Daily Archive: September 15, 2010


New U.S. Attorney takes tough stand on neighborhood crime

David J. Hickton wasted no time letting people know that he intends to apply the resources and power of his office to rid neighborhoods of gun violence, protect all citizens from consumer and bank fraud, support environmental law and protect civil rights. Immediately after being sworn in Sept. 7 as the new U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, Hickton laid down the law. JOINING THE BATTLE—As his wife Dawne looks on, David J. Hickton is sworn in as western Pennsylvania’s new U.S. Attorney by Senior U.S. Justice Gustav Diamond. “Freedom from fear is a basic right. The violent criminals who terrorize our neighborhoods and towns will feel the full force of the law as it can be marshaled by this office,” he said. “We must limit and then end the mad cycle of killing and revenge. We must bring back the law to places where it has been forgotten.”


Franco Harris outraged over Toomey’s ‘hate crime’ view

Comments made last week by Republican U.S. Senate candidate, Pat Toomey, regarding his opposition to hate crime legislation, have outraged former NFL player Franco Harris. Harris contacted the Courier to explain the importance of hate crime legislation and what Toomey’s remarks say about him as a candidate. FRANCO HARRIS “I feel that hate crimes are more premeditated in a way and because of that I think that’s why they should be treated differently,” Harris said. “When you have a crime against a certain community of people it turns into fear tactics, it gets to be psychological. We need to look at that in a bigger, broader sense and realize that there’s bigger, broader consequences.”


Attorney: Unlikely Dwelling House thief acted alone

Federal authorities have charged former Dwelling House Savings & Loan customer Jammie E. Harris, also known as Jammie E. Williams with exploiting a lack of computer security to steal $1,101,264.60 from the bank over an 11-month period in 2008. In an indictment made public Sept. 8, a federal grand jury charged Harris, 45, of Hazelwood, with diverting funds from the defunct Hill District bank to a PayPal account through 272 transactions between February and December, 2008. Attorney Marty Dietz, who specializes in federal defense work, said the chances that Harris found this glitch in the security system by herself are exceedingly slim.


Sestak creates panel to reduce Black male dropouts

A study produced by Rand Corp. in 2006 found that 50 percent of African-American males in the Pittsburgh Public School District do not graduate. As dire as those statistics might sound, only 28 percent of African-American male students in Philadelphia graduated from high school in the 2007-2008 school year. The most recent study by the Schott Foundation for Public Education also found a significant racial achievement gap statewide. In Pennsylvania, only 53 percent of Black male students receive their high school diplomas, compared with 83 percent of their White peers. JOE SESTAK


Steelers win first, now face mighty Titans

The Steelers, who survived their first game without Ben Roethlisberger 15-9 over the Atlanta Falcons, now must face their toughest foe of the four game suspension in the Tennessee Titans who ran all over the Oakland Raiders, 38-13. VICTORY CELEBRATION—James Harrison jumps on Rashard Mendenhall to celebrate Mendenhall’s 50 yard touchdown run in overtime that gave the Steelers a 15-9 win over the Atlanta Falcons in the season opener at Heinz Field. Dennis Dixon started off slow but as the game progressed he was given more freedom which led to more confidence as he put the ball in the air more for a very solid first game. He was 18 of 26 for 236 yards with no touchdowns and one interception. He quietly outplayed his much more noted opponent Matt Ryan, who many believe is going to be an NFL star. Ryan was 27 of 44 for 252 yards but was not able to get the ball in the end zone.


Speak Out…How do you think the Steelers will do during Roethlisberger’s suspension?

The Pittsburgh Steelers began their season without the services of star quarterback Ben Roethlisberger who is serving a four-game suspension because of actions off the field. So we asked Pittsburghers how they thought the Steelers would do without him. Here’s what you said. “I think they will go 2-2. We play Tennessee and are definitely not going to win. They have a better offense. Defense is about even.”Lamont FinleyWilkinsburgCook Lamont Finley, Rod Johnson, Donte Watson


Community Calendar

Food and wine tasting SEPT. 16—The Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank will host the 2010 Waterfront Food & Wine Tasting from 5-9 p.m. at the Waterfront, Homestead. This is an evening of wine tasting, restaurant sampling and fun. There will be 18 tents. The cost is $15 or a bag of non-perishable foods and receive a discount. For more information, visit http://www.pittsburghfoodbank.com.


Zimbabweans drinking more beer amid ongoing woes

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP)—Sales of beer have surged by 50 percent in Zimbabwe over the past year amid the misery of daily power and water outages and ongoing economic woes. BEER SALES SURGE—A man drinks a beer in Harare, Sept, 9. Beer sales have surged by 50 percent in Zimbabwe over the past year amid the misery of daily power and water outages and ongoing economic woes. Health authorities also are reporting increases in illnesses linked to the consumption of illegal, homemade drinks with a high alcohol content made from potatoes, rags, chemicals, rotting vegetables and sugar. One illegal liquor distilled over wood fires in the bush around Harare is known as “Take Me Quick.”


Oprah sending audience of 300 to Australia

by Caryn RousseauAssociated Press Writer CHICAGO (AP)—They shrieked, they gasped, they cried, they hugged— and that was before Oprah Winfrey’s studio audience got a trip to Australia. Winfrey kicked off her 25th and final season of “The Oprah Winfrey Show” on Monday with promised surprises. After teasing the 300 audience members with a suggestion she might take them on a trip to New York, Philadelphia or Los Angeles, she said her last season merited something “bigger.” SURPRISE ANNOUNCEMENT—In this photo taken Sept. 9, and provided by Harpo Productions, inc., Oprah Winfrey, top, stands with audience members after making the announcement she will take the studio audience on a trip to Australia during taping of “The Oprah Winfrey Show” in Chicago. The premiere of the 25th and final season aired Sept. 13.


Michelle Obama: Flight 93 crash site shows healing

by Jennifer C. Yates SHANKSVILLE, Pa. (AP)—The victims of Flight 93 are an inspiration to all who visit the rural field where they died on Sept. 11, 2001, will now “see how a scar in the earth has healed,” first lady Michelle Obama said Saturday at a memorial service at the crash site honoring the 40 passengers and crew. FIRST LADIES ATTEND MEMORIAL SERVICE—First Lady Michelle Obama, and former First Lady Laura Bush, right, tour the construction site at the Flight 93 memorial with Gordon W. Felt, president of the Families of Flight 93, left, who lost his brother Edward Felt on the flight, and Joanne M. Hanley, superintendent of the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville, Pa., Sept. 11. Former first lady Laura Bush joined Obama in the rolling hills of western Pennsylvania, marking a rare joint public speaking appearance by two first ladies. Obama thanked her predecessor for helping the country through the difficult days following the attacks.