acted earlier. Pence was worried that needle exchange programs enabled illegal drug abuse.

Turkey Raises Death Toll In Syrian Airstrike

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) – Turkey has raised the death toll from a Syrian government airstrike on its forces in northwestern Syria the day before to 33 Turkish troops. The fatalities on Thursday marked the largest death toll for Turkey in a single day since it first intervened in Syria in 2016. The deaths were a serious escalation in the direct conflict between Turkish and Russia-backed Syrian forces that has been waged since early February. The earlier reported death toll was 29 troops. Dozens were also wounded and were being treated in Turkish hospitals. A Turkish official says the situation in Idlib “threatens our national survival.