Archives for July 2015

Penn State Pot Study Results

Penn State researchers claim to have reached some new conclusions about the relationships between different substances used by high school seniors. With marijuana use among teenagers on the rise for several years, Penn State professor Stephanie Lanza and a team of researchers have been able to analyze how that increase relates to alcohol and cigarette use. The study, published in the Journal of Adolescent Health, shows an overall decrease in alcohol use, cigarette smoking and heavy episodic drinking among adolescents since 1975. However, marijuana use is increasing for the first time since the mid-90s, and race appears to be a major factor. According to data collected through the federal government’s annual Monitoring the Future survey, almost 30 percent of black youth reported either smoking marijuana or drinking alcohol in the past 30 days. In 2005, only slightly more than 15 percent of black youth reported smoking marijuana, while alcohol use hovered just about 30 percent. By comparison, a little less than 25 percent of white youth currently report smoking marijuana within the past 30 days, but more than 40 percent report drinking alcohol. In 2005, only about 20 percent reported smoking marijuana, but alcohol use was closer to 50 percent.

Counterfeit money circulating through Blair Co.

Recent shoppers at the Freedom Junction Wal Mart in Blair County are being urged to check their wallets. Freedom Township Police say someone bought $600 in goods earlier this week from the store with counterfeit bills. Police say you may’ve ended up with some of that fake money if you got change from your purchase. Police say if you were there late Tuesday afternoon, you’re urged to check your $20 bills. At least two other police forces in Central Pennsylvania are investigating counterfeit cash coming through local stores as well.

Federal measure could ease flood insurance for Blair Co. residents

If passed, a new federal measure could lower flood insurance for Blair County residents living along the Little Juniata. The Flood Insurance Market Parity and Modernization Act would set coverage guidelines that could lead to more insurance companies offering flood insurance with lower premiums. Media reports say Pennsylvania’s insurance commissioner sent a letter to the state’s congressional delegation encouraging them to support the measure.

Marine walking cross-country for suicide prevention stops in Altoona

A retired Marine is walking across the country to as part of an anti-suicide awareness campaign. A local TV station reports Toby Flaget began his journey in Oregon on June 1. He arrived in Altoona Tuesday. Flaget says he’s trying to break the stigma that suicide is “too taboo” to talk about. He’s also raising money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

PSU reopens parking lot covered in pigeon droppings

A Penn State parking lot plagued by pigeon droppings is back open. A local paper reports a cleaning service has taken care of the problem, quicker than expected. Officials initially estimated the parking lot might be closed through the weekend.

Hammond Building on PSU campus closed due to fire

Fire breaks out on Penn State’s campus. Crews arrived at the Hammond Building along College Avenue near Allen Street to find smoke pouring from the windows late Tuesday night. No one was inside the building at the time the fire broke out, and no one was hurt. A graduate research office on the second-floor, where the fire was sparked, was badly damaged. A spokeswoman for Penn State says hundreds who take summer courses there will be affected. No word on what caused the fire.

Altoona mom faces child endangerment charges

An Altoona mother is charged with child endangerment after police say she left her 8-year-old to care for an infant. The local paper reports Bobbie Vaughn was on the third floor of their home when the 8-year-old took her 4-month-old baby sister onto the front porch, and she fell over the railing, fracturing her skull. Police say their investigation revealed the eight-year-old changed the baby’s diapers and gave it midnight feedings while their mother slept.

Historic property in Martinsburg to be demolished

One of the most historic properties in Martinsburg will soon be no more. The brick building at the corner of East Allegheny and South Market streets that was built in 1815 is being demolished. Owner George Henry, who bought it from the former mayor of Martinsburg, initially planned to refurbish it, but the local paper reports now it will undergo demolition. It’s unclear whether retail shops will return to the site when a new building is constructed.

Police: DVDs stolen from Centre Co. Library

Someone’s stealing DVDs from a public library. The thefts happened at the Centre County Library in Bellefonte over the past two weeks. A local TV station says the thief removed the 32 discs from their cases and put the empty cases back on the shelf. The DVDs are free to check out for anyone with a library card. Staff have since moved all DVDs to behind the circulation desk for check-out.

Curve’s top pitcher heading to Triple-A

One of the Curve’s best pitchers is moving up. Tyler Glasnow is heading to Triple-A Indianapolis. The 21-year-old who is the Pittsburgh Pirates’ top prospect has a record of 5-3 with a 2.43 ERA in 12 games. He recorded more than 10-strike-outs in back-to-back starts.