Archives for May 2017

Spanier Defamation Extension.

Former Penn State President Graham Spanier has been granted an extension in his defamation lawsuit. In March Spanier was given an extension to reply to former FBI director and retired federal judge Louis Freeh where he was convicted of misdemeanor child endangerment. Now he’s been given more time. Freeh named Spanier as one of four university leaders responsible in the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal. Lebanon County Senior Judge Robert Erby granted Spanier’s request to extend his opportunity to replay through June 6th.

Sandusky Hearing Canceled

The Jerry Sandusky evidentiary hearing scheduled for today in Centre County has been canceled. Jefferson County Judge John Foradora has been presiding over the post-conviction phase of the Sandusky’s criminal case. The cancellation due to the fact that all witnesses and testimony regarding the issues raised, has been presented. The hearing was part of a petition as Sandusky seeks a new trial. The former Penn State defensive coordinator was convicted of 45 of 48 counts of child sexual abuse in 2012 and is serving a 30 to 60 year sentence.

Neil Armstrong Planetarium

The Neil Armstrong Planetarium will host an Altoona Area High School Alumni in Astronomy Wall Reveal on Friday evening at 6:30pm. Several alumni who’ve gone on to careers in Astronomy or Earth and Space science will be on hand. A new edition to the Neil Armstrong planetarium, The Wall, is sponsored by the alumni association and partially funded by the Astronomy Club. The Planetarium has expanded its publis offerings the past few years to include additional public sky show and adult astronomy classes.

Construction in Blair County.

Construction will begin the week of June 5th on the Route 4031 Back Vail Road Bridge. it’ll span Decker Run in the Borough of Tyrone, Blair Couty. It is schedule to begin as part of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s Rapid Bridge Replacement Project. The replacement of the bridge will allow PennDot to remove it from Blair County’s structurally deficient bridge list. The project should be completed by mid-August.

Wolf on Medicaid Cuts

Governor Tom Wolf today released a statement detaiing the effect that President Trump’s budget will have on seniors. The Governor said, “President Trump’s budget put Pennsylvania seniors last. It makes deep cuts to Medicaid and will force seniors to pay more for health care. Medicaid is a lifeline for seniors across Pennsylvania that helps pay the costs of nursing home care.The Trump budget proposes deep and devastating funding cuts over the next ten years, which would force many seniors out of nursing homes.” The Governor says we cannot turn our backs on seniors and force them to bear the great pain of these cuts.

State College Heroin Bust…

According to a State College Police report an informant’s tip led to the arrest of an alleged heroin dealer. Stephen James Watkins of Bellefonte may have sold atleast 10 bags of heroin to the informant in February. Police then set up a controlled buy outside of a downtown State College CVS. They arrested Watkins after a second controlled purchase a few weeks later. Watkinis has been charged with four felony counts of manufacturing, delivering or possession of drugs and two felony counts of criminal use of a communications facility. In this case, facebook messenger.

Piazza father…

In a national TV appearance This morning, the family of Timothy Piazza spoke for the first time publicly about his death. The Penn State sophomore died in a fraternity hazing ritual in February in which police say he suffered multiple injuries in a fall while highly intoxicated. Piazza’s father Jim says it was “horrific. This wasnt boys being boys. This was men who intended to force-feed lethal amounts of alcohol into other young men. The basically treated our son as roadkill.” Eighteen members of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity are facing criminal charges. The fraternity has since disbanded.

Penn State Pres.

On Wednesday, Penn State President Eric Barron Spoke to alumni in an email regarding the death of fraternity pleadge Timothy Piazza. So far, 18 members of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity are facing a long list of crimes as serious as involuntary manslaughter. Barron wrote, “there are no easy solutions, but the commitment remains strong…while instituting change when it comes to private groups is challenging and complex.” Barron went on to say “An atmosphere needs to be established that protects and promotes the well-being and safety of all students in the Penn State community. Our efforts are focused on curbing dangerous drinking and other high-risk behaviors.”

Penn State Fraternity

The final eight members of Penn State’s Beta Theta Pi fraternity went through the arraignment process Tuesday for their suspected roles in the death of Timothy Piazza in February. They were all released on their own recognizance on $50,000 bail. The ten other fraternity members faced arraignment last Friday with the most serious charges ranging from involuntary manslaughter and aggravated assault to hazing andd furnishing alcohol to minors. District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller has requested a condition that the fraternity members have no contact with any witnesses after one member had reportedly done so.

Fraternity Arraignment

Some 12 hours after Penn State sophmore Timothy Piazza fell down stairs during a pledge hazing ceremony at the Beta Theta Pi house, one of the fraternity brothers finally called 911. The 19 year old pledge died a day later. The Eight remaining members of the fraternity who are charged with having a role in Piazza’s death are scheduled for arraingment today. Two of those members face 52 counts each incuing furnishing alcohol to minors and unlawful acts relative to liquor. As Penn State did its own investigation of the February 2nd incident, they permanently banned the fraternity.