Gay pride arrest under investigation
PITTSBURGH – A police officer was put on desk duty after video surfaced showing him punching a woman at the city’s gay pride parade and festival.
The officer, Souroth Chatterji, will remain on restricted duty for a month during an internal investigation, Mayor Bill Peduto said Monday.
Chatterji said in a criminal complaint that he was trying to break up a fight when he grabbed the woman by the head and punched her in the side so he could handcuff her.
The officer said the woman, Ariel Lawther, 22, of Harmony, fought with him and kicked him in the groin, resulting in charges of aggravated assault and resisting arrest.
She also was charged with simple assault for allegedly attacking a man the mayor said was with a group of people opposing the parade.
Balloon pilot dies during landing mishap
KIMBERTON – The pilot of a hot air balloon fell from the basket while trying to land in a field near Philadelphia and could not be revived after becoming trapped under it, authorities said Monday.
Jeff Hooten, 47, of Albuquerque, New Mexico, died Sunday after the accident in East Pikeland Township, Chester County, police said.
None of the 10 passengers was injured.
Hooten was reaching to grab a rope to deflate the balloon when he fell, police Chief James Franciscus said. The pilot was dragged after becoming stuck between the basket and the ground, Franciscus said.
House OKs lower fees for disabled vets
HARRISBURG – Many disabled veterans in Pennsylvania could qualify for low-cost fishing and hunting licenses under a pair of bills approved by the House.
Lawmakers voted 196-0 on Monday to give final House approval to the bills.
Senate approval is required before the bills could be sent to the governor.
The legislation would allow any military veteran who is between 60 percent and 99 percent disabled to receive a resident fishing or hunting license for $2.70, including processing fees.
Regular fees for adult resident licenses are $22.70 for fishing and $20.70 for hunting.
Disabled veterans who have lost a limb or the use of a limb or who are totally physically disabled will continue to qualify for free hunting and fishing licenses under current law.
Youth suicide, genocide may become classroom topics
HARRISBURG – Pennsylvania schools could soon be encouraged to teach about youth suicide prevention and the history of genocide, under two separate measures headed to Gov. Tom Corbett’s desk.
Both bills passed the state House of Representatives on Monday.
Under one bill, each school will be required to develop a youth suicide awareness and prevention policy. Teachers will receive instruction on it and schools can choose to work it into the curriculum for students in grades six through 12.
The other bill would require the state Education Department to distribute curriculum materials on the Holocaust, genocide and human rights violations to each school and offer teachers training on the subject.
Gay pride arrest under investigation
- State News
Police: Women stole thousands from elderly sisters, used money to show St. Bernards
Two western Pennsylvania women have been charged with stealing thousands of dollars from two elderly sisters and using the money to attend dog shows.
Intervening neighbor’s death now ruled homicide
The Allegheny County medical examiner says a neighbor who died after he intervened in a fight between a couple next door is the victim of homicide.
Housing police: Naked women slashes 3 in melee
Allegheny County Housing Authority police were trying to identify a naked woman who allegedly slashed or stabbed three other women in an apparent lovers’ quarrel at a public housing complex.
Police: Rescued boys never mentioned drowned teen
Police say two teens who were rescued from a jetty in Presque Isle Bay in Erie last week, and two others who were with them, never mentioned a fifth boy who drowned and whose body wasn’t found until Saturday.
2 arraigned, denied bail in deadly Philly carjacking
Two men accused of carjacking a woman in north Philadelphia and plowing into a family selling fruit on a street corner, killing three children, have been ordered held without bail.
PennDOT pushes ‘Yellow Dot’ vehicle stickers
It’s the car sticker that could save your life.
PennDOT’s “Yellow Dot” program has been around for several years, said Daniel Zakraysek, coordinator of the Cambria Allegheny Regional Highway Safety Network.
Remembering elephant’s rampage
The circus elephant paced the landing outside the Jaffa Mosque in Altoona.
Police formed an uneasy line around the perimeter of the venue’s lawn, rifles at the ready.
It was a cloudy, cold day in April 1993, and Tyke the elephant had just run around the circus ring, slapped a baboon and burst through a building’s front door, tearing off part of the wall above the door.
- State briefs 7/29/2014
TSA finds gun, ammo in Pittsburgh airport carry-on
The Transportation Security Administration says it found a pistol and ammunition in man’s carry-on bag as he passed through security at Pittsburgh International Airport.
Youth pastor fired, jailed after teen-sex charges
A youth pastor has been fired by a western Pennsylvania church and jailed on charges he performed sex acts with a 15-year-old girl in their church building.
- More State News Headlines
- Police: Women stole thousands from elderly sisters, used money to show St. Bernards